Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird. These are the three big updates that the Google search engine has gone through over the past few years, the last one having affected approximately 90% of all search queries.
These changes have increased the knowledge needed to produce good SEO results, which has in turn led to an explosion in growth of courses designed to teach people how to work in the new SEO landscape.
To prove knowledge and show credentials in the new SEO paradigm, there is a need for certifications. The reason for this is simple – most consultants who say they know what they’re doing really don’t. The number of gurus out there who are wrong more than they are right is staggering, and it’s never been easier to find out whether you’re learning from somebody who knows what they’re talking about or someone who is just trying to make a quick buck.
The easiest way to separate the wheat from the chaff is to check certifications. Which brings us to this article – the best SEO certifications for 2022.
These are the criteria we used to make our determinations:
- The certification should be well-known (i.e., not some fly-by-night establishment)
- The certification should have relevancy dating back at least 5 years
- The certification should be from an organization that has been shown to have staying power
- The information contained in the certification should be relevant
If all those are satisfied, then all that is left is to determine which of the available certifications are best for SEO practitioners.
The Moz Certifications
The first on our list comes from Moz. The Moz certifications prove that you have a fundamental knowledge of how things work in the world of search engine optimization. There are two certificates.
- The lower-cost Technical SEO Certification Series ($295 as of Dec 2021) covers the fundamentals: crawling, indexing, accessibility and site performance. The cost includes three hours of on-demand instructor-led content, quizzes to test your knowledge, and a final exam. Once you pass, you receive a certificate and a badge for your LinkedIn profile.
- The higher-cost SEO Essentials Certification Series ($595 as of Dec 2021) combines “comprehensive, fundamental SEO education with actionable ways to implement your newfound skills using Moz Pro. With this course, you’ll receive six hours of content guided by your instructors, test your knowledge with exams at the end of each of the five sections, and top it all off with shiny new credentials to share with your professional network, clients, and stakeholders”. It also has quizzes along the way and a final exam. Plus, you will receive a certificate and a badge for your LinkedIn profile.
There are many other courses you can take at the Moz Academy, but these are the ones that lead to a certificate.
The SEMrush Academy
The second round of certifications on our list comes from SEMrush. The training program has been around since 2011. If you go here, you’ll notice there are many courses available, from basic SEO, to market research, to technical SEO, and they all are free.
They have varying levels of courseware available, from beginner to advanced. The advanced level includes a variety of more specialized training courses that will help you better develop your talents. The certifications are valid for one year, so be sure to retake the test periodically to stay up-to-date with changes in SEO best practices.
Do note that most of these courses are based on using Semrush tools, but as Semrush is a solid platform with many SEO, marketing, and research tools available, it is a good place to start learning, especially because the courses and tests are free.
The third group of certifications on our list comes from Google themselves. Note that you will have to sign up (it’s free) to SkillShop, which is Google’s training platform.
There are courses and certifications from Google Ads, Google Marketing Platform, and Google Analytics among others. The one we’ll focus on is the Google Analytics Individual Qualification. The good news is that both the training and the test are free, so you can retake the test as many times as you’d like if you fail, and the certification is good for one year.
Note that the Google Analytics IQ, Google Partners, Badge, and Google Marketing Platform Certified are not the same thing. The first one is an individual certification. The second requires you to have one or more individuals in your company certified in Google Ads, meet a 90-day ad spending requirement of $10,000 across your managed Ads accounts, and meet performance requirements for overall ad revenue and customer base. The third requires additional parameters to be met; you can read about them here.
The Final Word
Certifications show the world that you know what you’re doing when it comes to SEO. With so many options out there, there’s sure to be a course and certification that meets your needs.