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Most people have a general understanding of AdWords—basically, any sponsored search results on Google.

But only a few people are AdWords Champions. I, apparently, am now one of them.

That’s because I recently passed Google’s Advertising Fundamentals Exam—a rigorous, strategy-oriented test that evaluates your understanding of how to manage an AdWords campaign. You get 120 minutes to answer 120 multiple choice questions, and you need 85% correct to pass. So there’s no messing around.

Passing the exam certifies me (and Atomic) as an expert on the basic aspects of Google AdWords as well as AdWords account management and the value of search advertising.

This expertise is important because more and more businesses are using AdWords as part of their marketing campaign. Because AdWords appear immediately on Google, they’re often preferred to organic SEO for businesses who need to enhance awareness or drive sales quickly. But because AdWords are becoming so pervasive, the keyword phrases used to generate ads are getting more competitive—making clicks more expensive.

So these days, you literally can’t afford to have a half-baked AdWords strategy. You’ll blow your budget before you even get started.

Our understanding of AdWords helps you to:

  • ensure that your ads appear on page one of Google for the lowest CPC (cost per click) possible.
  • ensure that your ads have the highest CTR (click through rate) possible. The CTR is the percentage of times an add is clicked when it shows on Google.
  • ensure that your ad clicks turn into conversions – whether onsite sales, PDF downloads, or contact forms.

In short, that means you get the most bang for your AdWords bucks.

I’m now on to my next project: pursuing certification in Google Analytics. I’m hoping to take and pass that test shortly after the new year. So for the holidays this year, I guess I’ll be studying. Merry Christmas, everyone, and talk to you in the new year.

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