Benefits of Passing the Adwords Exam

Google certification is considered by many business professionals as a ‘must’ for today’s search marketing professionals. Having Google Advertising Professionals as part of a company or team adds a competitive advantage that translates into higher profits, greater client retention and a better customer experience in terms of successful AdWords campaigns.

Taking and passing the Google Advertising Professionals exam is a statement that can be equated to having a Google AdWords expert on staff, giving that individual or the company that employs them, an edge when bidding and competing for clients. While the training is rigorous, it is straight-forward and becoming one of standard tests required by advertising agencies operating on the Internet.

Utilizing online training via theGoogleLearningCenter, there is feedback for progress during the preparation process in the form of quizzes. TheLearningCenteralso serves as a constantly updated resource for search engine marketers. The Google Advertising Professionals Program gives marketing experts an in-depth education. It allows them to manage paid search initiatives in Google’s AdWords program quickly and expertly.

While the curriculum covers eight areas of paid search management and offers 90 separate quizzes on that material, if it is worked through consistently and steadily, it makes the exam an attainable goal to pass. To receive certification individuals must pass what some say is a “grueling final exam” where they will be required to demonstrate their knowledge and competence of their paid search management. Passing the exam and achieving certification as a Google Advertising Professional is considered an advantage with distinction within the search marketplace.

Many companies have jumped on board the Google Advertising Professionals bandwagon in recent years forming separate in-house teams of Google certified experts that are providing SEO and pay per click advertising services as part of the agencies total portfolio of services. These employees are 100% dedicated to the paid advertising market forming what is called search teams who manage multiple client accounts. All of these individuals are Google certified.

Achieving certification in this program ensures that the people managing clients’ campaigns have the familiarity and knowledge give clients the edge in a competitive advertising arena. The growing AdWords medium is growing in complexity and certification and recertification keeps individuals at the top of the game. Clients see certification as a benchmark of excellence and reassurance that they are getting a fully qualified firm or consultant to handle their marketing campaigns.

While technology is only one component of successful paid search management, knowledgeable people at the helm who are competent and Google certified speaks to a companies expertise and capacity to manage paid search in a proficient and efficient manner. It also lends to the idea that the company or individual has taken the time to become fully qualified and is committed to delivering excellent service. Google maintains superior technology on the cutting edge; however, business judgment is still based on human expertise to manage and navigate that technology. In the online advertising market, being Google certified speaks to that issue and is a reflection of the commitment to providing the best in Google AdWords campaigns for the client.

The benefits of taking that extra time, going through the Google program and passing the Google Advertising Professional Exam is more than displaying a logo on your website. That logo represents commitment to an excellent experience for the client, exceptional return-on-investment (ROI) and smooth, effective AdWords campaigns. The benefits can be measured in increased an customer base and higher client retention.

How To Pass The Google Advertising Professional Exam

The Google Advertising Professional Exam is not easy, but it is possible to pass if you use some easy to follow tips. Becoming a Google Advertising Professional is worth the effort, and the $50 dollars will be well spent as it translates into a larger client base. If nothing else, passing the test will tell you if you have a full understanding of the AdWords process and if your own campaigns of getting the maximum return-on-investment.

Here are some easy to follow tips to ensure that your $50 is well spent.

First, run an AdWords campaign. We learn by doing and with AdWords that’s no exception. If you want to learn how to run successful campaigns, run one for yourself and track your results. Familiarize yourself with the interface and mechanics of setting up and using the interface. Experiment and learn about every tool, go to every screen and click on every link. Even if it doesn’t interest you or you don’t think you’ll need, explore it anyway. Pay attention to names of screens, menus and tools and take notes about what each screen is for, how it works, the menu controls on it. Visit these links more than once.

Go to the Learning Center at http://www.google.com/adwords/learningcenter/. Google has set up a center where, if you watch the videos and read the material, you’ll learn a ton. After each lesson, practice what you’ve learned in your AdWords account on your test campaign.

You’re going to want to watch the videos at least a couple times without skipping any. Go through them in sequential order first. Even if you know what the video is about, watch it anyway. You know how teachers always throw in stuff as they teach. It’s those little extras that you are looking for so make sure you go thru all of the multimedia videos.

- Print out and read the text lessons after you watch the video. Keep your print outs handy as you play around in your AdWords account. When you are done with that lesson, put the printouts in a 3 ring binder to keep them organized and for easy retrieval. Reread them at least one more time. Get highlighter to emphasize important information. Get section dividers so that you find the information quickly.

- Take the quizzes. Even if you hate tests and quizzes, take them anyway. The Learning Center has quizzes that are designed to test your learning after you each category. Keep in mind you need 75% to pass. If you don’t pass the quiz, go over the material again. There is no one looking over your shoulder or grading you at this point. You can study the material until you feel comfortable.

- Take breaks about every 20 minutes. Most people’s attention spans and focus fade around the 20 minute mark. Take a five-minute break and return to the material refreshed.

- Once you decide to take the test, remember a few things. Ask yourself if you have a decent grasp on the material. Find a quiet place. Make sure your computer and Internet connection is working at optimum levels. You’d hate to fail the test because you lost your connection. It is advisable to use broadband or cable for the test and not dial-up.

- The exam is a multiple choice test. Use this to your advantage. Rule out incorrect answers first and pick from what’s left.  For non-multiple choice questions, use common sense if you don’t have the answer. Preferably have the answer.

- Use your resources. Keep that 3 ring binder you made handy so that you can do a quick lookup if you get stuck. Make sure you have access to your AdWords account ready in case you need to access it.

- Use the “Review Later” checkboxes if aren’t sure. Each question has a check box in the upper right hand corner that will allow you to return to the question later. Any question you are not 100% sure about, check the box and move on. After you have answered everything else, then go back and review the questions you couldn’t answer on the first go round.

That about covers it. Passing the exam is possible on the first try if you shore yourself up with good old fashioned information and experience. Using these tips and a with little common sense, you should have no problem passing. Best of luck!

What Everybody Ought To Know About the Google Advertising Professional Exam

The Google Advertising Professional exam is part of the Google Professional Advertising program and is designed for individuals, managers and companies who administer multiple AdWords client accounts. If you don’t have multiple accounts, plan on getting multiple accounts or even know what AdWords is about, you can stop reading here. If you do or are planning on expanding in this area, read on.

 

This program is designed especially to help you get the highest benefit in this expanding advertising business area. For the online Ad Manager placing Google ads is part of and at times the replacement for newspaper classifieds and it is now routinely budgeted into the monthly advertising plan. Attaining a high level of proficiency in the marketplace is essential in building and maintaining customer loyalty, selling advertising services and generating high returns on client investment.

 

Google has been and continues to be at the forefront of customer service management addressing the needs of the public by adding programs and departments tailored to market interests. To that end, they launched the Google Advertising Professionals program in November, 2004, when it became apparent that consultants needed help in coordinating and utilizing the new technology of online advertising. Google started this program aiming it at addressing the growing requirement for consultants to facilitate the increasing number of new Google AdWords clients with their AdWords campaigns.

 

 

The program is designed for professional advertising brokers who manage multiple AdWords accounts for their clients and companies. It is also available for the smaller independents and as a result ranges from self-employed individuals specializing in SEO marketing to full service advertising agencies that cover all forms of media. AdWords knowledge is essential to staying ahead of the game, delivering cutting-edge services, new promotions and the top discounts available. This course is another logical step to increase knowledge while adding credibility and professionalism to companies and individuals in the advertising arena. Upon completion, the company or individual is certified to be proficient at a high level of AdWords competency.

 

In order to obtain Google Certification, prospective candidates must successfully enroll in the Google Advertising Professionals program, accept and sign the Rules of Use and prepare, take and pass the test. In addition to passing the exam, candidates and companies must also build and maintain US$1,000 in generated advertising revenue during a 90-day period.

 

The prospect must be in good standing with Google. Google AdWords is an extremely effective way of attracting highly targeted traffic to any website, and having a complete, proven knowledge of the AdWords system by passing the Google Advertising Professional exam guarantees that companies and individuals representing clientèle will be at a level to deliver the best the Google advertising has to offer.

Basic AdWords terminology for understanding the Google Professional Advertising Program

In order to pass the Google Professional Advertising Exam you will need to be thoroughly familiar with the basic terminology used to track and measure AdWords campaigns for yourself and your clients. As a result, Google’sLearningCentertakes a comprehensive look at terminology used. This article will address four basic concepts that need to be thoroughly understood when preparing for the Google exam: CPC, CTR, Quality Score, and Minimum bids.

Cost-per-click (CPC): Simply put, cost-per-click or CPC is how much you or your client will pay each time a web surfer clicks on your advertising link. Under the cost-per-click (CPC) pricing model, AdWords charges your account for each click your ad receives. If 10 people click on your ad, you are charged for 10 clicks at a set price depending on the placement of your ad in relation to the competitors. If no one clicks on your ad, you won’t incur any costs. It will simply be displayed during  a search query and users don’t click it. No click. No cost.

Clickthrough Rate (CTR): Clickthrough rate (CTR) is a metric that measures how your ads are performing. It takes into account the relevancy of your ads, how often users are predicted to click on them, and based on a formula a resulting higher or lower CTR is calculated. The system computes your CTR by taking the number of ad clicks divides it by the number of impressions and multiplies by 100.

Minimum bid: When we mentioned the cost-per-click this assigns the least amount you can pay per click in order for your keywords to show up in the listings. Say your minimum bid is 1.00. If the keyword requires a minimum bid of 1.05, your ad for that given keyword will be inactive for the search. In other words, it will be invisible and no one will click on it. If you increase your minimum bid to $1.05, the ad will suddenly show up based on the least amount your willing to pay per click. Very important when trying to advertise

Quality Score: Quality Score is tricky but useful if you are trying to lower cost-per-clicks for your advertising or for your client. It measures the quality of your keyword and ad and based on that computation determines your minimum bid. The Quality Score is determined by your keyword’s clickthrough rate (CTR), the relevance or lack thereof of your ad text, the keyword performance in the past and over time and other relevancy factors. What you need to remember when looking at the Quality Score is, however quite simple. The higher your Quality Score, the lower your minimum bid, and as a result, the price you’ll wind up paying per click.

Learning the basic AdWords terminology and understanding the benefits of reading your reports for minimum bid and getting lower pricing by thoroughly understanding the Quality Score will go a long way towards increasing customer satisfaction and return clients. These can be further refined by analyzing how-to use the Google Network, language and location targeting, and site targeting effectively.

What Real Test Takers Are Saying About the Google Professional Advertising Exam

From the forums otherwise known as the virtual nightclubs and bars of the Internet, come words written by actual test takers in the process of testing, folks who have already passed, those who failed and folks who are scared witless and virtually drinking to build their courage to get started in The Learning Center.

We will skip the terrified and focus on three test takers who actually took the plunge. We will keep the names of these folks secret to protect the innocent as we drop pearls of wisdom, screams of anguish and everything in between about this formidable exam. We offer three different perspectives on the exam: one person who passed on his first attempt, one person who failed and a guy who was just ranting about the lack of toughness of the test scoring in general.

Mr. X stated the following:

“As far as it being difficult, I managed to pass first time only 3 weeks after first learning what PPC was and I’m no genius. I scraped through, but it isn’t rocket science. Go through the tutorial, make notes and you should be ok.” – Mr. X

Mr. X makes a valid point. Go through the tutorials and makes notes. This is a really good way to be successful your first time out. He said that he scraped by. Nobody remembers if you pass by 1% or 25%, just the fact that your logo is there.

Mr. Blue didn’t tell us if he passed or failed; however, he ranted a bit about the lack of difficulty in passing the test. I guess Mr. Blue didn’t know Mr. X who “scraped by” at the 75% pass rate. He probably wouldn’t hire him in any case.

Mr. Blue had the following to say:

“If I was Google, the passing score would be a lot higher. Scores of 75% mean that twenty five percent of the time the test taker was wrong. Why should I allow someone with 75% or less on this exam to manage my PPC budget? The title awarded is “Adwords Professional”… that means “expert” if you are using other people’s money. If the required score was 90% – or higher lots of people would work a lot harder and become even smarter about adwords . . .” Mr. Blue

Mr. Blue went on and on, obviously upset by the fact that the Google AdWord Professional Exam was too easy to pass. He may be a rocket scientist on this point.

Mr. Red crashed and burned leaving us to wonder if Mr. Blue is out of his tree when it comes to being a professional but then again, Mr. Red does have trouble with grammar, punctuation, spelling and capitalization. Mr. Blue might have a point. I don’t think I would go with somebody who posted something this poorly constructed. This is advertising through word smith mastery, after all.

“I failed with 68%…, it was stupid because at the 54 th question i thoughted that i have no chance. So get an copy of each question to study latter. I know the questions will be diferent, but with an example it´s easier to know what are the questions about.

When i finished and get 68%, i thougted that if i have revised instead coping the question, maybe i pass.” – Mr. Red

One good point Mr. Red made was that you would want to keep the questions for later. While this is a good idea, with 1.5 hours to get through it, one really wouldn’t have time to cut and paste the questions while trying to take the test. There are, however, sample questions available in theLearningCenterso he was on the right track and if he’d been in theLearningCentermore, he might have found the sample questions and passed, too.

Well, there you have it, three different perspectives on the exam. Take if for what it’s worth. Points to bear in mind from these real-world examples includes the following: study a lot, take quizzes, take notes, ranting about how it’s too easy afterwards is a good hobby and if you are going to post in a forum about how you failed, run your spell checker prior to posting your copy. Lastly, if your goal is to pass the Google Professional Advertising Exam, don’t give up. It’s doable and possible, and like the driving test, you can take it until you pass.

 

Google Professional Advertising Exam Updates

If you’re studying for the Google Advertising Professional Exam, it’s a good idea to keep up with the changes and updates that Google makes in their advertising program. Google has made the following updates and as a result they have added new lessons/content to theLearningCenter. Here are some of the most recent updates made:

Ad Formats lessons Updated: In the ‘Creating Ads’ section access the ‘Setting up an Account’ to learn more about the latest ad formats (including local business ads, mobile ads and video ads). The Ad Formats content is now included on the exam and available for study in the Learning Center.

Updated AdWords Policies: Find changes to the policies and guidelines. The policies section includes Link Policy, Editorial Policy, Image Ads Policy, Trademarks, Copyrights. Google’s Invalid Clicks Policy and Identifying Invalid Clicks.

UpdatedReportCenterlesson: There are a number of new reports available. Discover the latest about the newest report types and variations when preparing for the exam. Google goes into an in-depth lesson on the report structure, how it works and the benefits of use. Reports are collections of statistics that help advertisers analyze their accounts.

TheAdWordsReportCentercan generate fully customizable reports on specific topics like campaigns, keywords, and ad text which can be viewed as graphs as well as statistical data. The help clients identify important trends over weeks, months, or years with an emphasis on spikes and dips in traffic, CTR, or other key elements of an account.

Each report is fully configurable in terms of columns and performance filters, and they provide just the relevant, timely. In preparing for the exam, an in-depth look at reports is essential.

Updated AdWords Editor lessons: A candidate can learn about the latest changes in Google’s free, easy-to-use account management application. The account management module allows and AdManager to juggle multiple accounts and keep up with advertising for more than one client. The AdWords Editor material includes the following: An Introduction to AdWords Editor, How to Add, Edit, and Delete, Viewing and Sorting Information, and Sharing and Posting Changes.

When studying for the Google Advertising Professional Exam, it’s a good idea to review the above changes. As Google continues to create new features and updates to AdWords, they also add to theLearningCenterto stay current. Checking to see what’s changed before taking the Google Professional Advertising Exam will be useful and just plain prudent.

Google Professional Advertising Exam Focus on Link Policy

One of the areas that the Google Professional Advertising exam focuses on are the policies and guidelines that AdWords stipulates when placing advertising into their network. Link policies are basic to getting clients advertising into the network quickly and effectively.

AdWords uses two URL when placing ads, the one that is seen and the actual web address that is accessed. It is important to be clear on what a URL is, the two URLs used and how to avoid making mistakes when ad building.

URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator, and is commonly called a web address. The two URLs used with each AdWords ad: display URL and destination URL.

The Display URL is part of AdWords ad must include a display URL as the fourth line in the ad.  A display URL would be visible to the reader in the Google search engine and on publisher websites. This can be anything as long as it’s the same domain name as the destination URL.

Destination URL: The destination URL is the web address of the landing page to which an ad will actually link. Here is the example provided in theLearningCenter.

Correct:

Display URL: bigbookstore.com

Destination URL: bigbookstore.com/new/a-c.htm

Incorrect:

Display URL: bigbookstore.com

Destination URL: http://www.amazon.com/home.html/104-7002842-259

There are three rules that must be complied with prior to ad approval:

1. The link used must be to a working, live website. This is to insure customer satisfaction when clicking on links.

2. The link has to not link to a site that is under construction, broken or lacking in content. The person landing on the site must find a viable, active site.

3. The landing must not require a program other than the browser to view the landing page. In other words, the destination URL must be an HTML page.

The Back Button: The link to the website must have a back button that works properly and return the users to the page where the AdWords ad is located within one or two clicks.

Affiliate Programs are allowed although Google will only allow one ad for affiliates and parent companies sharing the same display URL per search query.

When a user enters or leaves your site, no additional browser window, including pop-unders, is allowed. Research indicates that the user finds pop-ups, pop-unders distracting from the AdWords advertising appearing on that page. You can have a pop-under on the pages where the AdWords URL points to, but not where the advertising resides.

As you can see, the Google Professional Advertising Program is quite extensive. This is only one topic covered in the program.

Google Professional Advertising Exam Specifics

The exam is administered online and is intended to assess whether the prospective candidate has an advanced understanding of AdWords. Passing the exam fulfills one of the requirements to become a Qualified Google Advertising Professional.

The exam covers a full spectrum of AdWords concepts – going from elementary to advanced. Questions are presented in real-time so the individual taking the exam should have a firm grasp of the AdWords product before testing, find a quiet place where they won’t be interrupted, and turn off the cell phone.

The Google Advertising Professional Exam is currently available in English (US,UKand Australian), French, Italian, German, Spanish, Dutch, Russian, Polish, Turkish, Japanese, Korean, and Brazilian Portuguese. Hebrew is, however, not currently available on the exam.  Therefore, Hebrew speakers will need to take the exam in an alternate language.

Registering for the Google Advertising Professional Exam is quick and easy. Make sure that you have signed up for the Google Advertising Professional Program prior to signing up for the exam as you will need your ID to take the test. Sign up through the third-party site that Google is using to administer the exam. Currently it’s a firm named Prometric, one of the leading online testing agencies.

The current online exam is made of 100+ questions on all of the various aspects of the AdWords program. It has a time limit of 1 hour and 30 minutes. Once the test is started, it can’t be paused so prepare in advance for all contingencies.

75% out of 100% is the current requirement to pass the exam. Upon completion of the exam, the score will be sent to the email used upon registration for immediate review. The score will also be available on theProCenterpage of the My Client Center as well as through the testing site. Detailed exam results are not disclosed, just the exam score.

The exam costs US$50. While you can pay in other currencies, and if you’re paying in currency other than U.S. dollars, your credit card company will automatically convert this charge into the equivalent in local currency. The US$50 is a non-refundable expense, so be ready to take the exam when registering. . If an exam retake is necessary, the cost will be incurred each time. The exam can be taken twice every month.

The minimum, computer technical requirements are as follows:  For Microsoft 98/NT/2000/XP users: IE 5.01, Netscape 7.0, or Mozilla 1.3.1 web browsers or higher. For MAC OS 8.0 or higher users: IE 5.0 or Netscape 4.78 web browsers or higher. For LINUX users: Mozilla 1.3.1 web browser or higher. JavaScript and session cookies should be enabled on your browser and you should have a screen display setting of 640 x 480 and 256 colors or higher. 32MB of RAM and 200MB of free disk space and a 56K Internet connection is also required.

Preparing for the Google Advertising Professionals Exam

The best way to prepare for the exam is through theGoogleLearningCenter. There are free, comprehensive training lessons presented in both visual and textual format which cover the entire AdWords program. Each training module includes a number of subsections covering AdWords topics. Each topic and subtopic contain important information for becoming an AdWords specialist. There are tutorials and after completion of the material, the individual can test his or her retention by completing quizzes. TheLearningCentermaterials are updated on a continuous basis as the program evolves keeping AdWords professionals current with the latest in Google innovations.

The prospective Google Professional candidate will want to work on the training materials in sequential order. However, some AdWords business people already know different things about the program and can skip some of the introductory material, focusing on the topics they are either unfamiliar with or want to learn more about.

Each lesson is self-paced to meet personal skill levels and learning methods. Topics can be tailored to the individual’s learning style. When the candidate thinks they’ve mastered the concepts presented, they are then ready to take the exam.

Passing the Google exam is one of the most important requirements necessary to become a Google certified professional and to receive the Qualified Google Advertising Professional Logo. Selling AdWords in a business with multiple clients means that the individual or company should present the best possible scenario for the client. Having the latest knowledge is key to being successful in this situation.

It is a fact that having credibility in the advertising world is crucial to building and maintaining a viable client base. With the Google Professional Advertising Program and certification, it is a clear way to build both knowledge and credibility in a systematic and hassle-free way. The Google Professional Advertising exam tests what is studied via theLearningCentervideos and text and a passing grade indicates a high level of proficiency with the AdWords program.

Preparation is the key, and working in theLearningCenterwill make taking the test much easier. Prepare fully prior to trying the test for two reasons: you have to pay each time you take the test and that can get costly, and you want to know as much as possible when you sit down due to confidence levels and its effect on an individual passing or failing through nervous guessing. Not giving enough time for preparation can lead to failure, test retaking and feelings of fear. All of this can be avoided by watching the videos fully, watching the videos again and rereading the material for parts that need clarification and preparing until the information is second nature.

Each video has a time in minutes listed next to it. This will help when organizing and planning out time allotments in order to get the most from the material. It does not matter how long it takes to prepare for the exam. What matters is that the person taking it feels confident, ready and knowledge-rich when it’s time to start. TheLearningCentercan accomplish all of this and more.