If you’re thinking of learning the basics of digital marketing, you might be considering Google’s Fundamentals of Digital Marketing course. After all, who knows digital better than Google? But if you’re considering other options and want to know if this course is worth your time, I’ve got a complete review for you. Keep reading to learn if this course is the right fit for your digital marketing needs.
What does the course cover?
Each lesson contains a short video (usually between two and five minutes long), followed by a short quiz. If you’re confident in your knowledge of a topic, you can skip the video lesson and complete the quiz immediately. The lessons sometimes have external links to relevant resources and further information under the videos. These links can be useful, but are often repetitive or lead to a 404 error page. Fundamentals of Digital Marketing is made up of 26 modules, divided into seven main groups. Over the course of these modules, you’ll cover the following aspects of digital marketing:
- Creating a business strategy that incorporates digital marketing
- The importance of having a website for your business
- Content marketing
- Search engine marketing (SEM)
- Search engine optimisation (SEO)
- Social media marketing
- Mobile optimisation
- Targeting local customers (a section which is aimed at companies with physical businesses)
- Email marketing
- Video content as a marketing tool
- Display advertising
- Using analytic tools to understand and measure website traffic
- Ecommerce options
If you aren’t sure what some of these topics are, don’t worry. This is a beginners course and every module starts by explaining the basics. However, it is worth noting that many of these topics are only covered in an introductory manner- you might find that you need to learn more about tactics such as email or social media marketing to feel confident.
Pros and cons of this course
- It’s free!
- You don’t have to do the entire course; you can pick and choose the models that apply to you.
- If you finish the entire course, you earn a certification from Google. Unlike other courses, you don’t have to pay to receive the certificate.
- It’s very comprehensive and will give an absolute beginner a good level of general knowledge, while also pointing them toward more specific areas that they can investigate further.
- The videos are well-made and use everyday language. Every video has subtitle options and can be watched at your preferred speed.
- It’s pretty unbiased for a course created by a private company. While the course mentions Google tools, it gives equal importance to competitors’ tools and prioritises the most relevant options rather than just their own.
- Uses real-life businesses and hypothetical scenarios to explain concepts.
- Discusses customer behaviours in relation to different tactics.
- There are several useful resources in the “additional links” sections of lessons.
- Several lessons have short exercises underneath, showing business owners how to apply the learned material to their own business.
- The videos are painfully slow to watch. Luckily, it’s easy to watch them at a faster speed. I watched the entire course at 1.5x speed, which made it much more bearable.
- The course navigation isn’t very intuitive. In order to take the quiz at the end of each section, you have to exit the module and re-enter via the main menu.
- More than once, the “correct” quiz answers were different to the information given in the course. The module quizzes don’t affect your final score and you can re-take them as many times as you like, but you do need to complete them if you want to earn the certificate. The answers are always correct, but they don’t always align with what you have learned in the lessons.
- The course introduces you to multiple digital marketing tools, but doesn’t teach you how to use any of them. I was surprised by this, especially when it came to Google’s own tools. You can take separate courses to learn these skills, but I thought this course would cover them more.
Who should do this course?
You don’t need to have any prior knowledge of digital marketing to do this course. It is, after all, focusing on the fundamentals. This course is made for absolute beginners and gives a lot of focus to people who are starting or running their own business.
This course is perfect for anyone who has no previous digital marketing experience, or who wants to brush up on the basics. A small business owner would get the most use out of this course because they can follow the recommended exercises and try out tactics in real time.
Would I recommend this course?
In a word, yes.
Fundamentals of Digital Marketing is a great starting point for anyone who wants to enter (or re-enter) the world of digital marketing. It’s easy to follow but long enough to provide a comprehensive education. You can pick and choose your modules, or put in the time and earn a Google certification. My top tip would be to turn up the video speed when watching the lessons, but other than that I think the course is done well.
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