Certified Search Marketing Specialist

Search marketing can make or break a brand – especially for a local business or entering into a tough market. Becoming certified as a professional search marketer will show employers and clients that you’re on top of the game. This course was created in partnership with Neil Patel.



30 Hours of self paced learning


100% Online – On Demand

Course Type

Short Course

Course overview

Created in partnership with Neil Patel, this course is made up of ten modules designed to take you through from the fundamentals of search marketing to the technical skills and background knowledge you need to form original insights and drive your search campaigns.

You’ll see how SEO, paid search and display advertising work together to deliver results you can measure and respond to in real time. Whether you’re a relative beginner or an experienced SEO pro, you’ll get a fresh perspective on what works and why.


  • The Fundamentals of Search
  • Setting up a website and web presence
  • On-page optimisation techniques
  • Building backlinks
  • Analytics with Google Analytics

Who should enrol?

  • Search marketers looking for a new level of recognised certification
  • Sales professionals who need to truly understand the search part of their sales funnel
  • General marketers ready to maximise the total potential of search, beyond the basics
  • Small business owners and managers who need to drive business through search results
  • Career changers looking to stand out of the crowd with a specialist certification



Globally recognized certification

Receive a globally recongnised certificate
upon completion of your course


Learn from the best

Exclusive insights from recognised experts and industry leaders.



Get exclusive access to myDMI, our innovative membership platform. This thriving platform is a rich resource of digital marketing content.


Get local support

Digital Academy is based in Australia, meaning we’re able to provide you with the support you need right when you need it.


Real self-paced online learning

Truly designed to be studies online.
Anytime and anywhere.


Get promoted. Get paid.

See the stats on certification of choice for
serious digital marketers.

The DMI certification framework is recognised all across the world. Share it on LinkedIn and social media to get noticed by recruiters and decision makers. On completion, your course carries relevance, recognition and pedigree that is highly sought after by your employers.



What will I learn?


10 Modules • Approx 30 Hours of Learning Content


Search marketing has evolved constantly since search engines were first introduced. Staying ahead of the curve means understanding the fundamentals of search, and having the tools to work with the core purpose of search engines, instead of fighting an uphill battle. You’ll cove the basics ofr:

  • search engine optimisation
  • pay-per-click advertising
  • search engine algorithms
  • measurement and analytics
SEO Set Up and Content

There’s a lot that goes into setting up a website and overall web presence that’s search engine friendly. It’s not enough to rely on one element, like a great domain name. You need to know how every aspect of search engine friendliness works together; how you can play a part in the search engine’s mission to deliver the best and most relevant results to users. This module covers:

  • how SEO and content marketing work together
  • on-page optimisation techniques
  • researching SEO content
  • informed keyword research
Optimising SEO

SEO can seem heavy on theory at times. This hands-on, practical module brings it back down to earth. You’ll learn real tried-and-tested optimisation techniques, and see how they contribute to stronger strategic approaches. Learn about:

  • building backlinks
  • maintaining backlinks
  • troubleshooting technical SEO issues
  • maintaining your clear site structure
  • using tools to audit and analyse on-page elements
Paid Search Fundamentals

Organic search only has an advantage up to a point. Paid search is a unique way to cut through the clutter and connect you with users who are ready to act on what your organisation has to offer. This module covers:

  • key concepts of PPC advertising
  • managing PPC campaigns
  • setting up your Google Ads account
Paid Search Campaigns

Now that you have the basics down, you can start running a campaign! This module will show you the tried and true methods for getting your PPC ads in front of the right audience, including

  • managing a campaign budget 
  • optimising your campaign in real time
  • evaluating the performance of your campaign


Demand Generation

Get your message in front of the right people at the right time with demand generation. Whether someone has just discovered your website or has been visiting you daily, there’s a method to capturing their interest again. The module covers:

  • capturing search intent
  • Responsive Display Ads and remarketing tactics
  • device targeting
Search Analytics

Without analytics, your ability to strategise and refine your approach would be seriously challenged. Analytics lets you convert data into meaningful and useable insights that you can act on immediately. This module shows you how to make the most of Google Analytics, including:

  • how analytics work: how the data is gathered
  • types of statistics, patterns and trends
  • using analytics to improve your website
  • using analytics to inform other digital marketing activities
Data and Data Visualisation

Once you have your analytics, it’s time to show off your campaign success. This module will show you how to interpret data and present it, including:

  • collecting and processing data
  • validate your data 
  • predict future campaign outcomes
  • present your data in a visual way
Search Strategy 1 - Research and Planning

You have all the fundamentals and theory down, you’ve created your Google Ads and Analytics accounts, and you’re ready to start running a campaign! Over the next two modules, you’ll learn how to build your campaign strategy, putting together everything you’ve learned. This module covers:

  • researching search campaigns
  • setting search marketing campaign objectives
  • creating your search strategy
Search Strategy 2 - Execution and Optimisation

Now that you have your action plan ready to go, it’s time to hit play and start running your campaign. In your final module, you’ll learn how to:

  • implement your search marketing strategy
  • evaluate and optimise your strategy in real time
  • keep an eye on the industry to keep your strategy relevant

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the assessment for this specialist search marketing course?

After you’ve worked through the learning content, you’ll need to pass a two-hour exam. The Certified Search Marketing Professional exam is administered by Pearson Vue, a third-party computer-based testing partner. There’s a huge network of testing centres around the world; check their website to find your closest.

Your exam fee is already included in the cost of the course. However, if you fail the exam (under 60%) and need to take it again, you’ll need to pay a small fee directly to Pearson Vue when you book in for your next attempt.

Do I need a marketing background for this course?

A background in marketing or SEO can’t hurt, but it’s absolutely not necessary for this course. The modules are designed and organised to take you through from fundamentals to pro-level technical and strategic skills. Whether you’re new to digital marketing or already have qualifications like a Google AdWords Certification, you’ll benefit from the thorough and practical course content. All you need to bring is an interest in SEO and PPC, and a desire to take your career to a new level!

Who should take this course?

If you are (or will be) involved in planning, executing or strategic decision-making around search marketing for your organisation, this is the course for you. You’ll learn the fundamentals you need to make smart data-driven decisions, and to work with teams of subspecialists like SEO contractors, PPC managers and more. 

This course is suitable for participants of all levels of skill and experience. You’ll finish with the knowledge and confidence to direct effective search marketing campaigns within the broader context of digital marketing.

How much does this course cost?

This course, including all content, support and the exam fee, is USD$1299.

Certified Search Marketing Specialist


$ 1,390


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Digital Marketing Institute has 190,000+ members and alumni across the globe. As well as learning the latest in digital marketing, you'll be joining a network of thousands of members and graduates with the same passion for this fascinating, modern discipline.


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