Of the various figures put out in Alphabet/Google’s (GOOGL) first-quarter earnings report, none looms larger than 53%. That’s the annual growth rate recorded for paid ad clicks and impressions on Google’s own sites and apps.
Let that figure sink in for a moment. Google, a company that did close to $80 billion in ad sales last year, one that’s more than a decade removed from achieving search dominance, managed to increase the number of ads it was paid for on its own properties by over 50%.
The figure says a lot about how much smartphone activity continues to grow Google’s addressable market, and how effective it has become at monetizing this activity.
Alphabet reported Q1 revenue of $24.75 billion billion (up 22% annually) and EPS of $7.73 (up 28%), topping consensus analyst estimates of $24.22 billion and $7.38. As of the time of this article, Alphabet’s Class C shares are up 4.2% to $929.00 and making new highs. They’re now up 17% on the year.
Paid clicks rose 44% overall, with the 53% growth on Google properties partly offset by the more modest 10% growth (still better than in recent quarters) on non-Google sites and apps. That figure is still better than the 39% and 32% growth respectively seen in Q4 and Q3 of last year after accounting for a change in how Google records paid clicks. Not surprisingly, CFO Ruth Porat said mobile search growth remains the biggest driver behind Google’s paid click momentum, with YouTube and programmatic (software-automated) ad sales also playing roles.