SEO Certification: Costs, What’s Included, And Is It Necessary?

The job market is nuts. You want to be able to bring in a decent income with the opportunity to grow.

Is that too much to ask?

Having something to fall back on, or even boost the career you already have, is a must in times like this.

Having a better understanding of search engine optimization (SEO) can be like a golden ticket. SEO is a very lucrative field right now.

If you want to capitalize on a growing need for SEO experts and add something impressive to your resume, you should consider earning an SEO certification.

We’ll explain what it is, how much it costs, and why it can help you reach new heights.

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What Is SEO Certification?

Continuing your education and increasing knowledge in an area like search engine optimization is important in our internet-driven society. 

Taking an informative and thorough course in SEO and earning a certificate to show your successful completion is one way to prove your expertise.

There are many reasons to seek a certificate in search engine optimization, including, but not limited to:

  • You run a blog or website and want to improve traffic without hiring outside help
  • You are looking for a new or part-time job
  • You want new skills to add to your resume
  • You want to negotiate a higher salary in your current job

What Type Of Jobs Can You Get With An SEO Certification?

Having training in SEO or an SEO certification is now a requirement for some professions. It can help boost your career.

Having additional training in search engine optimization can improve your prospects of landing a lucrative position. SEO jobs are on the rise and you may be able to position yourself to have a better job outlook with additional training.

You may want to consider an SEO certification for these jobs:

  • Copywriter
  • Content Marketer
  • Executive Assistant
  • Professional Blogger
  • Digital Marketer
  • SEO Specialist
  • Website Administrator
  • E-Commerce Manager

SEO Certification Benefits

Unless you have endless amounts of time on your hands, you probably don’t want to research SEO strategies one-by-one.

Wouldn’t it be better to get them all in one place from a source you trust?

Taking an SEO course for certification is a great way to increase your knowledge and advance your skills without having to go back to school or spend months researching.

SEO Certification has several benefits, such as:

  • Understanding HOW and WHY certain SEO practices work
  • Learning from experts in the field who are already achieving the success you seek
  • Better marketing for your website
  • Negotiating power for a higher salary
  • Continuing education for an updated resume to better fit the job market

Learning why SEO works can help you, regardless of your career path. And if you’re going to learn something, you may as well learn from the best, right?

Some courses even expand beyond keywords and basic coding to help you improve your content to boost search results organically. This new skill can help you in  a variety of settings.

You Learn The Why Behind SEO Best Practices

Some people think you can just throw a few keywords in here and there into content, or pay for clicks, and BOOM. You are ranking on Google.

That may have worked at one time, but it won’t cut it in today’s internet market.

When you learn why something works, you will know how to make it work for you.

SEO is always changing and evolving. If you can gain a basic understanding of the current best practices, you stand a better chance of staying on top of changes and adapting to meet new challenges.

Earning an SEO certification can give you the skills and confidence to face the world of internet marketing head-on.

Once you have these new skills, you may be able to negotiate for a higher salary or better job. An understanding of SEO and how to apply the principles is a highly marketable skill in today’s job market.

You Learn From Experts

If you’re going to spend the time to learn, you may as well learn from the best in the field.

Most popular SEO courses are written or taught by SEO experts, like Yoast or Moz.

There are many different courses on the market and they each offer advice and helpful information from people who have already had success.

Better Salary Negotiating Power

Having more and better skills means that you can add value to a company. That value should be worth something to you, too.

When you have specialized training and an SEO certificate, you can show your employer, or potential employer, that you are knowledgeable about search engine optimization and that you are willing to learn new things to succeed and advance.

That can translate into better negotiating power during salary negotiations.

Having additional certifications certainly won’t hurt your chances.

Who Offers SEO Certification Courses?

Getting an SEO certification can be a lot of work, but it is 100 percent worth it.

Your work first begins with finding the course that is right for you. 

There are dozens of SEO courses ranging from very basic to extremely detailed. Depending on your level of expertise and your needs, an SEO certification course can help you get started or take you to the next level.

Just a few SEO certification programs include:

  • Google SEO Study Guide
  • SEMrush Academy
  • Coursera, in partnership with the University of California, Davis
  • Portland SEO Growth: SEO The Write Way
  • Moz Beginner’s Guide to SEO
  • Yoast SEO Training
  • Udemy (multiple courses available)
  • QuickSprout: Everything You Need to Know About SEO

Some of these courses can be quite expensive, while others are free. Not all SEO certification courses are created equal, and some will offer you training that is more advanced or highly specialized.

Find a course that meets your time constraints, budget, and business needs.

SEO Certification: Google

Google offers an excellent overview of SEO and how to make it work for you in their Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Starter Guide.

While the study guide is not offered as a formal course, and thus offers no certification, it is one of the most important things to go over if you have a website.

If you want a great place to start, you should check out the Google SEO Starter Guide.

What Does The Google SEO Course Provide?

The SEO Starter Guide covers everything — from securing your site to browser compatibility to avoiding duplicate content.

The study guide offers nine guidelines to help you better understand Search Engine Optimization and how it can work for you.

A few of the topics covered include:

  • Helping Google find your content
  • Organizing site hierarchy
  • Optimizing content and images
  • Making your site mobile-friendly
  • Promoting your website
  • Much more

While the SEO Study Guide does cover the material well, you need to have a basic understanding of how your site works and know some technical lingo to get the most out of it.

As a free resource, the Google Search Engine Optimization Study Guide is an excellent place to really boost your knowledge of SEO.

SEO Certification: Portland SEO Growth

If you are looking for an SEO certification that walks you through the course and gives you tips on marketing yourself, Portland SEO Growth offers an excellent option.

Based on principles and practices used every day in highly successful content marketing, the course covers everything you need to know to take your content creation to the next level.

What Does The PSG SEO Certification Offer?

This course offers you a lot more than just basic info on search engine optimization. Anyone can throw in a few keywords and hope to gain a little more traffic.

SEO The Write Way teaches you about how the quality of the content can directly impact the quantity of traffic.

The course does outline how to optimize your site and improve your content, but it doesn’t stop there.

SEO The Write Way offers:

  • A self-paced course to allow you the freedom to complete modules on your timeline.
  • Actionable tasks to prepare you for success.
  • Over 8-hours of content.
  • 12 detailed modules covering many aspects of SEO and content marketing

Most courses give you the basics or only focus on the coding side of SEO. This course offers a more well-rounded approach, as well as information on getting started as a copywriter to use your new content marketing skills.

SEO Certification: Free Courses vs. Paid Courses

If you’re looking for a certificate course in SEO, you’re probably wondering how much it is going to cost you.

Luckily, there are courses for literally every budget.

Free courses, from companies like Google, may not offer a certificate but can provide you with the knowledge you need.

On the other end of the spectrum, you can find offerings from reputable programs, like Coursera, that can cost hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars.

Just because a course is free or inexpensive doesn’t mean it isn’t still high value. Figure out where you are starting and where you want to end up, and you will be able to find the right course for you.

Free SEO Certification Courses

You don’t have to spend a fortune to take an SEO certification course. There are several courses available, for free, to help you learn more about search engine optimization and improve your understanding of the best practices.

Here are a few free courses, in no particular order, to consider:

  • SEMrush Academy
  • Yoast (Free version covers only basic content)
  • Google Search Engine Optimization Study Guide

These courses can help you gain a basic knowledge of SEO and how to apply it to your website.

Paid SEO Certification Courses

If you are looking for more detailed information, or want a course that covers the material thoroughly, choosing a paid course might be your best option.

Some online certification courses can be quite expensive, but you can still get a great course for a reasonable price.

Check out these courses, in order of cost (lowest to highest) for some great options:

  • Coursera ($49/month)
  • SEO The Write Way (one-time cost of $89 using code MILSPOUSES)
  • Yoast SEO Academy ($299/year and up)
  • Moz Academy (one time cost of $595)
  • Udemy (cost varies by course)

Look at the details of the course before you commit in order to save yourself, and your wallet, any regret.

Some courses offer only technical aspects, whereas other courses, like SEO The Write Way, also offer information and advice on content creation and copywriting

You want marketable skills, and copywriting is a hot side hustle if you know the right skills and best practices for SEO.

What Are The Best SEO Certifications?

There are a lot of great online SEO courses available, with options for every budget.

You will always get out what you put into any program, but you do want to make sure that the program you choose meets your needs and offers you the best value.

If you want training that will help you succeed and grow in a number of potential careers or hobbies, such as copywriting or blogging, you really should check out SEO The Write Way. It offers you the knowledge, expertise, and caring we don’t think you will find anywhere else.

Picture of Lindsey Jacobs

Lindsey Jacobs