Courtney Herda leading a meeting at Smarter Searches


Smarter Searches is an award-winning, digital marketing agency focused on creating effective internet marketing campaigns for businesses that want to grow. We combine significant search marketing expertise with real data to generate website traffic, increase ROI, and stimulate online engagement.

We believe that good design is not a luxury good. We believe that seeking diverse perspectives and working as a team make a more successful product. We believe that you don't have to wear a suit to be serious. We focus on customers, not on trends. With our unique process of crafting customer personas, carefully studying the data, and focusing on strategic, cross-channel brand cohesion and creative, we are able to design campaigns that build your business. We focus on smarter, more strategic thinking as a way to affect change in the digital marketplace. The world is constantly changing. Your marketing has to keep up.


We are a team of strategists, creatives, thinkers, and hard workers. We approach work and play with a strong focus on strategy and experimentation, using data to drive meaningful decisions.



Online and digital media have completely transformed communications between businesses and their customers. How customers respond to and interact with marketing materials and how we define success in our marketing goals continues to evolve. We help you unlock the full potential of the internet to reach customers, according to your unique business goals, implementing and guiding online marketing strategies that bring real results.

You are likely very busy trying to do what you do best: running your business. Online marketing is time-consuming, yet unquestionably essential in today’s world. In reality, your business can’t thrive without a strong online presence. As soon as customers realize they need a service or product, they search for whatever it is they are looking to purchase online to view product reviews, consumer reports, and competitor pricing. We make sure you are not only on the front lines of the transaction but that your ad is also preferable in comparison to your competitors.

We focus on smarter, more strategic thinking as a way to affect change in the digital marketplace.

Courtney Herda smiling headshot


Founder and CEO


Courtney Herda, Founder and CEO of Smarter Searches, is a digital marketing expert and search engine optimization (SEO) guru based in Knoxville, Tennessee. With a genuine understanding of how people utilize the power of search and interact online, Courtney grew Smarter Searches rapidly from the ground up. Adept at creating successful, customized online marketing strategies to grow businesses of all sizes and improve their online presence, she has 15 years of experience in the digital marketing space. With a laser-sharp focus on developing creative, groundbreaking strategies to unite the search process, user experience, and customer engagement process, Courtney has earned numerous prestigious accolades – she was recently inducted into the Greater Knoxville Business Journal’s “40 Under 40,” and was recognized as one of the only women to earn the Pinnacle Award for “Young Entrepreneur of the Year.” Earlier in her career, Courtney served as the search engine marketing manager at media company, E.W. Scripps and for financial talk radio host and TV personality Dave Ramsey. Today, Courtney also teaches Digital Marketing Strategy at the University of Tennessee, a course that educates future marketers about how to utilize various media platforms to promote customer engagement, enhance a traditional marketing mix, and measure effectiveness.


Smarter Searches interns Allison and Noah smiling against a brick wall

Meet our amazing group of interns

At Smarter Searches, we love our interns. They are not grunts who fetch coffee or run errands or clean the bathrooms. We let them help us in actual marketing tasks and in our day-to-day work so that they get a feel for what agency life is like - the good, the bad, and the ugly. Our interns put out incredible work and touch many of the projects you see us put out, from blog posts to research to creative to organization and reporting.

Meet our two interns from the Fall of 2019 - Noah and Allison. Both are seniors at the University of Tennessee. They both have different strengths and skillsets and it's really fun to watch them figure out what they like, what they're interested in, what they're great at, and what they want to learn more about. If you're interested in our internship or learning more about Smarter Searches, send a resume and writing sample to