LinkedIn reflects back 10 years of maturation

LinkedIn is celebrating several major milestones this week: Its 10th anniversary and 225 million users. This pretty impressive for a site that started with only 4500 members and has matured into the world’s largest professional social network.

On Sunday LinkedIn posted a visual timeline of its growth, complete with early notes on the network’s direction,photos of its first offices (check out those sweet iMacs), and recaps of various milestones over the years. LinkedIn’s growth has been rather sluggish but also steady, flying under the radar while, in the same time frame, other social networks like Facebook have reached stratospheric heights and toppled spectacularly.

Speedy growth

Over the course of the last three years, LinkedIn’s growth has accelerated. Three years ago, when the company turned 7, its user base hit 90 million. In 2011, LinkedIn became a publicly traded company.

The question to ask is how does a professional resume site become a full-fledged social network? By not resting on its accolade. LinkedIn has continually added new features to assist its users make new connections, recruit talent, find jobs, and share best practices in a variety of industries over the years.

 In the last few months alone, LinkedIn has redesigned its iOS and Android apps, upgraded its search function for more refined results, acquired newsreader Pulse to emphasize content creation, and introduced a new feature that imports your contacts across address books, calendars, and emails.—let’s just say LinkedIn has definitely gotten better looking with time.

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