LinkedIn How To | Changing Your LinkedIn Background Photo

When browsing LinkedIn profiles, I am always struck by how few professionals have bespoke images as their background header. Your background header appears behind your profile photo in the ‘introduction card’ on your LinkedIn profile. Changing the default header image has an impact on the aesthetics of your LinkedIn profile: it makes your profile richer, more full and enables it to stand out amongst the crowd of bland LinkedIn profiles.

But more than this, it is otherwise wasted real estate. The background header of your profile could - and should - be used to project images and messages consistent with your promise of value.

Editing your LinkedIn header is relatively simple once you know how to manoeuvre LinkedIn’s sometimes tricky profile editing platform. Our 5-step guide breaks down the process into easy-to-follow, bitesize chunks.

How to edit your LinkedIn profile header in 5 simple steps

Step 1: Go to your LinkedIn Profile and click on the edit (pen) icon on your Introduction Card.


Step 2: In the ‘Edit Intro’ pop-up window, once again click the ‘Edit’ (pen) icon on the top right-hand corner of your profile header. A caption will hover saying that the recommended photo size is 1584 x 396px: don’t worry if you aren’t a photographer whizz - we’ll go through what this means and how to make sure that your new header is the recommended size.


Step 3: A page will pop up giving you the option to change your header photo, to adjust it, or to add a filter. From this page, click on ‘Change photo’ and upload a new header photograph that you have saved on your desktop.


Step 4: When working on our clients’ LinkedIn profiles, we usually use a great editing platform called Canva. To emphasise, this isn’t a promotional post: Canva are simply the best at what they do and offer an excellent, free service for creating greater LinkedIn profile headers/banners. Once you’ve set up a free account, you can very easily design a ‘LinkedIn Banner’ using one of their many templates (see below) or from scratch, depending on your artistic ability! One of the other great things about using Canva is that the size of your profile header will be near-perfect for LinkedIn’s requirements.

Alternatively, you can create a LinkedIn profile header on Adobe, PowerPoint or KeyNote, and adjust the size accordingly.

Just remember, your background photo must be:

  • A JPG, GIF or PNG file type

  • No larger than 8MB

  • Be as close to the recommended pixel dimensions as possible - 1584 x 396px - as mentioned above.

If your background photo appears blurry or pixelated, please choose an image with a file size as close to the maximum as possible, as images with larger file sizes typically look better.


Step 5: Now comes the crucial bit - deciding on and designing a great header photo. There are a few criteria for a fantastic LinkedIn profile header:

  • it should reflect your background or interests

  • it should be relevant to your professional offer of value

  • it should be crisp and clear

For example, many of our former clients who work in Financial Services have opted for a slick black and white photograph of Canary Wharf, with a short excerpt of text overlaid, re-emphasising their offer of value.

My own LinkedIn profile header reflects my background in Financial Services (through the skyline photo), my role as CEO of Career Mentor (through the logo on the left-hand side) and succinctly summarises what I bring to the table as a Career Coach (through the 7 word summary).


This may all seem like a bit of a faff but adding a great LinkedIn background photo really does enhance the impact of your Linkedin Profile and will help you stand out, so is worth doing.

Many of our clients are far too busy to spend their time in this way, so if you would like us to work on upgrading your CV and Linkedin Profile, please do get in touch: