As you know, we go on and on (and on) about Google here on the WebEden blog. This is for two main reasons. First, Google is the best known Internet company, so to some extent symbolises the growth of the web. Second, if you’re building a website you need to know about Google, since it will be the biggest single source of traffic to your website. If Google succeeds at anything, it’s generally going to be a good thing for anyone wanting to drive traffic to their website.
So it has raised some eyebrows here that Google has registered its first quarter on quarter revenue fall in its short 11 year life. For the first three months of this year Google took $5.51bn, down 3% on the last three months of 2008.
So is this the end of the boom time for Google, an indicator of the maturation of the Internet as a business channel?
The short answer is probably not. First off, we’re told that we are going through the biggest recession since the 30s, so it would be strange for Google to be totally unaffected. And it’s an indicator of Google’s phenomenal growth rate that despite this fall revenues were still up 6% year on year. And then of course there is profit: Google turned a profit of $1.4bn on this revenue, up almost 9% on the previous year and a huge margin for any company.
“These results underline both the resilience of our business model and the ongoing potential of the web as users and advertisers shift online.” commented Google CEO Eric Schmidt.
And there’s no doubting the resilience of online advertising. Whilst all other media channels (Newspapers, TV, radio, outdoor) are experiencing severe declines, online advertising continues to buck the trend. There are a few different explanations for why this is, but most of it comes down to accountability. Thanks to tracking technology such as Google Analytics, it’s possible to see how many visitors your website gets from your market spend, and how much money you make from it.
As an indicator of how well the UK is doing compared to the rest of the world, revenues actually grew from quarter to quarter – up from $685m to $733.
Following the announcement, Google’s stock dropped a modest 1.3% on the Nasdaq.
End of the line for Google, or is this just the beginning? Leave us a comment below: