The Google AdWords exam certification has changed a lot over recent years. You now have to pass two exams in order to be qualified.
You must complete the Google Advertising Fundamentals exam and one of the three advanced exams. The breakdown of the exams is as follows;
Exam Number of questions / Time Limit (mins) / Passing Score
Google Advertising Fundamentals: 120 / 120 / 85%
Search Advertising Advanced Exam: 120 / 120 / 80%
Display Advertising Advanced Exam: 110 / 120 / 70%
Reporting & Analysis Advanced Exam: 100 / 120 / 75%
Studying for the exams
It is very important that you study properly before taking any of the exams. These exams are not a walk-through so please ensure you prepare adequately. I have found the following resources be a great help in studying for the exams.
AdWords Certification Learning Center
This is a great resource and most the information you will need can be found here. It is broken down into four sections one for each exam. You can also print off the entire study guide so you can study offline. There are some test questions on some of the study material but please note that these questions are very easy and not a good representation of the actual questions in the exam.
AdWords Help Forum
Another great resource is the AdWords help forum. The forums are full of Google AdWords users asking a range of questions covering all topics related to Google AdWords. The forum has a lot of good contributors some of which are actual Google employees. It is a good idea to go through the various topics and questions from which you can learn a lot.
Two other really good forums (which are not connected to Google) are;
Webmaster World and Digital Point
Here you can buy practice questions for each of the four AdWords exams. You can also download a free trial version for each practice exam.
Google AdWords account
The best way to learn is by practice. If you have access to a Google AdWords account make sure you use it! Practice everything you learn and familiarize yourself with where everything is located. For example know where to go if you need to create a report, pause a campaign, add keywords to a group, check the quality score of a keyword and use the keyword tool. You will be asked about these in the exam.
Taking the exam
To start you need to create an account on the Google Certification Program site. From there you can study for your exams, edit your profile, track your progress and join a company if you so wish. When you are ready to do your test you can purchase the tests from the Google start test website. Each test costs $50 and if you fail you will have to pay again. Please note you will need your candidate ID to register for exams. Your candidate ID can be found from your profile on the Google Certification Program website. A "testing center browser" is used when you are doing the exams. This means you will not be able to access any other browsers or applications when you are doing your exams. Also you will not be able to pause the test once it begins so make sure you are well rested and have used the bathroom before beginning the exam.
Read the questions at least twice Take your time and don't rush Think about the questions before you answer If you don't know the answer mark it and move on then return to the question when you have time Google really cares about its users so sometimes it helps to think like a Google user when answering some of the questions!
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