SEO is one of the most popular areas of digital marketing. It is not surprising that there is a huge choice of educational programs. Beginner programs provide fundamental knowledge of website promotion. Expert courses focus on specific optimization tools and methods. Meanwhile, some resources provide information free of charge, while others charge hundreds of dollars for lessons. Potentially counter-intuitively, free courses do not mean poor quality or reduced functionality. To navigate this diversity, Yullux has prepared an overview of the best certifications and courses in 2020.
Google has no SEO Training Certification. A magician never reveals his tricks. It is of utmost importance for Google to keep its algorithms secret. The introduction of Google SEO training certification involves providing comprehensive data on the internal mechanisms of the search engine. The company does not do this to avoid conflicts of interest and manipulation by SEO specialists.
Still, Google strives for transparency as much as possible. The Search Optimization Starter Guide has been created to help website owners and web developers. Here you will find useful tips on how to make a Google-friendly website; how to index content, and when to avoid this step; how to correctly select a URL, structure information, and organize website navigation; how to work with meta tags, images, and links. Adherence to these principles will help search engines to better scan, index, and understand your content.
You can’t become a certified SEO expert with Google but you can officially confirm the achievements in related areas. To do this, Google has launched a special online learning platform called Skillshop. All courses are absolutely free of charge. After testing, you will receive a certificate that will be displayed in your profile. You can also share it in social networks or print it out. The validity period of the Google Ads certification is limited. Depending on the certificate type, you will need to confirm it again in 1-2 years.
1. Google Ads Certification
The first step is to create a Skillshop account. You can register as a freelancer or specify the company you work for – in this case, your company’s management will receive notifications about your progress. Then you need to select the topic of interest in the catalog and start studying.
You can get certified after the successful completion of two exams. The first is the universal Google AdWords Fundamentals test. The second test you choose from one of the specialized fields:
- Search Certification confirms the ability to build advertising campaign strategies using Smart Bidding and Audience Solutions tools.
- Display Certification shows how well you are able to work on brand awareness and interact with potential clients to increase sales.
- Video Certification confirms your ability to create a positive brand image with video campaigns, provide users with the most relevant ads, attract attention with creative stories, and increase conversion with YouTube and GoogleVideo tools.
- Shopping ads Certification shows that you have learned how to use Google solutions to attract new clients, promote your product range, and build a dialogue between buyers and sellers of a regular or online store.
- Measurement Certification demonstrates the ability to evaluate the effectiveness of advertising campaigns, analyze conversion data, and use it in making marketing decisions.
Questions in tests are often practical in nature. The more experience you have with advertising campaigns, the easier it is to pass the certification exam. The main exam takes 75 minutes, and the test for the chosen specialty takes 90-120 minutes. It is enough to score more than 80% of the points. If your first attempt was not successful, you can take the test again in a day. We recommend spending this time on self-education. Testing helps to detect gaps in knowledge and fill them with useful information. Each course contains training materials in the form of text, flashcards, and short videos. Depending on the topic, it will take you from 2.5 to 5 hours to study them.
2. Analytics Academy Certification
You can take free training courses, pass the analytics test, and get a certificate on the Google Analytics Academy website. Google Analytics Consultant should be able to analyze the behavior and interests of the target audience, track traffic and conversion, identify the most efficient strategies for product promotion, and so on. You can immediately test your knowledge in the test account.
To become a certified user, you need to go to the Skillshop website and pass the Google Analytics Individual Qualification exam. How long does Google Analytics Certification take? This depends on the chosen field of study and your level of knowledge. A careful study of the material will help you pass the Google Analytics exam. The material of each training block is designed for an hour, but you can follow your own rhythm. Another hour is allocated for completing tests. The Google Analytics certification is valid for 12 months, after which you need to pass the GAIQ test again.
3. Google Marketing Platform Certification
This is another large-scale course from Google experts. Just like Google Ads certification, this program contains two mandatory tests. The first certification exam reinforces your understanding of the main tasks and workflows in Google Marketing Platform products. The second exam shows the profile knowledge:
- The Search Ads 360 Certification Exam confirms your ability to configure your campaign and measure KPI in your Search Ads 360 dashboard, calculate conversions, and optimize your advertising strategy using Floodlight tags.
- The Campaign Manager Certification Exam indicates your understanding of the basics of targeting, creating, optimizing, and evaluating campaigns in Campaign Manager.
- Creative Certification demonstrates the ability to find creative solutions for ads and customize them with Display & Video 360 tools.
- The Display & Video 360 Certification Exam officially reinforces the skills of developing, implementing, and evaluating the performance of a media campaign with Display & Video 360 tools.
Educational materials are designed for the average level of knowledge. Each block takes 40 minutes to 1.5 hours but you are free to study at your own pace. Each program ends with an exam according to the standard Google assessment system: you must provide the answers in the allotted time and earn more than 80% of the points.
4. Google My Business
Complete with its own ranking rules, Google My Business certification confirms your ability to optimize the company’s page in the catalog. This is an indispensable skill for promoting offline business. You get additional organic traffic by putting branches on the map and specifying the details of work.
The Waze Ads Fundamentals course is useful for those promoting products and services for drivers. You can use navigation systems for your business purposes. Thanks to properly configured ads, your location on the map will become a destination for more clients. To get a certificate, you need to pass a short educational course and pass a 30-minute exam.
6. Bing Certification
The Microsoft search engine, as well as Google, is in no hurry to disclose its algorithms, so it does not run specialized SEO courses. Instead, you can take the free Bing Ads Certification.
The program is similar to Google Ads but has its own specifics. You are free to take classes in Microsoft Advertising at your own pace. At the end of the training, you will need to pass a certification exam of 100 questions by giving at least 80% of correct answers. As a result, you will receive a Certified Professional badge, a printed certificate, and a place of honor in the Microsoft Membership Directory. Certification is valid for one year; after which you will need to pass the certification again.
If you aren’t already familiar with SEO, the terminology and the range of different services can seem daunting at first.
But it’s worth learning more. Most SEO services are affordable and easy to use, and they can put your business in touch with customers like never before.
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