When I was asked to write a blog on how to prepare for the Google AdWords exam my first thought was “that’s simple. Just study”. However, I do realize there are people out there who are just starting out in PPC or have never needed to take the Google AdWords exam. So I’ll start from scratch.
The first thing you want to do when preparing for the exam is visit the Google AdWords Certification Learning Center.
There you will find everything you need to prepare yourself for the Google AdWords Certification Exam. The nice thing is that if you click on one of the exams on the page Google shows you everything you need to study. For example, if you click on the Google advertising fundamentals exam link, Google makes the things you do not need to study non-clickable.
Now for those of you who learn through action as opposed to reading (like myself). I recommend while you are studying, you go through the steps in your PPC account. For example, one of the sections for the fundamentals exam is Account Management Basics. When you click on the link it takes you to an informational page that talks about the 6 main tabs in your account. While you are reading, I suggest you go through the tabs in your account. This at least lets you see what Google is talking about. I also suggest writing notes. Sometimes it’s a little easier to retain information if you write it out.
The exam itself has two parts. The first part is the Google Advertising Fundamentals Exam. This part of the certification is mandatory for everyone looking to become certified. The second part of the exam lets you pick between three options:
- Search Advertising Advanced Exam
- Display Advertising Advanced Exam
- Reporting & Analysis Advanced Exam
When studying for the second exam you should use the same model as studying for the first. However, pay close attention to any hypothetical situations Google might use. The second exam tends to be a little more detailed than the first exam. This is probably why they call them “advanced” exams.
A very important part to remember is that you do not have to take both exams back-to-back. Google allows you to take the fundamentals exam, and then take your second exam when you’re ready.
All four exams require that the test taker reach a certain mark to be considered as passing. They are as follows:
- Google Advertising Fundamentals – 85% or higher
- Search Advertising Advanced Exam – 80% or higher
- Display Advertising Advanced Exam – 70% or higher
- Reporting & Analysis Advanced Exam – 75% or higher
Lastly, remember that it is just a test and that if you don’t pass the first time you can always take it again. 5 years ago it happened to me, but I’m still here both happy and certified.