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30+ Best Free Online Marketing Classes to Take in 2024


Staying on top of the latest strategies and trends has been crucial for keeping my knowledge and skills current as a digital marketer.

Whether it’s learning new SEO techniques or understanding changing social media algorithms, free digital marketing courses have been an invaluable resource throughout my career.

→ Click here to download our free guide to digital marketing fundamentals  [Download Now].

While traditional options such as boot camps or university programs offer valuable education, they also often come with a hefty price tag. In contrast, online courses offer a more affordable and accessible alternative.

But with so many options, how do you pick the right one for you?

Table of Contents

Why take a marketing course?

While it’s possible to learn new skills through blog posts and ebooks, I’ve found that this method often leads to overwhelm.

Although these resources can be helpful, the most effective way to master a skill, in my experience, is through a structured learning process.

Instead of piecing together information haphazardly from various sources, taking a course offers a clear path forward and ensures you’re covering topics in a logical order.

Whether you’re interested in a refresher course or want to learn something new — like creating a website from scratch — taking a marketing course provides the structured guidance and expertise you need to truly learn and master a topic or skill set.

That said, not all courses are created equal. So, how do you know what courses are worth your time?

Don’t worry. I’ve done all the heavy lifting and handpicked some of the best digital marketing courses currently available.

How I Chose the Best Online Marketing Courses

The word “best” means different things to different people.

For some, it’s all about the reputation of the person or organization that created the course. For others, it might be how well a course helps to achieve a specific goal.

With these diverse definitions in mind, I’ve included a range of courses to help you find the right course for your unique interests, needs, and budget.

Also, to make it easier for you to browse through my selections, I’ve organized this roundup into broad “topic categories” and included the following criteria for each course recommendation:

    • How much the course costs. While most of the courses on this list are free, some require payments or memberships for the platforms they’re hosted on.
    • How the course is delivered. This section will provide information on how the course is formatted and delivered (video, text, audio, etc.)
    • Instructor. If you’re new to marketing, this section can help you decide whether the instructor is the best person for you to learn this topic from.
    • Required prerequisites. Most of the courses on this list have no prerequisites. That said, I’ve included a note if having some prior knowledge about the topic might improve your learning experience.
    • Certifications. For learners who prefer or require accreditation, this section will tell you whether the course offers a certificate.
    • How long it takes to complete the course. This is an estimate of how long it will take you to review the course materials. Note that in reality, this number will be highly dependent on several factors such as your current skill level, engagement with the course, whether you complete the more intensive projects or assignments, etc.
    • Who is this course for? This provides a high-level target audience for each course.
  • What the course covers. Some courses teach a range of specific skills, while others cover broad topics across multiple chapters. This section will give you a clearer picture of what each course covers.
  • Why do I recommend the course? This section will provide a quick summary of why I believe the course is worth taking.

Now let’s find the right online marketing course for you.

Free Content Marketing Courses

Successful marketing efforts begin with excellent content. Whether you’re just starting your content marketing journey or need a quick refresher, the courses below will help you up your marketing game.

1. Content Marketing Certification – HubSpot Academy

Image of the HubSpot Academy Free content marketing certification course

Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 12 lessons, 54 videos, and 11 quizzes. The program is also available in English, German, Spanish and French.

Instructor: Taught by various instructors from the HubSpot team, including content experts like AJ Beltis and Justin Champion.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: After completing this course, you can get your Content Marketing Certification by passing a one-hour exam.

Course duration: 8 hours 34 minutes

Who is this course for?

This program is perfect for anyone looking to learn the fundamentals of content marketing.

Whether you’re a marketing intern starting your first campaign, a business owner exploring new growth tactics, or a seasoned marketing professional looking to expand into content, this course will teach you how to create and implement a content marketing strategy.

What does the course cover?

The program begins with foundational lessons on content frameworks, storytelling, and idea generation. As you progress, you’ll delve into practical lessons on strategy development and content creation.

Lastly, the course concludes with in-depth sessions that explore strategies for content promotion, amplification, and optimization, ensuring you have a holistic understanding of the entire content marketing workflow.

The program includes additional resources such as a content marketing workbook and quizzes to test your knowledge of the course material. It also incorporates expert insights and real-world examples to offer practical strategies that can be directly applied to your content marketing projects.

Finally, alongside the course material, you’ll also gain access to an exclusive online content marketing study group with over 18,000 members.

Why do I recommend this course?

This marketing course offers direct, clear, and easy-to-understand lessons.

It’s also incredibly comprehensive, which means that even an absolute beginner will walk away understanding how to manage an entire content marketing campaign effectively.

The HubSpot Academy also has over 550 five-star reviews on G2, with many learners praising the programs for their relevance, usefulness, and timeliness.

2. Copyblogger Academy

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to advanced

Cost: $199 for a yearly membership which provides access to training, masterclasses, and tools. Cancel at any time.

Format: Includes a training library and live monthly masterclasses.

Instructor: Taught by instructors from the Copyblogger team and external experts such as Steph Smith and Jacob McMillen.

Prerequisites: Your learning experience will go much smoother if you’re already a competent writer.

Certifications: No

Course duration: Self-paced training available year-long.

Who is this course for?

This course is great for marketers who are already proficient in writing but want to understand how to develop and implement a proper content marketing framework.

What does the course cover?

The course covers three key skills for successful content marketing: strategy, traffic generation, and audience engagement. You’ll learn these skills through a mix of courses like “Content Marketing Mastery,” “Creative Foundations,” and “Content Marketing Bootcamp.”

You’ll also have the opportunity to attend expert-led live classes and participate in personalized “hot seat” sessions.

Overall, the course is designed to help learners develop a strategy that fits their business goals and learn how to use technology (specifically automation) to grow their audience.

Why do I recommend this course?

While the course content on its own is pretty great, a standout feature of this program is the “built-in” mastermind.

This feature provides a valuable community of like-minded individuals who can offer ongoing support and share timely insights.

This makes it a great choice for people who are looking to connect with others in the field, expand their network, and gain diverse perspectives.

3. The Strategy of Content Marketing by Copyblogger and UC Davis

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Quick Overview

Level: Intermediate

Cost: Free with a 7-day free trial or $59 a month for a Coursera Plus subscription.

Format: Includes five modules with a combination of videos, assessments, and readings.

Instructor: Taught by instructors from the Copyblogger team and external experts such as Steph Smith and Jacob McMillen.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: A certificate of completion is available.

Course duration: Approximately five weeks of study if you dedicate two to three hours per week or three weeks of study if you dedicate six hours per week.

Who is this course for?

This is primarily a “strategy-focused” course, which makes it great for learners looking for a more actionable, clinical approach to structuring and managing a content marketing campaign.

What does the course cover?

This course is a collaboration between UC Davis and Copyblogger designed to help you use content marketing to generate leads effectively.

It covers a range of topics, from the basics of content creation to developing strategies, mapping out customer journeys, and managing your content.

It’s worth noting that this course is rated 4.5 with over 4,000 reviews and is taught by Sonia Simone — who brings a wealth of experience as a co-owner of The Offer Accelerator, a founding partner of Copyblogger, and an independent content marketing coach.

Another standout feature of this course is its active discussion forums, where you can engage with other learners, troubleshoot issues, and build your network.

Here you’ll have the opportunity to participate in discussions and complete assignments, such as sharing a website for feedback from your peers.

It’s important to note that while this course provides a solid foundation in content marketing, you may need to supplement your learning with additional resources if you’re looking for the latest trends and cutting-edge topics.

Why do I recommend this course?

This is just one of many excellent courses you can use to supercharge your marketing.

Coursera offers a wealth of content marketing classes — so many that it might be dizzying to the first-time entrant.

For example, once you’ve finished this course, you may want to try Viral Marketing and How to Craft Contagious Content next.

If you’ve ever come across a piece of viral content and wondered how you can create something similar, this Wharton-taught course is for you.

4. Copywriting For Beginners: How To Write Web Copy That Sells Without Being Cheesy

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free with a 7-day trial or $32 a month.

Format: Includes 17 video lessons.

Instructor: Taught by Jesse Forest, a professional copywriter, educator, and the founder of Copywriting Crew.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: No

Course duration: Should take approximately one hour to complete.

Who is this course for?

This course is great for beginners looking for a resource that covers fundamental copywriting principles.

If you’re someone who struggles with “blank screen anxiety,” this course is a great resource for developing the skills and techniques to overcome it.

What does the course cover?

Copywriting is the lifeblood of any content marketing effort. It‘s the art of crafting compelling messages that resonate with your audience and drive them to take action.

In this course, you’ll dive deep into the basics of copywriting, tailored for online marketing.

The course is specifically designed to help you stand out in your niche. You’ll learn strategies to ensure that your message cuts through the noise, captivates your audience, and leaves a lasting impression.

One of the highlights of this course is the hands-on project and worksheet included to help you practice and apply what you’ve learned.

This practical approach ensures that you not only understand the concepts but can also confidently implement them in your marketing efforts.

Finally, more than half of the learners who have completed the course say it exceeds expectations. They specifically highlight the practical examples, clear explanations, and engaging teaching style as standout features.

Why do I recommend this course?

Jesse’s course offers a quick introduction to the core principles of copywriting that sell products and services. If you’re new to writing for business, this is an excellent way to learn the basics of copywriting.

5. Content Marketing for B2B Enterprises

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Quick Overview

Level: Intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Divided into six sections with a total of 19 video lectures.

Instructor: Taught by William Flanagan, the Founder and CEO of Audienti.

Prerequisites: Experience with social networks and search engines, moderate understanding of marketing concepts, and user-based experience with analytics platforms like Google Analytics.

Certifications: The free course doesn’t include a certificate, but you can get a certificate of completion with the paid version of the course.

Course duration: 35 minutes

Who is this course for?

If you’re part of a B2B company and you’d like a glimpse into the inner workings of an actual content marketing strategy, this course is a must.

What does the course cover?

This course covers several aspects of building a content marketing system, such as understanding your target market, creating engaging content (even in less exciting industries), and building a system for continuous improvement.

It also covers topics like content types, managing a content calendar, finding promotional channels and influencers, etc.

Additionally, the course offers a practical learning experience by showcasing the content marketing process that William’s company, Audienti, uses to drive B2B lead generation.

Why do I recommend this course?

It can be tough to get B2B-specific instruction on content marketing. This is because the specifics are unique for each business, and some leaders are hesitant to share their best strategies.

However, this evergreen course offers an excellent set of tools for B2B marketers to refine their understanding of this approach to content.

Pro tip: If you liked this Udemy course, you might also want to check out Copywriting Quick Start: Top FREE Writing Tools & Hacks. This course will cover hacks to help you write winning pages, posts, and articles from headline to conclusion.

Free Social Media Marketing Courses

If you‘re not currently using social media as a marketing tool, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity.

Unlike traditional marketing channels, social media provides a unique immediacy that allows you to interact with your audience in real time and capitalize on emerging trends as they unfold.

However, it’s crucial to understand that each social platform operates differently, with its algorithms and “etiquette,” so to speak.

For example, I’ve found that Instagram content is typically more focused on visual storytelling and aesthetics, while Facebook is a bit more versatile, allowing for a mix of content types.

The courses listed below will help you master various aspects of social media, from strategy to metrics. Some of the courses also focus on a single platform, which is great if you’re looking to deep dive into a specific social media channel.

6. Social Media Strategy – Hubspot Academy

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 38 videos and 29 quizzes to test your social media acumen.

Instructor: Taught by twenty professionals, including Mari Smith, Christina Garnett, and Ai Addyson-Zhang.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: After completing this course, you can get your Social Media Certification by passing a one-hour exam.

Course duration: This course includes over five hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This course is great for anyone looking to learn social media marketing fundamentals.

Whether you‘re an influencer, a small business owner, or a social media marketer, you’ll find valuable insights here to help you create a strong social media strategy.

What does the course cover?

This free certification course teaches you how to leverage social media to boost your brand, attract new customers, and forge meaningful online connections.

It covers the fundamentals of social media strategies and management, including media monitoring, social media advertising, and measuring social ROI.

This program is also highly praised by professionals and college marketing programs alike.

Additionally, HubSpot Academy offers over 90 lessons on current and related topics beyond the certification course.

Why do I recommend this course?

This is one of several globally-recognized marketing certifications from HubSpot.

You can jump into your social media certification or start with platform-specific learning. For example, HubSpot’s free Instagram training course offers lessons on Instagram strategy, attracting followers, content, and more.

Whether you’re a beginner or just want to refresh your certification, this is an exceptional online marketing course.

7. How to Use TikTok for Business

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 36 video lessons split into three sections. The paid version of the course also includes instructor Q&A and direct messaging.

Instructor: Taught by Scott D. Clary, a marketing executive and host of the Success Story podcast.

Prerequisites: Access to a smartphone.

Certifications: While the free course doesn’t include a certificate of completion, you can get a certificate with the paid version of the course.

Course duration: This course includes almost two hours of content.

Who is this course for?

Marketers or business owners who want to understand how to leverage short-form video content. While this course focuses on TikTok, the learnings should be transferable across multiple short-form video platforms.

What does the course cover?

The course starts with the basics. It kicks off with essential TikTok marketing principles and then dives deep into various strategies tailored to the platform.

You’ll get a walkthrough of TikTok‘s interface, which will help you learn about core functionalities and how to navigate the platform. You’ll also learn how to create your first TikTok video, leverage the “Discover” tab for marketing, and engage users with hashtag challenges.

The course then offers more advanced topics such as navigating premium tools and services, understanding TikTok Ads policies, etc.

All that said, it’s important to note that critical reviews mention a lack of practical examples and techniques for increasing visibility on the platform.

Why do I recommend this course?

Clear instructions, like the ones provided in this course, are helpful when you’re first learning a social platform. This is a great course to begin your TikTok education, as it provides a solid foundation you can then build on.

8. Diploma in Social Media Strategy

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 14 learning modules that include videos, quizzes, and online chat support.

Instructor: There is limited information about who teaches this course.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: This online marketing course offers a CPD-accredited diploma. While the course is free, there is a charge for the diploma.

Course duration: This course should take 10-15 hours to complete.

Who is this course for?

This course is perfect for people looking for a more well-rounded understanding of social media.

It not only prepares learners for a social media strategist role but also teaches cross-over skills such as community management and social media customer service.

What does the course cover?

This course takes a more holistic approach to teaching about social media.

It covers a wide range of topics, from the evolution of social media to social media policy and, of course, more practical topics like market analysis and marketing strategies.

Overall, you’ll learn how to set goals, select platforms, craft content, analyze marketing personas, and launch successful campaigns.

Why do I recommend this course?

This course is helpful for learners who like to learn about a topic from many different angles. This course covers social media history, career expectations, community management, and more.

9. Meta Social Media Marketing Professional Certificate

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free with a 7-day free trial or $59 a month for a Coursera Plus subscription.

Format: This certification includes six courses.

Instructor: The professor for this course is Anke Audenaert, an experienced educator, digital marketer, and CEO.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: Upon completion, you’ll receive a professional certificate and the Meta Digital Marketing Associate Certification.

Course duration: Requires 30+ hours to complete.

Who is this course for?

This is a great course for anyone looking to break into social media as a social media manager, specialist, or coordinator.

What does the course cover?

This program provides a path for launching a professional career in social media. It covers the fundamentals of digital marketing and then drills down into creating social media campaigns on the major social media platforms.

In this certification, you’ll learn how to successfully manage a social media account for a brand (or yourself) and drive traffic — both organically and through ads. The course also includes several applied projects to ensure you’re practicing these skills and building a portfolio.

Why do I recommend this course?

This social media marketing course is a professional-level course from one of the top social media platforms. Plus, it’s available in 22 different languages and rated 4.9/5 with over 16,000 reviews.

10. Become a Social Media Marketer – LinkedIn Learning

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free with a one-month trial or $19.99 a month for an annual subscription.

Format: This course is a compilation of videos from different online teachers curated for this topic. You can view most videos on a tablet or phone as well as your desktop or laptop computer.

Instructor: Taught by five instructors who collectively have several years of professional marketing and social media management experience.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: After completing this course, you get a LinkedIn certificate of completion.

Course duration: This course includes just over six hours of content.

Who is this course for?

If you’re looking to learn from experts across certain niches or subjects rather than a single instructor, this might be the course for you. If you’re also looking for a shiny LinkedIn credential to display on your profile, this course is also for you.

What does the course cover?

This course is essentially a collection of videos organized into a single “learning path”.

It currently offers seven lessons on the following topics: social media marketing foundations, social media strategy and optimization, copywriting for social media, social media management skills, content creation, short-form video content, and storytelling.

Individual videos have a Q&A tab where learners can ask questions or share insights. The average learner review rating for videos in this course is also pretty high (4.7), with comments being generally positive.

Why do I recommend this course?

This is a basic compilation of videos you can watch any time during your free trial. It‘s best for social media beginners who are just beginning to understand social media marketing. It’s also a good introduction to developing social media skills and strategies.

Free SEO Marketing Courses

Your superb content is only effective if users can find it. That’s why search engine optimization (SEO) is so important.

But mastering SEO goes beyond just targeting the right keywords; it’s about understanding the intent behind each search term and creating content that satisfies that intent.

Moreover, SEO is a field that’s constantly evolving. As search engines update their algorithms, we marketers also need to adapt our strategies accordingly.

Learn SEO best practices with the courses below.

11. SEO Training Certification — HubSpot Academy

 Image of the HubSpot Academy free SEO training certification

Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Includes six lessons with 26 videos and five quizzes to confirm understanding.

Instructor: Taught by instructors from the HubSpot team, including experts like Matthew Howells-Barby and Rachel Sheldon.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: After completing this course, you can get your SEO Certification by passing a one-hour exam.

Course duration: This course includes four hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This is a great course if you have experience running or managing SEO programs and are looking to upskill or simply improve your existing knowledge.

What does the course cover?

Whether you’re a general marketer looking to strengthen your SEO skills or a professional applying for SEO marketing roles, you can create a strong foundation with HubSpot Academy’s SEO Training Certification.

It covers all facets of the discipline — from on-page optimization to SEO reporting.

Why do I recommend this course?

Instead of focusing on a single aspect of SEO, this course covers a range of SEO skills. Instructors present every lesson in a friendly and transparent way. This encourages learners to keep exploring the topics that are most useful to them.

12. SEO Training Course by Moz

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Quick Overview

Level: Intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 18 video lectures.

Instructor: There is limited information about who teaches this course.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: Like other Udemy courses, you’re not able to get a certificate with the free course. That said, you can get a certificate of completion with the paid version of the course.

Course duration: This course offers almost four hours of instructional content.

Who is this course for?

This is a great course for anyone generally interested in learning about SEO. That said, if you’re looking for some light learning, this might not be the course for you.

What does the course cover?

This SEO training course by Moz is a great mix of technical and fundamental SEO topics.

It teaches foundational skills like keyword research and on-page SEO while also including less talked about skills like site auditing and off-page SEO.

This course also delves a bit deeper into specific topics than most courses. For example, rather than broadly covering the subject of keyword selection, a lecture might introduce strategies like building a keyword map.

Why do I recommend this course?

Although this course covers the fundamentals excellently, it also includes some advanced strategies and tasks.

13. SEO Specialization

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to advanced

Cost: Free with a 7-day free trial or $59 a month for a Coursera Plus subscription.

Format: Five-course series with lectures, readings, and assignments.

Instructor: Taught by Eric Enge and Rebekah May.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: Offers the option to complete a career certificate.

Course duration: Flexible schedule, but the recommended timeline is three months, 10 hours per week.

Who is this course for?

This is a great program for anyone who wants to learn SEO, but it’ll be especially helpful if you intend to run SEO operations for a third party (like a client).

What does the course cover?

Created by UC Davis, this SEO course is a great program for anyone looking to learn how to optimize their web content and rank higher in the search results.

Specifically, you’ll learn how Google ranks websites, which factors it takes into account, and which other branches of marketing — such as content marketing — can help you rank better.

Why do I recommend this course?

This SEO course is a big time investment, but if you want to learn as much as you can about Google-specific SEO, this course is for you.

Besides SEO concepts, it also covers skill sets like competitive web page analysis, developing influencer relationships, and local SEO.

14. Yoast SEO Academy

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free or $99 a year for Yoast SEO Premium.

Format: Combines video lectures with readings and quizzes. It also includes lists of terms, which is a helpful addition for beginners.

Instructor: There is limited information about who teaches this course.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: A certificate of completion is available upon completion of each course.

Course duration: Different for every course included in the academy. For example, the “What is SEO?” course has about five hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This is a great program for anyone with a website built on WordPress.

What does the course cover?

The academy offers a range of courses. You’ll find comprehensive courses such as the “All Round SEO Training” and specialized courses such as the “Keyword Research Training.”

If you’re also looking for platform/tool-specific training, the academy offers multiple WordPress and Yoast courses.

Overall, if you use WordPress and want to learn more about SEO on the platform, these courses are an exceptional place to start.

Why do I recommend this course?

Yoast’s Academy is a fantastic choice for current WordPress developers looking to build their SEO skills. It’s also an excellent resource for SEO professionals who might be looking to specialize in working on WordPress websites.

15. Content SEO

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Quick Overview

Level: Intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Eight sections that include video lectures, practical assignments, test assignments, and a final test.

Instructor: Taught by Joe Williams, founder and content creator for Tribe SEO and a contributor to Search Engine Watch.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: This course offers a certificate of completion.

Course duration: This course offers 2+ hours of content.

Who is this course for?

If you’re looking for an actionable, hands-on resource for learning SEO, this will likely be a great fit.

What does the course cover?

Content SEO is designed to teach anyone to write content that both people and search engines will love.

In this course, you‘ll master a variety of crucial skills for creating and optimizing content. You’ll discover how to conduct keyword research and choose topics that appeal to users at various stages of the buying process.

Additionally, you’ll learn the art of crafting SEO-friendly content and measuring its performance.

The course also provides hands-on learning through practical assignments and exercises, like optimizing a content page using specific instructions.

Why do I recommend this course?

This online marketing course combines content marketing with another highly-valued skill, SEO. This combination helps learners make the most of their learning time and combines a range of important skill sets.

Free Email Marketing Courses

Are some of your emails feeling a little lackluster? I’ve got you covered.

The courses highlighted below will teach you everything you need to know to create standout email campaigns.

16. Email Marketing Course – Hubspot Academy

Image of the HubSpot Academy free email marketing certification

Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: This course includes 31 videos and nine quizzes.

Instructor: Taught by Christine Lee, a member of the HubSpot Academy team.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: After course completion, you can get your Email Marketing Certification by passing a one-hour exam.

Course duration: This course offers four hours of learning content.

Who is this course for?

Consider this course if you’re looking to develop a holistic understanding of email marketing.

What does the course cover?

HubSpot Academy’s Email Marketing Certification is structured to provide value for both beginner and intermediate email marketers.

For example, if you’re a beginner, you’ll likely find the lessons on email design, copy, and contact management interesting. Meanwhile, an intermediate learner will likely find more value in the lessons about email strategy, personalization, automation, and analytics.

Overall, this is a comprehensive course that teaches you how to think about and execute an email marketing campaign.

Why do I recommend this course?

This completely free online marketing course helps beginners learn fundamentals and get a sense of the quickest ways to improve their strategy.

The easy access you have in HubSpot Academy also makes it easy to return and repeat lessons when you get stuck applying what you’ve learned.

17. Think Outside the Inbox by Google

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to intermediate

Cost: Free with a 7-day free trial or $59 a month for a Coursera Plus subscription.

Format: Four sections, which include a total of 38 videos, 37 readings, 20 quizzes, and five assessments.

Instructor: There is limited information about who teaches this course.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: This course is included in the Google Digital Marketing & E-commerce Professional Certificate.

Course duration: This course includes 25 hours of content.

Who is this course for?

If you’re looking for an actionable resource that walks you through how to launch, run, and optimize email campaigns, this might be a good fit.

What does the course cover?

This course from Google Career Certificates is a fantastic way to build foundational knowledge on the topic of email marketing.

You’ll not only learn how email marketing adds to a digital marketing strategy but also how to test, write, and optimize email campaigns. You’ll also learn how to track email success.

Why do I recommend this course?

It‘s a comprehensive email marketing course from a trusted source for educational content. While this course is quite comprehensive, it’s also offered with a flexible schedule if you have a Coursera subscription.

This means that you can learn at your own pace.

18. Email Marketing Unlocked

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Quick Overview

Level: Intermediate to advanced

Cost: Free

Format: Includes five video lectures, templates, and worksheets.

Instructor: Taught by Neil Patel.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: No certificate options, instead the emphasis is on business results.

Course duration: This course offers about four hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This course is ideal for intermediate-to-advanced email marketers looking to improve their workflows and boost their ROI.

What does the course cover?

The focus of this course is to teach you strategies and tactics to grow your email lists. You’ll learn how to set up workflows and sequences, test and tweak them, identify what’s working, and calculate the lifetime value of your emails.

Why do I recommend this course?

These videos, worksheets, and templates are super helpful if you understand the principles of email optimization but are having a tough time putting them into practice.

Free Web Development and Site Design Courses

While web development and design don‘t have to be areas of expertise for marketers, knowing the basics can be incredibly helpful in day-to-day work — especially if you’re handling content uploads yourself.

As a marketer, it’s also becoming more important to familiarize yourself with HTML and CSS, as these languages are the foundation of many marketing tools.

Here are some of my top picks to help you get started or brush up on your knowledge.

19. CodeAcademy Web Development Catalogue

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to advanced

Cost: From $0 to $15.99 monthly.

Format: Each course combines written lessons, projects, and quizzes in an interactive online space. This helps you practice concepts as you learn them.

Instructor: This may vary by course.

Prerequisites: This may vary by course.

Certifications: Certificates are available with paid plans.

Course duration: Varies by topic. For example, the “Learn HTML” course takes approximately nine hours to complete.

Who is this course for?

Code Academy is a great resource if you’re also looking to modify code when you upload content or build web pages such as landing pages.

What does the course cover?

CodeAcademy is an excellent resource. You can either pick a potential career path or dive into individual courses, such as the ones below:

Not sure where to start? Web development languages such as HTML and CSS are useful for most marketing and content management roles. Python is another great language for data analysis.

Why do I recommend this course?

This course offers a simple way to learn the sometimes complex art of coding.

These courses are an excellent resource for all levels and interests, with lots of attention to detail for meeting learner needs.

20. Dash by General Assembly

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free

Format: Offers a series of projects for learners to complete.

Instructor: There is limited information about who teaches this course.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: No certificate options.

Course duration: This may vary by course.

Who is this course for?

This is a great resource for hands-on learners.

What does the course cover?

Dash offers lessons in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. You’ll learn how to build a website, design a landing page, create a blog theme, and even build a CSS robot.

But what makes this platform special is that rather than learning these skills through theory, Dash provides an interactive format that allows you to learn by building and practicing.

Why do I recommend this course?

This is a great way to learn coding, especially if you’re someone who needs to immediately apply new knowledge practically.

Free Online Advertising & PPC Courses

While organic traffic is great, running paid ads is a great complementary strategy to provide an immediate boost in visibility and traffic.

That said, whether you‘re diving into pay-per-click ads on Google or exploring options on your preferred social media platform, it’s important to learn how to get the most out of your ad spend.

The courses below will not only help you create your first paid campaign but also optimize any existing campaigns you might currently have running.

21. Digital Advertising Certification – HubSpot Academy

Image of the HubSpot Academy free digital advertising certification

Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 34 videos and 10 quizzes.

Instructor: Taught by instructors from the HubSpot team, including Corey Braccialini and Dayne Topkin.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: On course completion, you can complete a one-hour exam to achieve your Digital Advertising Certification.

Course duration: This course offers over three hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This is a great foundational course if you’re new to digital advertising.

What does the course cover?

This course offers lessons to help learners create ad campaigns, implement best practices, and optimize campaign performance.

Essentially, it’ll teach you how to develop and manage a digital advertising strategy. Besides covering the fundamental knowledge you need to begin digital advertising, this course also niches down into specific subtopics and platforms, such as social media advertising and paid search advertising.

Why do I recommend this course?

Advertising can be a difficult topic, especially for beginners.

Is it expensive? What is the best place to advertise? How do you run these ads? It can quickly become confusing.

This course is a great resource because it’ll comprehensively answer most of your questions as a beginner. Additionally, when you’re ready to build on that knowledge, you can dive into more niche courses on the platform, such as:

22. PPC University

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free

Format: Delivered through a series of ebook guides.

Instructor: There is limited information about who teaches this course.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: This course doesn’t offer a certificate.

Course duration: Varies by learner.

Who is this course for?

This library will be an invaluable resource for marketers who manage PPC campaigns and need actionable resources on niche topics.

What does the course cover?

WordStream’s PPC University is one of the most thorough pay-per-click courses on this list. It currently contains more than fifty self-paced lessons on online advertising — specifically social and search pay-per-click advertising.

It also offers an advanced PPC course that covers topics such as remarketing, dynamic search ads, bidding strategies, etc.

Why do I recommend this course?

The course format makes it easy to refer to each lesson whenever you need to troubleshoot issues in your role as a PPC manager.

23. PPC Fundamentals

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner to intermediate

Cost: Free

Format: Includes 36 short videos and tests at the end of sections.

Instructor: Taught by Joel Bondorowsky.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: After completing this course you have three chances to complete an exam for a Semrush Academy certificate.

Course duration: This course offers over three hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This is an actionable course for learners looking to run end-to-end PPC campaigns either as specialists or for their businesses.

What does the course cover?

This pay-per-click course from Semrush is an excellent alternative to WordStream if you prefer video-based learning.

In this course, you’ll not only learn the fundamentals of PPC platforms, funnels, and channels, but you’ll also delve into the nitty-gritty of setting up and running a successful campaign.

For example, you’ll cover topics such as building keyword lists, testing your first ads, setting up your data feed, running PLA campaigns, etc.

Why do I recommend this course?

The structure of this course makes it simple to skip certain sections and focus on the topics you’re most interested in.

The lesson transcripts and related materials are also great features that appeal to a range of different learning styles and needs.

24. Copywriting 101: Crafting Your First Ad Campaign

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free with a 7-day trial or $32/month.

Format: Includes seven lessons in video format and an ad campaign project to apply your new knowledge.

Instructor: Taught by Heather Baldock, a copywriter with seven years of ad agency experience

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: This course does not offer a certificate.

Course duration: This course offers almost an hour of content.

Who is this course for?

This is a hands-on course specifically for people interested in learning how to create ad copy.

What does the course cover?

This course will introduce you to the basic principles of copywriting for advertisements.

You’ll be working on creating an integrated ad campaign that includes components such as TV scripts and a brand manifesto.

At the end of the course, you should have a mock portfolio and a foundational understanding of how to craft good copy.

Why do I recommend this course?

This quick class not only teaches useful skills for ad campaigns but also helps you take a concrete step toward breaking into the industry.

Free Affiliate Marketing Course

Affiliate marketing is a great way for businesses to generate leads and sales by tapping into someone else’s audience.

If you’re a freelancer creating an affiliate website or a marketer running an affiliate program, this course is an excellent place to begin.

25. Affiliate Marketing for Beginners

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Quick Overview

Level: Beginner

Cost: Free

Format: Includes seven video lectures and free resources.

Instructor: Taught by Tyler Stokes, an affiliate marketer with 10 years of experience.

Prerequisites: None

Certifications: You can earn a certificate of completion with the paid version of this course.

Course duration: This course offers over three hours of content.

Who is this course for?

This is an excellent introduction to affiliate marketing, particularly for beginners. If you have no prior knowledge or experience with affiliate marketing, this is a great resource to kickstart your journey.

What does the course cover?

This course will walk you through building an affiliate marketing website, choosing a profitable niche, working with affiliate networks, and maximizing profits from your website. It also offers two bonus lectures and free resources.

Why do I recommend this course?

When you‘re learning a new topic, like affiliate marketing, it’s helpful to have a framework to follow until you’re comfortable enough with the topic to create your strategies. This course is simple and easy to understand, which makes it a great online course to learn affiliate marketing.

Other Free Marketing Courses

Now that we’ve covered some marketing basics, it’s time to have a little fun.

Graphic Design Courses

Even if you‘re already a wiz at creating content or copy, knowing how to create high-quality graphics is always a useful skill.

Whether it’s designing an infographic for a blog post or creating visuals for an ad, these courses will teach you how to create high-converting designs.

Where to start: The Canva Design Basics Course

I’ve used Canva for everything from creating logos to designing Twitter headers. The design course is a great place to start because you can implement what you’ve learned using Canva.

The course itself is also great because it teaches you the fundamentals with an emphasis on how to communicate effectively through your designs.

Experiential Marketing Courses

Experiential marketing is an effective and personable way to connect with potential customers and generate leads. Learn how to create a winning in-person or virtual event with the following courses:

Where to start: If you’re serious about becoming an experiential marketer, try Meeting Professionals International’s certification. If you’re looking to simply learn more about the topic, Udemy’s course makes for an excellent foundation.

Getting a Digital Marketing Certificate

If you’d like to validate your understanding of the subject matter in addition to learning, taking a certification course is the way to go.

Here are some of the benefits of earning a digital marketing certificate:

Benefits of a Digital Marketing Certificate

The most well-known benefit of earning a marketing certificate is the potential for better pay and career advancement, but there are plenty more rewards to reap by honing your skills.

1. Specialize in a marketing niche.

Choosing a marketing niche allows you to focus your learning in a specific area. Getting certified in that niche is also one of the easier ways of standing out and demonstrating expertise in an otherwise crowded industry.

But even solely from a learner’s perspective, certifications are great because they’re broad enough in scope to give you a high-level overview of how the skill fits into a larger marketing strategy and tactical enough to show you exactly how to execute the skill in your day-to-day work.

2. Communicate advanced marketing concepts.

Whether you’re interviewing for a marketing role or pitching a client, one thing’s for sure — you’ll need to sound like a skilled marketer.

Sure, you can fake it ‘till you make it, but it will only get you so far before someone notices a gap in your experience.

Certification courses are comprehensive education tools that will teach you essential marketing lingo and exactly what it all means.

Best of all, you’ll be able to communicate advanced concepts confidently without over or under-explaining, which can undermine your credibility.

3. Build your resume.

When it comes down to it, your resume will almost always precede your presence.

Before an interview or a client meeting, people will look at your resume and portfolio first to verify your skills.

Adding the certifications you’ve received after completing marketing courses is a smart way to get picked up by resume scanners and catch the attention of human eyes, too.

Even if you have several years of experience, a certificate can still help get your foot in the door so you can speak in detail about your experience during an interview.

You not only get the benefits of learning a new skill but also the credibility of completing a course from an industry-recognized institution.

Free Marketing Certifications

While I’ve already covered some certifications throughout this post, here are my top picks for the best free marketing certifications you can get online.

Where to start: HubSpot Academy’s Inbound Marketing Certification is an all-around effective primer for any marketing role. But if you’re specifically interested in digital marketing, try Google Digital Garage’s digital marketing course.

Where to Find Online Marketing Courses

The courses I mentioned above are amazing resources for budget-conscious marketers. They’ll teach you the basics of the subject and give you some tactical knowledge you can apply right away.

However, if you want to become more competitive in the job market or simply have a bit more time or resources to dedicate to furthering your education, check out the following platforms. They’re not all free, but they’re affordable and will provide you with up-to-date course material.

1. HubSpot Academy

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The HubSpot Academy offers certification and training courses to teach people how inbound marketing and the HubSpot platform work. Classes are often taught by marketers at HubSpot and are made up of video lessons, quizzes, and tests.

Most HubSpot Academy classes are available free of charge, and if you pass the certifications, you get a nifty certificate and badge to share on your social media profiles.

2. Coursera

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Coursera offers MOOCs (massive online open courses) created and taught online by universities such as Northwestern University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of California system.

The platform also currently offers professional digital marketing certifications by Google, Meta, IBM, and Unilever. These typically include a bundle of courses that cover a range of topics and can be completed in two to six months.

3. Udemy

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Udemy is an online learning platform that focuses specifically on courses related to skill-building for working professionals.

Currently, the platform offers over 5,000 free courses and a myriad of paid options for as little as $10 in some cases. It’s important to note, however, that some free courses may require a Pro membership to get an official certificate.

Pro tip: If you have a good experience with a free course, try a paid one to get even more value from the content on this site.

4. edX

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edX is another MOOC provider that features free courses offered by top-tier universities, including Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Boston University.

Like Coursera, classes are taught online and start at specific times throughout the year.

5. LinkedIn Learning (formerly Lynda.com)

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LinkedIn Learning hosts hundreds of courses taught by industry experts from all around the world. The great thing about this platform is that if you have a LinkedIn account, the course suggestions are customized to your profile.

For instance, if you have content marketing as a skill in your LinkedIn profile, the algorithm will suggest courses related to this subject. Similarly, the algorithm will also consider your role when making suggestions.

For example, as a marketing writer, I get recommended courses on copywriting, SEO, social media marketing, etc.

6. Alison

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Alison offers over 4,000 online classes in various professional skills users can take at their own pace. This content repository includes courses that lead to certificates and diplomas — you choose which is best for your goals.

For an even more rigorous curriculum, you can choose a learning path that combines several lessons and courses into one learning track that gives you a well-rounded learning experience.

7. Meta Blueprint

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You probably already know what Meta is (formerly Facebook) and what it does. What you might not know is that Meta also offers training and certification programs through the Meta Blueprint platform.

Meta Blueprint offers self-paced and live courses for marketers seeking to grow their organizations using Facebook and Instagram.

While the course materials are free, the platform also offers paid certifications which range between $99 and $150.

8. Grow with Google

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Google’s learning platform offers a range of courses. For digital marketing specifically, the platform currently offers 15+ online courses on a range of topics, from social media to Google Ads training.

You can also earn a certificate upon completion of certain courses like the Fundamentals of Digital Marketing course.

It’s important to note that while most of these courses are self-paced, some are delivered live, which means you’ll need to RSVP and make time to attend the live session.

Become a Marketing Powerhouse with These Free Certifications

I’m sure all marketers (myself included) can agree that furthering our education in this field is a worthwhile way to advance our careers or businesses.

Whether you want to take a free online marketing class or devote more time and resources to a paid one, by taking any of the courses on this list, you’ll be well on your way to success as a consummate marketer.

Editor’s Note: This blog post was originally published in May 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness and freshness.

Start the free Content Marketing Certification course from HubSpot Academy.

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