Are digital marketing certificate programs a good way to learn digital marketing on your own? Do you have more chances of getting hired if you’re a holder of a marketing certification or a complete waste of time?
We did our research and in this comprehensive review, you’ll learn everything you need to know about digital marketing certifications.
We’ll start by presenting the best digital marketing certifications you can pursue in 2021. For each certification, you’ll learn how much it costs, how to get certified, and the advantages of enrolling in the particular course.
Towards the end of the post, you’ll also learn what jobs you can get with a digital marketing certificate and other useful advice on how to approach the learning process.
The list includes the top online marketing programs offered by reputable training institutions, marketing organizations, and Universities.
What is a Digital Marketing Certificate?A digital marketing certification is awarded to individuals upon successfully completing the requirements of an online digital marketing course. It’s a way to verify the skills and education of the holder in regard to digital marketing techniques and strategies.
Certified marketers can use the certification to distinguish themselves from other marketers and increase their chances of getting hired.
A digital marketing certificate is not the same as a digital marketing degree. You can get a degree in digital marketing by attending a regular university program (classroom training, usually four years), and obtain a Bachelors’s or a Master’s.
These are the best digital marketing certificates you can pursue and get certified in digital marketing.
Google digital garage is a learning platform owned by Google. They offer various online courses and certifications covering a range of topics from digital marketing to machine learning and self-improvement.
One of their most popular certificates is the Google digital marketing certificate.
What you should know about this certificate is the following:
This Google digital marketing certification will help you build the following skills:
How do you get certified? To be awarded the Google Digital Marketing Certificate you need to complete all 26 modules and pass the final exam (40 questions).
Is Google’s digital marketing certification worth it? It’s a good certificate for beginners and it’s free. The online learning platform is easy to navigate and the module structure is well-organized. If you know nothing about digital marketing then this course is a good starting point.
You’ll learn the fundamentals and the high-level theory but it won’t make you an expert. Other programs in this list, taught by industry experts, include real examples and provide more actionable advice that goes beyond the theory.
So, the bottom line is that you can follow this online marketing certificate and get certified (it’s good for your CV), but this is not a course you can use as a reference when you start working with advanced digital marketing strategies.
Relialesoft Academy was founded in 2016 and it’s part of Reliablesoft Digital Marketing Agency. The training programs offered by reliablesoft are prepared and taught by experienced digital marketers with 20+ years of hands-on experience in the industry.
Reliablesoft academy currently offers two certificates: An SEO certificate and a Digital Marketing certificate.
The Digital marketing certificate covers the following areas:
What you should know about reliablesoft’s digital marketing training is the following:
How do you get certified? You need to complete all 10 courses and pass two exams. The SEO exam (you’ll also get an SEO certification) and the Digital Marketing exam. Both exams are multiple-choice exams.
Is the reliablesoft certification worth it? To avoid providing you with a biased answer, you can review the feedback of the 3500+ students already enrolled in this program. Compared to the other programs on this list, this certificate is affordable for everyone. It also comes with a non-conditional 60-day money-back guarantee.
The Harvard Extension School is offering a number of professional development programs, one of them is the Digital Marketing Strategy Program.
This program is ideal for executives, mid-level marketers, and professional marketers who want to understand the big picture of designing and executing a digital marketing strategy. Participants need to have prior knowledge of how digital and social media platforms work.
What you should know about Harvard’s certificate is the following:
What is included?
This program is all about digital marketing strategies. It’s not for beginners or for those looking to get hands-on experience with digital marketing. It’s a program aimed at marketers and company executives who want to understand how they can incorporate digital marketing channels into their marketing campaigns.
It does cover a wide range of topics like SEO, Search engine marketing, influencer marketing, social media advertising, and content marketing.
How do you get certified? You will earn a certificate for attending the Digital marketing strategy program.
Is the Harvard digital marketing certification worth it? Yes, if you already work for a big company and want to get ideas on how to use digital marketing in your organization. The program is taught by professional digital marketers with experience in business digital marketing.
Duke University is based in North Carolina and it’s offering the Digital Media and Marketing Certificate through the Duke Continuing Studies division. The DCS is offering a wide range of certifications through online training.
This certification is for both students that are new to the digital marketing industry and for the more experienced online marketers.
All students have to complete the Digital Marketing Certified Associate (DMCA) module which is the introduction to digital marketing and then they can select to enroll in any of the following courses:
What you should know about this online certificate program is the following:
How do you get certified? There are three certifications you can achieve:
Certificate of Completion: You need to complete the basic course and at least 6 of the advanced courses. You also need to attain a minimum score of 80% on one of the offered tests for each course.
Online Marketing Certified Professional (OMCA and OMCP): By following this course you can potentially achieve the OMCA and OMCP certifications. These certificates are awarded by the Online Marketing Certified Professional (OMCP) organization. It should be noted that the exams for getting the OMCA and OMCP certifications are not included in the course price.
Is the Duke marketing certificate worth it? It’s a comprehensive program that covers all areas of digital marketing but it also has three issues. Limited time access, no refunds, and to get certified you need to attend external exams.
The Digital Marketing Institute was founded in 2009 and is one of the leaders in digital marketing training. They offer several diplomas and certifications covering a wide range of digital marketing areas. Their partner network expands globally with 140 education partners offering their training programs.
Their DMI Pro certificate includes 30 hours of online training covering the following digital marketing disciplines:
What you should know about the Digital Marketing Insitute DMI Pro certificate is the following:
How do you get certified? You need to pass one exam (3 hours) administered by Pearson Vue, via its global network of test centers. The cost of the exam is included in the course price.
Is the DMI Pro certificate worth it? There are many benefits to gain by enrolling in this certificate program. You’ll get a globally recognized digital marketing certificate, the course covers all the important digital marketing channels and you’ll also get good support (exam preparation questions and other resources).
The downside is that you don’t get a money-back guarantee based on course satisfaction. If you register and find out that the material is too basic or you’re not happy about it, you won’t get a refund.
Simplilearn is an online learning platform founded in 2009. They started as a blog and gradually became one of the world’s leading certification training providers. They offer a number of digital marketing certification programs, one of which is the Digital Marketing Specialist Certificate.
They call this a ‘Master’s Program’ and it includes 6 main courses (and additional electives) that cover in detail the following topics:
The material taught in the course is aligned with other marketing certifications including Google Ads, HubSpot, Facebook blueprint, and Bing Ads. In addition upon completion of the master’s program, you can also apply to pass the relevant exam and become OMCP certified (an exam voucher is included in the price).
What you should know about this training program is the following:
How do you get certified?
Is the SimpliLearn Digital marketing certificate worth it? Yes. In fact, it’s one of the best digital marketing certification programs you can follow this year. The main reasons are:
Coursera is an online education platform offering a number of courses, specializations, professional certificates, and online degrees from top universities.
The classes are 100% online and it’s a subscription-based service starting at $39 per month. Once you register to Coursera you can access a number of courses and earn a certificate upon successful completion of a course. To achieve a specialization (like Digital Marketing), you have to complete a number of courses included in the specialization path.
The Digital Marketing Specialization is offered by the University of Illinois and is part of the Master of Business Administration (iMBA) degree.
It includes the following courses:
What you should know about Coursera’s program is the following:
How do you get certified? When you finish each of the 7 courses and complete the hands-on project, you’ll earn a Certificate.
Is the Coursera Digital marketing specialization worth it? The course material will help you develop the following digital marketing skills: Digital Marketing, Marketing, Pricing Strategies, Marketing Analytics, Mobile Marketing, and Social Media marketing.
It is a highly theoretical course and it won’t teach you how to run digital marketing campaigns or work as a digital marketing professional. You should enroll in this certificate program if you plan on continuing your studies and achieve the iMBA degree awarded by the University of Illinois.
The OMCP Digital Marketing Certification is offered by the Online Marketing Certified Professional organization. OMCP does not provide training but the standard and requirements for becoming a certified digital marketer.
What you need to know about OMCP is the following:
They offer two online marketing certifications, the OMCA Certification for Digital Marketers, and the OMCP Digital Marketing Certification.
The OMCA is for non-experienced digital marketers and it’s the first step for obtaining their premium certificate (OMCP).
To achieve the OMCA you need to:
How do you get certified for OMCP?
To become OMCP certified, you need to:
The OMCP Exam
The exam can be taken online and it costs $395. It’s a multiple-choice exam and it takes about 2:15 hours to complete. Online marketing disciplines included are:
Once you pass the exam, you need to create an account with OMCP and upload proof of your experience and other credential needs. The documents will be reviewed by OMCP and then you’ll be awarded the Digital marketing certificate.
Is the OMCP certification worth it? It depends on what your goals are. If you want to get a certification that is globally recognized, then this is a good choice. For those that are working in big companies and want to show off their credentials, being OMCP certified will make help you stand out from the crowd.
But, it won’t help you become a better digital marketer, the process is complicated and to maintain your certification status you’ll have to renew it every two years. When you start working in the digital marketing industry, the last thing you want to do is spend your time trying to keep your certification up-to-date.
LinkedIn learning was created after Microsoft acquired Lynda. The platform is subscription-based (similar to Coursera and Udemy). You pay a monthly fee and you can access any of the online courses available in their library.
Unlike Reliablesoft Academy and Digital Marketing Institute, they are not providing digital marketing training only but they offer training in a number of areas. They combine several courses together to form a learning path.
‘The Become a Digital Marketer’ learning path will help you learn the fundamentals of online, mobile, content marketing, and how to create effective online marketing plans.
The following courses are included:
How do you get certified? You get a certificate of completion for each course.
Is it worth taking LinkedIn Learning training courses? The nice thing about LinkedIn digital marketing training is that some of the courses are taught by reputable and experienced digital marketers. Learning from experts who work in the industry is much more valuable than learning from University teachers with no real hands-on experience.
The downside is that their learning paths are made of courses that have no relation between them. In other words, you lose the advantage of structured learning offered by a dedicated digital marketing bundle created by the same academy or instructors.
The American Marketing Association (AMA) was established in 1953. It is a membership-based community for marketing professionals across North America.
The AMA offers two marketing certifications in cooperation with the Digital Marketing Insitute. The PCM Digital Marketing Certification and the Certified Digital Marketing Professional (DMI Pro).
How do you get AMA certified? The AMA does not provide training or the exam, to achieve both certifications you need to pass the exam of DMI Pro certification, offered by the Digital Marketing Institute.
Is the AMA certification worth it? The AMA certification alone is no longer available as a standalone certification but it’s awarded to students who pass the DMI Pro exam. DMI Pro is a globally recognized certificate and worth pursuing.
The Facebook Blueprint Certification is the official Facebook certification program for digital marketers.
There are nice certificate programs you can pursue, including a Digital Marketing Associate certification and a Marketing Science Professional Certification.
Associate certifications are valid for 24 months and professional certifications for 12 months.
How do you get certified? To get certified you need to pass one exam per certification. You can prepare for the exam using Blueprint’s online courses or other Facebook courses you can find online.
Certification is not free. You have to pay $150 for each exam. Exams can be taken either at your local test center or online (monitored by an online proctor).
Is the Facebook blueprint certification worth it? In short yes. All modern digital marketing professionals should be holders of a Facebook Certification. Facebook is an important channel for any digital marketing campaign and becoming certified shows that you have proficiency in using Facebook’s tools.
In our Facebook Blueprint review, you’ll learn everything you need to know about Facebook certifications and the steps to follow to get certified.
Google Ads is the most popular online advertising platform and it is imperative that all marketing professionals have good knowledge and hands-on experience with it.
Google offers six Google ads marketing certifications through Google Skillshop. All certificate programs are free and you can use Skillshop online courses and other resources to prepare for the exams.
How do you get certified? To get certified you need to pass one online exam. The exam is free and is available through the Skillshop platform. All exams use the multiple-choice format and include around 50 questions.
For more detailed instructions, check out our Google Skillshop review.
Is Google Ads certification worth it? It’s undoubtedly one of the certifications that should not be missing from your CV. Besides helping you improve your marketing skills, being certified is part of the Google Partners Program for agencies.
If you own a digital marketing agency you need this for becoming a Google Partner, if you are an employee looking for a job, it will make you attractive to future employers.
YouTube offers several courses through the YouTube Creator Academy. Courses are grouped into six categories and they cover all aspects of YouTube marketing including channel optimization, content strategy, and production.
How do you get certified? You first need to log in to YouTube academy and choose one of the available courses. You can finish the lessons at your own pace and pass one exam with a score of 75% or above to get certified.
Is YouTube certification worth it? If YouTube is part of your marketing strategy then it’s worth investing a few hours to go through the course material and get certified. You don’t have to follow all courses but you can start with the ones that are more directly related to your line of business.
The Google Analytics Individual Qualification is a free marketing certificate offered by Google to Google Analytics customers. It covers both basic and advanced Google Analytic concepts such as reporting, conversion tracking, and audiences.
How do you get certified? To get a Google Analytics certification you need to sign up for a Google Skillshop account and prepare using the courses provided by Analytics Academy.
The exam is free and can be taken online. It includes 70 questions and you have 90 minutes to complete. The exam features a mixture of multiple choice and true and false questions. The passing score is 80%.
Is Google Analytics certification worth it? Obtaining the Google Analytics Individual Qualification is certainly worth it. The biggest advantage of being certified is the analytics skills you will develop preparing for the certification exam.
You will become an expert in Google Analytics, and help you become a better digital marketer whether you are working with SEO, PPC, or content marketing.
To help you decide which is the best digital marketing certificate for your needs, here is a comparison table showing the cost of each certification.
Yes, pursuing a digital marketing certification is worth it and I’ll explain below the benefits and value of becoming a certified digital marketer.
Best way to learn digital marketing on your own
Digital marketing certifications are a great way to learn digital marketing on your own. Instead of spending your time looking for clues on how the different pieces that make up digital marketing work together, you can enroll in an online marketing course and get structured education.
Get a plan to follow
Good courses come with a learning plan and step-by-step instructions and this makes learning faster and more effective than reading random blog posts or watching unrelated YouTube videos.
Learn from the experts
When you enroll in an online marketing certificate program that is taught by experienced digital marketers (like the ones listed below), you’ll not only learn the theory of digital marketing but how it can be applied to practice.
Digital marketing is a highly practical discipline and trainers that have years of working experience in the industry can teach what you need to know and not what you should know.
Prove your professional skills
Getting a digital marketing certification does not automatically make you an expert but it’s a step in the right direction. To become an expert, you need to have years of working experience with digital marketing campaigns and success stories to share.
If you’re starting out now and have no working experience, a certificate shows to potential employers and clients that you have the necessary skills and determination to become a successful digital marketing specialist. It’s a great asset to your CV and for your career.
Stay on top of new developments
Popular certification programs are updated regularly to include the latest digital marketing trends and practices. When you enroll in a program make sure that the material has been updated recently.
There are many ways you can get a digital marketing certificate, one of them is through online training. Most of the certifications listed below are taught using online on-demand training. This means that you can follow the lessons online at your own pace and time.
Becoming a digital marketing certified professional is the first step for starting a career in digital marketing. But, as mentioned above, a certificate alone does not make you a digital marketing expert.
To become a digital marketing manager and go after the top-level jobs and earn a higher salary, you need both certification + experience.
So, with a marketing certification or a digital marketing degree, you can get an entry-level digital marketing job and work as:
The average salary for digital marketing specialists in the US (based on years of experience) is the following:
0-1 Years of Experience: $53K1-3 Years of Experience: $57K4-6 Years of Experience: $68KWhere can you find entry-level digital marketing jobs?
You can apply to work for a Digital marketing agency (search for digital marketing agencies on Google and look for a Careers page).You can start your own digital marketing agency and offer digital marketing services to clients.You can become a freelancer and apply for digital marketing jobs through Upwork, Flex Jobs, Glassdoor, and angel list.