Google Ads Fundamentals certification is an important accreditation for any marketer. It’s also one of the ways to demonstrate your knowledge in using Google Ads. Although it’s a relatively common badge of certification, it still requires a certain amount of work and time to learn the main concepts and become experienced in the daily Google Ads use.
So, What Exactly is Google Ads Fundamentals Certification?
Google Ads Fundamentals Certification is a necessary process for Google to recognize you as a marketer and expert in advertising online. After you pass two Ads certification tests, you will get a personalized certificate or contribute to your company’s Google Partner credentials, depending on the Google account you are using.
Like many other Google products, Google Ads Certification has improved over time. In the past, the program was independent, requiring a separate cost to take its exams. Then, the process changed when the Google Partners program was created. In 2018, it further evolved after the migration to Google Academy for Ads.
Despite the ongoing changes and improvements, individual certification still works the same way compared to a few years ago (before Google AdWords became Google Ads). Now, the certification has also become a requirement, even for entry-level agencies.
Also, anyone who goes through the training program understands the importance of getting the certification, as having all the knowledge from Google is more specific compared to general textbooks on how Google Ads works.
This guide will briefly show you how to get certified in the Academy for Ads, as the process could be confusing sometimes.
Step #1: Select or Create a Google Account
- First, determine the Google account that you will use for your certification.
- If you are working for a company, it’s recommended to use your work email.
- If you are an individual marketer, make sure to choose the Google account that you will want your certification connected to publicly.
- If you don’t have an account yet, you can easily create one at http://accounts.google.com.
Step #2: Join the Academy for Ads
After choosing or creating your Google account, it’s important to sign out of any other Google accounts on your browser, it could be confusing sometimes when you are logged into more than one account.
Once you are only logged into the account that you want for your certification, open the following link: https://landing.google.com/academyforads/.
- Click on the START NOW button.
- Accept the terms of service and permissions.
- Then, to affiliate your Google account with your Google Partners agency account, select “yes” when shown the option to share your Academy for Ads account with an agency or a company.
- If you are an individual marketer, select “no” and skip Step #3 below.
Step #3: (Optional) How to Connect With Google Partners?
For credit toward Google Partners and more benefits, it could be better to connect your individual Google account with your agency or company. However, you will have to update your profile.
As shown in the image below, you will see an icon in the top right corner with your photo or initial. Click on it and then go to “My Profile”.
This step mainly requires the completion of the necessary profile information to connect your account with your company.
Most importantly, you will need to enter a company email that has the same email domain of the company that is affiliated by the administrator of the Google Partners account.
Then, Google will need you to complete a quick email verification step after updating your profile.
To get verified or connected, reach out to the dedicated employee in your company.
So, the two-step verification process requires the update of your profile information and authorization of the Google Partners administrator with your company.
Step #4: Prepare for the Exams
Google will provide you with basic info and extensive academic content that you can study before taking the exams. To check the training content and assessments, click on the “Google Ads” tab from the dashboard of the Academy for Ads home page.
If you are new to Google Ads and its certification exams, you have to study the academy content or at least go through it.
For each module, you will need about four hours to watch the videos, read the written content, and answer the sample exam questions.
Even if you have managed Ads campaigns before, it’s still recommended to go through the training before taking the exams.
Also, note that it’s important to answer the sample questions, as they appear exactly like those in the real exams.
Step #5: Pass the Fundamental Exam and the Additional One
To get certified, you will need to pass the Ads fundamental exam and one of the additional exams.
Make sure to choose the right exam from the additional exams according to your focus area, as the certificate will be awarded based on your choice of the additional exam.
The additional exams include:
Although Display and Search are the long-standing exams, Google heavily pushes YouTube and Video advertising.
It’s recommended to choose an exam that’s related to the advertising you usually do or willing to learn so that the certification can provide value to your current or future role.
Note that in case you don’t pass an exam, you will have to wait until the end of the waiting period before you can take it again, and that’s the only penalty for not passing.
In all cases, you need to pass the Ads Fundamentals exam to get certified. However, if you don’t pass the additional exam and need to get certified before the end of the waiting period, you can take another additional exam without having to wait.
Although many companies and managers may require a Google Ads Fundamentals Certification, it takes a lot of effort and time to go through the learning material and training in order to pass the exams, unless you have experience in online advertising.
Besides Ads, the Google Analytics test is also part of the Google Partner program, in addition to more certifications on digital sales and mobile sites.
Depending on your career or current role, such certifications may also be important to have. After getting certified, take note of the expiration dates so you can renew your certification in time. Also, check out other exams in the Ads suite in order to enhance your knowledge and skills.
Partner companies can also attain certain specializations based on their affiliated individuals who have passed additional exams, providing value for the company and the individual.
Just Getting Started with Google Ads?
Check out this standard operating procedure (SOP) on How To Properly Setup A Google Ads Account: