The 9 Best Digital Marketing Certification Programs for 2022

Marissa Sapega, contributor to the CareerFoundry blog

If you’re thinking about a career in digital marketing, a certification program offers a flexible, more affordable route into the field than a traditional degree. It also helps to demonstrate your skills and dedication to potential employers, especially if it’s from a recognized, reputable provider. 

But, with so many options on the market, which digital marketing certification programs are actually worth considering?

To help you out, we’ve done our market research and compiled a shortlist of the best digital marketing certification programs available right now. Whether you’re looking to brush up your existing skills or break into digital marketing as a complete beginner—these certifications will help you on your way. 

Here’s what we’ll cover:

  1. Is a digital marketing certification worth it?
  2. What jobs can you apply for once you’ve got a digital marketing certification?
  3. What are the best digital marketing certification programs on the market right now?
  4. Key takeaways and next steps

If you want to jump straight to the certification programs, just use the clickable menu to skip ahead. 

Is a digital marketing certification worth it?

It’s a smart move to consider a career in digital marketing, given that experts estimate the global digital marketing spend will top $450 billion in 2021. Even better, they expect this number to increase by 40% by 2024. And guess what? Companies will need digital marketers to manage those billions. 

If you’re considering a career change, a digital marketing certification can be an enormous help. Here’s why:  

A digital marketing certification program will get you job-ready

One of the best ways to learn new skills is through a structured learning environment. Yet, unlike a traditional degree, a digital marketing certification program will focus only on digital marketing and will not take nearly as much time to complete. Depending on your chosen provider, a digital marketing certification program can offer the complete career-change package, taking you from complete beginner to job-ready in a matter of months. It’s a great option if you want to change careers but don’t have the time, money, or patience to spread it out over years and years! 

It will help with networking and mentorship

Many digital marketing certification programs include mentoring as part of the services students receive for their tuition. Mentorship is beneficial for everyone, no matter what stage you’re at in your career. Especially if you’re new to digital marketing, a mentor will give you advice and feedback on your work, share their tips and insights about the industry, and potentially open up doors for you when it comes to making connections and looking for jobs.

Networking is another benefit. When you take a digital marketing certification program, you’re not alone. You may have the opportunity to work on group projects and get to know other students, widening your social circle. Even if you study online, most programs will provide access to an online community space. You never know who might introduce you to the hiring manager for your next role! Aside from that, it’s extremely motivating to be studying alongside other upskillers and career-changers from all over the world.

A digital marketing certification program will help keep your skills up to date

Even seasoned digital marketers need to keep on top of new trends, platforms, and technology, as change is the only constant in this field. Digital marketing certifications often offer more up-to-the-minute curriculums than traditional degrees. Getting a certification is an excellent way to show employers that you’re keeping up with the industry (if you’re already in the field) and, if you’re brand new to digital marketing, that you’ve followed a structured learning path to master all the necessary skills and know-how. 

Now let’s look at the careers that a digital marketing certification can help with. 

A student sitting on the sofa working on a laptop, completing their digital marketing certification program

What jobs can you apply for once you’ve got a digital marketing certification?

You already know that digital marketing is a rapidly expanding field. Part of the reason why is because there are so many roles that fall into this category. One of the biggest benefits of a digital marketing certification program is that it’ll prepare you for a career in the field. So what jobs can you apply for once you’ve got your certification? We’ve outlined the top digital marketing jobs in this guide, and we’ll highlight them briefly here, too:

More specific job titles include that of the SEO specialist, performance marketing manager, content marketing manager, and copywriter—to name just a few. Essentially, the route you take depends on where your interests lie and whether or not you want to specialize or generalize. 

Either way, a digital marketing certification program will lay a solid foundation for your career in digital marketing, teaching you the fundamentals you’ll need for any role. From there, you can build up your skills to focus on a particular area of digital marketing. 

Now we know the benefits of a digital marketing certification program, and where it might take you, let’s get to the heart of the matter: What are the best digital marketing certification programs available?

A student on a video call on their laptop as part of their digital marketing certification program

The 9 Best Digital Marketing Certification Programs

If you do a Google search for “digital marketing certification,” you’ll no doubt end up with a surfeit of options. We’ll help you separate the wheat from the chaff when choosing the best digital marketing certification program to satisfy your unique needs.

1. Kellogg Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing

The prestigious Kellogg School of Business at Northwestern University offers a digital marketing certification as part of its executive education program. 

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Best for: Serious professionals with a few years of work experience 
  • Duration: 6 months (estimated 15-20 hours per week)
  • Cost: $6,950

Course description

This comprehensive program covers all the main digital marketing channels, including search engine marketing (SEM), search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click display ads (PPC), and email. The curriculum includes hands-on experience with common marketing channels, a capstone project focusing on real-world applications, and professional help building a marketing resume and online portfolio. Students will learn from a series of live webinars broken down into 20 modules and even have the option to join office hours for additional tutelage from esteemed digital marketing experts. 

2. Google Analytics Certification

Udemy’s Google Analytics Certification course will get you in fighting shape to pass your Google Analytics exam and earn a certificate that will help set you apart from your peers in the digital marketing sector. 

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Digital marketers interested in becoming an expert in Google Analytics 
  • Duration: Courses are on-demand and can be done at your own pace
  • Price: $21.99 for the course or $29/month for access to Udemy’s full library

Course description

Google Analytics is one of the most common and critical tools for a digital marketing professional to master. GA novices and experts alike will benefit from the course’s two hours of on-demand video instruction, downloadable resources, and 200 practice questions. There’s even a practice exam you can take to help you prepare to earn your official Google Analytics certification. Even if you aren’t planning on taking the test, this course will boost your knowledge of Google Analytics—which can only improve your ability as a digital marketer. 

3. Digital Marketing Pro Certification from the Digital Marketing Institute

This digital marketing certification is a collaborative effort between the American Marketing Association (AMA) and the Digital Marketing Institute (DMI). Students who pass the exam will be dual-certified with two professional credentials: the PCM® Digital Marketing and Certified Digital Marketing Professional. 

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Newbie to intermediary digital marketers looking to improve their expertise in the field and burnish their credentials 
  • Duration: 30 hours of on-demand courses
  • Price: $1,368

Course description

Having conferred over 30,000 certifications since its inception in 2009, the Digital Marketing Institute is recognized as one of the top issuers of digital marketing certifications worldwide. The Digital Marketing Pro dual-certification promises to boost the skills of entry-level to intermediate marketers, thanks to a comprehensive curriculum that includes courses on content marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, digital marketing strategy, SEO, and more. Former students rave about the program: 92% agree that the course had a “positive impact on their career,” and 81% of graduates snagged a promotion after successfully completing the course. 

4. Duke University Digital Media & Marketing certification

This professional-level online course will prepare you to take the Online Marketing Certified Professional (OMCP) exam to earn the highly-valued certification. 

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Digital marketing professionals with a few years of experience 
  • Duration: Recommended 350 hours of self-paced instruction/study time that students can complete over a 12-month period (spending 5-10 hours per week)
  • Price: $3,195

Course description

Duke University offers this course for professionals interested in attaining the industry-leading OMCP certification. Students must pass the Digital Marketing Certified Associate (DMCA) module and receive that certification before moving onto the advanced modules, which cover topics like mobile marketing, SEO, paid search, and content marketing in more depth. They’ll also be exposed to popular digital marketing tools like Hootsuite (social media), Mailchimp (email marketing), and Google Ads (paid search). Hands-on work through labs that include access to Mimic Pro and Mimic Social allow students to hone their skills without needing access to the real platforms.  

A student sitting at a desk, working on a laptop

5. BrainStation’s Digital Marketing Certification

BrainStation offers both online and on-campus bootcamps and courses for those looking to learn in-demand tech skills. Their online digital marketing certification promises to teach cutting-edge skills and accelerate your digital marketing career. 

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online, live
  • Ideal for: Digital marketing professionals and newcomers alike
  • Duration: 10 weeks, 5 hours per week
  • Price: $3,250

Course description

The BrainStation digital marketing certification course is divided into five units: marketing strategy foundations, attracting and engaging audiences, digital marketing analytics, social media marketing, and email marketing. The lessons are taught online, at set times, in a live classroom environment, and the project-based nature of the course will have you working on a real-world project for your marketing portfolio. Upon completion of the course, you’ll get a professional certificate to share with your network. 

6. Columbia Business School Digital Marketing Certificate Program

The digital marketing certification offered by Emeritus and Columbia Business School provides a comprehensive initiation to the field of digital marketing. 

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Entry-level marketing professionals 
  • Duration: 3 months, 2-4 hours per week
  • Price: $1,250

Course description

If you’re looking for a course that’s a little more in-depth but won’t take you the best part of a year to complete, the Columbia Business School offers a digital marketing program spanning just three months, requiring as little as two to four hours of study per week. Taking place entirely online, the curriculum is divided into fourteen modules, covering topics such as key marketing channels and principles, customer behavior, content marketing and messaging, and digital marketing metrics. The content is delivered through live online teaching sessions and Q&As, discussion groups, and video lectures. You’ll also try your hand at real-world applications and simulations. In all, this is a highly interactive, comprehensive course that will give you a credible digital marketing certification for your CV.

7. Become a Digital Marketing Specialist (LinkedIn)

Taught by various experienced professionals, LinkedIn’s online course provides a no-pressure environment for entry-level marketers wishing to build their knowledge of digital marketing.  

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Entry-level marketing professionals 
  • Duration: Almost 20 hours of on-demand videos broken down into 11 modules
  • Price: $29.99/month or $19.99 paid annually for access to all LinkedIn Learning courses

Course description

This is an ideal course for people with little to no experience with digital marketing. It provides a comprehensive overview of all the leading digital marketing channels, including Google Ads (PPC), SEO, email, and social media. Students will also get a basic introduction to Google Analytics, content marketing, Facebook, Instagram, and even learn fundamentals of graphic design using Adobe products. Each video module includes a quiz to test how much you’ve learned, and you’ll receive a certificate upon completion of all the modules. 

8. Google Ads Skillshop

Google offers several free certifications for its tools through its Skillshop, including one for Google Ads.  

At a glance

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Digital marketers looking to specialize in search engine marketing (SEM) or brush up on their existing knowledge 
  • Duration: Each of the six Google Ads courses ranges in length from an estimated 2.6 to 4.7 hours long to complete
  • Price: Free!

Course description

If you’re keen to become an expert in any of Google’s ad formats (e.g., pay-per-click, display, Shopping, etc.), these mini modules are the perfect way to achieve your goals. Google has broken down each course into easy-to-digest articles with interactive components, like flip cards and a short quiz at the end. Students even get additional context for how to use each ad type through real-world case studies. A digital marketing certification that credibly proves your competence in the top SEM platform will ensure your resume stands out from the rest in today’s competitive job market. 

9. HubSpot Digital Marketing Certification Course

Hubspot Academy has a wide variety of marketing certifications that will benefit digital marketers at any stage of their career. The digital marketing certification course is geared towards both experienced digital marketers looking to upskill, and newcomers looking for an introduction to the field.   

At a glance:

  • Mode of study: Online
  • Ideal for: Marketers looking to build out their skillset or get an introduction to the field
  • Duration: Four hours (comprising 9 lessons, 37 videos, and 11 quizzes)
  • Price: Free!

Course description

HubSpot’s free digital marketing certification course will take you through the fundamentals of digital marketing, with modules covering content creation, SEO strategy, website performance, social media, and an introduction to paid search advertising and email marketing. Although you’ll get a certificate of completion, it’s important to note that this is a free course that provides a high-level overview of the field. If you’re taking a digital marketing certification program in order to get a job in the field, you’ll need a more comprehensive offering. Still, this is a great place to start if you’re just dipping your toe in and aren’t quite ready to commit to a more intensive program of study. 

Key takeaways and next steps

Whether you’re keen to go all-in through an intensive program that will facilitate a career change or simply interested in keeping your existing skills fresh, you’ll be sure to find the perfect digital marketing certification with all the potential options available to you. Your next step is to determine your goals, budget, and time frame for completion, and you’ll be good to go! 

To learn more about starting a career in digital marketing, check out these guides:

What You Should Do Now

  1. Get a hands-on introduction to digital marketing with a free, 5-day short course.

  2. Take part in one of our live online events about career change into tech.

  3. Talk to a program advisor to discuss career change and if digital marketing is right for you.

  4. Explore all our career-change programs and become an in-demand tech professional.