25 Best Online Marketing Degree Programs [2020 Guide]

We’ve ranked the 25 best online marketing degree programs. Compare top schools and see what you could be doing after graduation.

Online Marketing Degree

Online Marketing Degree Specializations

A bachelor’s in marketing is available in a number of specializations allowing you to focus on the field that interests you most.

Click on the area of specialty that appeals to you.

Depending on your school, these specializations might be offered as majors, minors, or just concentrations.

Marketing – General

Marketing expert doing market research on his computer

If you have a knack for salesmanship, you might benefit from an online marketing degree. It’s a non-traditional path to a career in advertising, but it will still prepare you for the challenges of the job, and it can help you qualify for high-paying work after graduation.

When you take a generalist’s track in marketing, you’ll receive a well-rounded education that prepares you with a basis in working in market research, product design, brand promotion, advertising in different forms, and press relations.


This type of degree is ideal for those who want to run a marketing department or start their own business selling specialty products. You might also pursue this degree if you want to be an independent contractor providing marketing services to other businesses.

Digital Marketing

female baker vlogging herself to market her business

Digital marketing takes place on the internet. From websites to smartphone apps, it capitalizes on the fact that more and more consumers are doing their shopping online, and it tries to reel in buyers through ads, banners, blogs, videos, and affiliate links.

Digital marketing courses can cover a wide range of topics:

  • E-commerce
  • Social media analytics
  • Viral marketing techniques
  • Web and mobile design
  • Search engine optimization (SEO)


Some people take a “jack of all trades” approach to digital marketing. Others might have sub-specialties if they’re drawn to a particular type of digital marketing such as social media marketing or search engine marketing.

There’s no right or wrong answer; it just depends on where your interests lie and what kind of job you’re hoping to get in the future.

International Business Marketing

marketing team discussing in an office

International business marketing is a broad field, and while there are a few degree programs specifically for it, it’s much more common for schools to offer a business or marketing major with a global studies concentration.

Another option is to major in global studies with side courses in communication, finance, economics, and advertising.

What can you do in the field of international business marketing? It depends on what you study.


For example, if you become an expert in cross-cultural business, you can travel overseas to help a brand launch a new product line in a foreign market. If you’re a math whiz, you can become a research analyst for a big corporation that operates in multiple countries.

Something to note is that international business marketing isn’t for rookies. It’s rare to find entry-level jobs in the field. If you’re interested in this line of work, you’ll need an advanced degree with years of experience, so prepare yourself for the long haul.

Marketing Management

team of marketing experts collaborating in an office

Marketing management is another career that will ask you to put your nose to the grindstone. The rewards are plentiful, including an average salary of $134,290 per year, but marketing managers aren’t given their positions overnight. They have to work their way up the ladder.

If you aren’t afraid of a challenge, however, you might enjoy the rigors of marketing management. You’ll be in a supervisory role, so you’ll have lots of people reporting to you. Depending on your company, your work might involve print, radio, television, or the web.


You might organize focus groups. You might analyze research data about consumer habits and market trends. You might oversee the creation of advertising campaigns for specific products.

Do you thrive under pressure? Would you love a high-stakes but high-paying job? Consider a career in marketing management.

Market Research and Analysis

marketing researchers discussing during a meeting

Market research analysts are investigators. They look at studies and statistics to figure out what buyers want, what they like and don’t like, how much they’re willing to pay, and what they think about the stores that they frequent.

You’ll need a good eye for detail as a market research analyst. Here are some of the things that you might deal with on a daily basis:

  • Graphs
  • Surveys
  • Questionnaires
  • Polls
  • Prices
  • Sales reports
  • Demographic data

It’s a lot of paperwork, but it’s lucrative. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, market research analysts are in high demand with a growth rate of 20%, which is much faster than average.

Public Relations

public relations officer talking to the phone

You might be most familiar with public relations (PR) in terms of politics, but it has a place in marketing, too. PR reps help their company manage and maintain their reputation. This is especially important in times of crisis, but it’s part of everyday business operations as well.

PR reps might have many different responsibilities. If they’re good in front of the camera, they might serve as a spokesperson for the brand.


If they’re better at working behind the scenes, they might draft press releases, run social media accounts, or coordinate with the media about announcements and conferences.

You can major in either marketing or public relations if you’re interested in this kind of work. A few schools even offer a dual degree program for both.

Social Media Marketing

social media marketers discussing in an office

Social media marketing is a fast-growing industry that’s expected to reach a total value of more than $100 billion by 2020. If you’re looking for a career with a great ROI (return on investment), this could be the one for you.

How do social media marketers spend their time? It depends on their exact job. Entry-level employees might answer tweets on the company’s account; senior employees might approve budgets for ads and affiliate links on different platforms.


Another big part of social media marketing is analyzing data. What kind of content is getting the most engagement? Where is the most traffic coming from, and what are the demographics associated with it?

Social media marketing isn’t for the technologically challenged, but if you’re an expert at online communication and interested in a job with a lot of opportunities for growth, give this one some thought.

Courses for an Online Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing

Courses for an Online Masters Degree in Marketing

While every degree program is different, there are a few topics that will pop up over and over again during your marketing education.

Here are just a few examples of what might be on your schedule.

  • Principles of Marketing: There are four cornerstones in the marketing world: product, price, place, and promotion. Known as “the four Ps,” these principles will be the foundation of just about every marketing course that you take, and you’ll explore them at length.
  • Web Analytics: You can determine the popularity of a physical store by counting the number of people who walk through the door. For an e-commerce store, you’ll need web analytics. They’re the metrics that companies use to track hits, visitors, pingbacks, and click-throughs, and they’re quite important for digital marketing.
  • Business to Business (B2B) Marketing: B2B marketing is when one company sells its products or services to another. There are some key differences in selling to a corporation versus a consumer, and B2B classes will help you understand them. They can be part of both undergraduate and graduate studies.
  • Pricing Strategy and Analytics: How much should you charge for that product? What’s the right formula to balance the costs of manufacturing, marketing, packaging, and shipping? How can you keep your prices competitive while still turning a profit? Welcome to the world of pricing strategies.
  • Consumer Behavior: Consumer behavior is the study of shoppers. Rather than being a specific class, it’s more like an entire branch of study, and you’ll probably have your pick of consumer behavior courses as you get your marketing degree. They might be requirements for your major, or they might be electives that you can take for specialties and concentrations.
  • Content Marketing: “Content” is what makes up a website, and content marketing is the art of creating and distributing it. From blog posts to splash pages, it’s one of the most important aspects of digital advertising, so expect to learn a lot about good content as you obtain your marketing degree.

They might be requirements for your major, or they might be electives that you can take for a concentration or specialization.

Traditional Marketing vs Digital Marketing

marketing experts giving out flyers and working on laptop respectively

“Traditional marketing” refers to marketing that isn’t online. This can include magazines, billboards, phone calls, television commercials, radio spots, and direct mail marketing.

By contrast, “digital marketing” takes place on the web. It includes ads, emails, pop-ups, websites, blogs, search engines, and social media posts.

There can be some crossover between traditional and digital marketing. For example, both types can make use of newsletters; it’s just that traditional newsletters are put in a mailbox while digital newsletters are sent to an inbox.

There’s an eternal debate in the business world about which type of marketing is the most effective.

The simple truth is that both methods have their pros and cons, and some people are naturally drawn to one form of marketing over another. If you’re weighing career options, you’ll need to decide for yourself which is right for you.

  • Traditional marketing: anything that isn’t online. Potential jobs include ones in print, radio, television, and outdoor advertising.
  • Digital marketing: anything that’s online. Potential jobs include things like social media coordinator, digital content creator, and search engine analyst.

Something to note is that many marketing jobs combine both traditional and digital elements. For example, a marketing manager might be expected to oversee everything in their department, including digital and non-digital ad campaigns.

What Can You Do with a Marketing Degree?

You’ll have plenty of career options with a marketing degree, especially if you’re willing to stay in school and obtain a bachelor’s or master’s degree. There are even doctorate degrees for marketing. While a PhD can’t guarantee a good job, it can significantly improve your odds.

Here are a few career paths that you might take with a marketing degree:

Search Engine Marketing Specialist

Have you ever wondered about the mechanics behind your Google searches? Marketing specialists do. In fact, there’s a whole industry devoted to search engine optimization (SEO) so that brands can get their websites on the top of search engine results.

Some of the tricks revolve around targeting certain keywords or coding websites in a specific way. Other research goes into analyzing the algorithms of search engines to stay on the cutting edge of what they deem “relevant.”

If you enjoy data crunching, you might enjoy a job with search engine optimization and its associated skills.

Media Planner

Someone has to plan all of those commercials and banner ads that you see, and it’s usually a media planner. They’re responsible for the big-picture marketing of a brand. For this reason, they’re sometimes called “brand planners” or “brand strategists.”

It’s hard to pin down the exact responsibilities of a media planner since their jobs are so flexible and versatile. They might work on a billboard one day and a social media video the next.

You’ll need plenty of imagination to be a media planner. While business sense is important too, this is definitely a job for creatives.

Social Media Manager

Social media has taken the world by storm, and it’s become an absolute necessity for modern business. Some studies suggest that as many as 74% of consumers are influenced by social media.

As you might imagine, this has caused a huge boom in social media marketing jobs as companies seek to capitalize on their influence.

You might wear many different hats as a social media manager.

You might be a customer service representative that answers questions on Twitter; you might be a creative person who dreams up different ads for Facebook and Instagram; you might be a data analyst that looks at the statistics of accounts, platforms, and customer demographics.

Social media is a field that changes by the day, so your job duties might change as well. You’ll need to stay on your toes as a social media manager.

Marketing Degree Salary

Marketing Degree Salary

Since marketing jobs can range from low-paying internships to high-paying department heads, you’ll see a wide scope of salaries within the industry. Your own salary will depend on things like your educational level and total years of experience.

  • Chief marketing officer ($172,039 per year)
  • Marketing manager ($134,290)
  • Art director ($92,780)
  • Search engine marketing specialist ($71,381)
  • Market research analyst ($63,120)
  • Digital marketing analyst ($56,378)
  • Marketing coordinator ($55,403)
  • Media planner ($55,301)
  • Mid-level marketing analyst ($55,013)
  • Promotions manager ($51,358)
  • Social media specialist ($43,787)
  • Marketing assistant ($41,827)

You should know that salaries can be different for the same job, too. A marketing manager in a big city like San Jose can make $130,738 annually, whereas a marketing manager in a smaller town like Chattanooga might only make $93,921 annually.

Marketing Professional Organizations

logos of Professional Organizations for Those with a Master's in Marketing Degree

Professional organizations can provide a lot of resources for a career-oriented student. They usually require membership dues, so they’re a bit of an investment, but they can pay for themselves in terms of workshops, seminars, academic journals, networking events, and mentorship programs.

  • American Marketing Association (AMA): an organization for marketing professionals. It offers everything from job boards to webinars focused on industry-specific topics. You’ll need to pay to join, but they offer a discounted rate for students and student groups.
  • Internet Marketing Association (IMA): for marketers who work in the digital realm. It offers many resources, including newsletters and networking events, and it even has a YouTube channel where you can watch videos about work, technology, leadership, education, and entrepreneurship.
  • Insights Association: formed by a joint effort between the Marketing Research Association and the Council of American Survey Research Organizations, the Insights Association is a high-level marketing organization. It has a steep membership cost, but you’ll get access to everything from legal advice to insurance programs.
  • Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO): for those interested in SEO. This organization conducts special studies on the market just for members, and they have monthly “chats” in the form of digital, interactive discussions with professionals from all over the world.
  • Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS): for marketers at every stage of their career. Whether you’re a first-time student or a long-time professional, they have resources that can help you achieve your next goal. Students are offered a special rate for membership.

Join one of these organizations while you’re still in school to stay abreast of industry news and to become aware of job possibilities.

Accreditation

logos of the business school accreditation boards

Accreditation is one of the first things that you should look for in a degree program of any type. If you don’t want to check schools individually, start your search with an accrediting board.

  • Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)

These are the regional boards that evaluate colleges and universities as a whole. There are also organizations that accredit business programs specifically.

Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) has accredited literally hundreds of degree programs. It specializes in business, finance, accounting, economics, marketing, and other related fields.

The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

Like its name suggests, the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) is for business schools.

A nice thing about their organization is that they’ve accredited programs at every degree level, so whether you’re thinking about an associate degree or a doctorate degree, they can point you in the right direction with their searchable database.

International Accreditation Council for Business Education

Formerly known as the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) offers accreditation for business schools of all kinds. They’re known for their high standards.

Financial Aid

screenshot of FAFSA website

Financial aid is available for qualified students.

Your first step is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) In addition to student loans, you may also qualify for grants, such as the Pell Grant.

Last but not least, if you’re already employed, ask your human resources department about tuition reimbursement. Some companies are willing to pay for their employees to get an education that will help them learn new skills or earn new certifications for the job.

Questions Related to Earning an Online Marketing Degree

Here are a few more points of interest.

What Is Marketing?

Marketing is the art of promoting something. Whether it’s a product, service, company, brand, or lifestyle, you’re trying to appeal to people and get them interested in it.

A common misconception is that marketing is about sales, but that’s not strictly true. You can “sell” an idea with no financial value, and you can “market” yourself or your interests without money being your bottom line. At its core, marketing is just about engaging people for a specific purpose.

How Do I Get a Degree in Marketing?

There are several levels for a marketing degree:

  • An associate degree in marketing is a two-year endeavor that will teach you the basics. It isn’t enough education for a high-paying marketing career, but it can qualify you for entry-level jobs, and it can get your foot in the door for further advancement.
  • A bachelor’s degree in marketing will take four years, and it’s enough for most mid- to senior-level You can work towards either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in marketing.
  • A master’s degree in marketing requires an additional 1-3 years of study after obtaining your bachelor’s degree. You can specialize in things like global marketing, social media marketing, and marketing management.
  • A doctorate degree in marketing is the highest education that you can obtain in the field. It can require anywhere from 4-8 years of additional study, so it’s quite the commitment, but it can be worth it for a highly specialized field where you need a PhD to be competitive.

Keep in mind that every level of education has its own earning potential, so it’ll be up to you to decide if the cost of an advanced degree is worth it.

Can I Get a Marketing Degree Online?

Yes, you can get a marketing degree online. With this type of program, it doesn’t matter where you’re located. You don’t have to be an in-state student, and in some cases, you won’t even have to pay out-of-state tuition rates. As long as you have an Internet connection, you can earn your degree.

Another option is a “hybrid” degree that’s partly online and partly in the classroom. You’ll need to be a resident for this one since it requires attending courses on campus. It can be a good choice if you want a traditional college experience but also desire some flexibility in your schedule.

What Kind of Jobs Can You Get with a Marketing Degree?

A marketing degree can help you land a variety of jobs in the business sector. Some of them aren’t even in advertising. Since there’s a lot of crossover between business, finance, economics, marketing, and public relations, a degree in one field is sometimes good enough for a job in another.

If you enjoy marketing for its own sake, however, there will be plenty of jobs where you can utilize a marketing degree:

  • Media planner
  • Digital marketing analyst
  • Social media manager
  • Promotions manager
  • Search engine marketing specialist
  • Project manager
  • Public relations representative
  • Market research analyst

There are many more, but they can be dependent on things like experience and skill set. For example, you won’t become a chief marketing officer (CMO) without years of managerial training.

How Much Does a Marketing Degree Cost?

According to the College Board, the average four-year degree costs around $34,740. This shakes out to $9,970 for in-state students and $25,620 for out-of-state students.

Before you write these numbers down, however, you should know that the price of a marketing degree can vary quite a bit from school to school.

Prestigious universities have a much heftier price tag than state schools, for example. Colleges with good financial aid programs will be cheaper than others. You can also save money if your school offers a dual bachelor’s and master’s degree program in marketing.

You can also save quite a bit of money if you test out of classes or can submit a portfolio to earn credit for prior learning.

List of Schools Offering Online Marketing Degree Programs

Rankings Methodology

We’ve included these universities because they’re all accredited and offer marketing degrees online.

#1  Arizona State University

Arizona State University campus

  • BS in Marketing

Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Committee of the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

#2  Bellevue University

Bellevue University campus

Bellevue University is located in Nebraska and was opened in 1966. They offer a Marketing Bachelor’s Degree, which is delivered on-campus or online.

The degree offers students the learning necessary to equip them with the ability to design data-driven marketing programs. Students will have a competitive advantage in finding a marketing job that will help them to achieve their financial goals.

  • BS in Marketing

Bellevue University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#3  Clayton State University

Clayton State University campus

  • BBA in Marketing

Clayton State University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#4  Dallas Baptist University

Dallas Baptist University campus

  • BBA in Marketing
  • BBS in Marketing

Dallas Baptist University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#5  Eastern New Mexico University

Eastern New Mexico University campus

  • BBA in Marketing

Eastern New Mexico University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#6  Florida Atlantic University

Florida Atlantic University campus

  • BBA in Marketing

FAU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#7  Florida International University

Florida International University campus

  • BBA in Marketing

Florida International University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#8  Golden Gate University

Golden Gate University campus

The Golden Gate University is a nonsectarian university that was established in 1901. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Business – Marketing program that can only be described as cutting edge.

The program is offered both online and in-person and is taught by leading practitioners and professors in the field of marketing. The program outline is designed to make use of both practical and theoretical knowledge.

  • BA in Management – Marketing
  • BS in Business – Marketing

Golden Gate University has been accredited on an institution-wide basis by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

#9  Liberty University

Liberty University campus

  • BSBA in Digital Marketing and Advertising
  • BSBA in Marketing – Sales Management and Professional Selling
  • BSBA in Marketing Analytics
  • BSBA in Strategic Marketing Management

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#10  Minot State University

Minot State University campus

  • BS in Marketing

Minot State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#11  Northwestern State University of Louisiana

Northwestern State University of Louisiana campus

  • BSBA in Marketing

Northwestern State University of Louisiana is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#12  Oklahoma State University

Oklahoma State University campus

  • BSBA in Marketing

Oklahoma State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#13  Oregon State University

Oregon State University campus

  • BABA in Digital Marketing
  • BABA in Marketing
  • BSBA in Digital Marketing
  • BSBA in Marketing

Oregon State University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

#14  Penn State World Campus

Penn State World campus

  • BS in Marketing

Penn State World Campus is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#15  Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University campus

  • BS in Marketing – Digital Marketing
  • BS in Marketing – Social Media Marketing
  • BSBA in Marketing

Southern New Hampshire University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

#16  Texas A & M University – Commerce

Texas A & M University - Commerce campus

  • BBA in Marketing

Texas A&M University – Commerce is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#17  University of Alabama – Birmingham

University of Alabama Birmingham campus

  • BS in Marketing

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#18  University of Massachusetts – Amherst

University of Massachusetts Amherst campus

  • BBA in Marketing

The University of Massachusetts Amherst is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

#19  University of Memphis

University of Memphis campus

  • BBA in Marketing Management

The University of Memphis is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

#20  University of Minnesota

University of Minnesota campus

  • BS in Marketing

The University of Minnesota is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#21  University of Texas – Permian Basin

University of Texas Permian Basin campus

  • BBA in Marketing

The University of Texas Permian Basin is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

#22  University of Wisconsin – Whitewater

University of Wisconsin Whitewater campus

  • BBA in Marketing

The University of Wisconsin – Whitewater is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.

#23  Washington State University

Washington State University campus

  • BABA in Marketing

Washington State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

#24  West Texas A & M University

West Texas AM University campus

West Texas A& M University is located in Canyon, Texas, just 13 miles south of the city of Amarillo. It is also known as WTAMU or WT.

It offers a BBA program with several options for students who want to achieve a bachelor’s degree. There are concentration options in Marketing, Management, and more

  • BBA in Marketing

West Texas A&M University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#25  Western Governors University

Western Governors University campus

  • BSBA in Marketing

Western Governors University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Is a Marketing Degree Worth It?

marketing expert talking on the phone while writing on her notebook in a cafe

Yes, a marketing degree is worth it. After graduation, you can expect to earn from $40,000 to over $100,000 depending on your job. A marketing degree can be a very good investment for someone interested in a full-time business or advertising career.

While the specifics of your job will depend on where you want to work and what you want to do, getting a degree will pad your resume, increase your earning potential, qualify you for high-level positions and teach you the skills that you’ll need to succeed. It’s worth the effort.

This article is brought to you by
Joy Mays
Joy Mays
Director
Stephen Wilson
Stephen Wilson
Editor