Facebook asserts its success on mobile with another strong quarter

About 53 per cent of the company's ad sales came from mobile devices

Facebook's financial results from Q4 '12 to Q4 '13
Facebook's financial results from Q4 '12 to Q4 '13

More than half of Facebook's ad sales came from mobile devices in the fourth quarter, showing continued strength in the site's ability to monetize its service on smaller screens.

Total revenue for the quarter ended December 31 was $US2.59 billion, a 63 per cent increase from the same period the previous year, the company reported. Facebook's sales beat analysts' expectations of $US2.33 billion, as polled by Thomson Reuters.

Net income for the social media company was $US523 million, a more than 700 per cent increase from the fourth quarter in 2012. Earnings per share was $US0.20. Excluding share-based compensation expenses and related payroll tax expenses and adjustments, earnings per share was $US0.31, topping analyst expectations of $US0.27.

Facebook generated sales of $US2.34 billion from advertising, a 76 percent increase from the previous year. Of its total ad sales, 53 per cent came from ads placed on mobile devices, the company reported. During the same period in 2012, only 23 per cent of the company's advertising revenue was derived from mobile.

"It was a great end to the year for Facebook," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a statement.

Facebook makes the majority of its money from advertising and the company has been pressured to raise its ad revenues specifically on mobile devices as more people migrate away from desktop PCs in favor of devices like smartphones and tablets.

Over the past year, Facebook has made considerable progress in chasing mobile ad dollars. In the previous quarter Facebook said roughly 49 percent of its ad sales came from mobile; Wednesday's results mark the first time the company has crossed the 50 percent mark.

The company has several different products for monetizing on mobile, including mobile app install ads, which direct users out of Facebook and into Apple or Google's app stores.

One potential issue hanging over Facebook's business is the extent to which young people -- teens specifically -- might be growing tired of it. During the company's previous earnings call in October, executives reported that Facebook was seeing a decline in the number of daily users among younger teenagers. The concern is that while younger people may not be leaving Facebook outright in droves, they could prefer rival services like Snapchat or Twitter for certain activities. Such a scenario could weaken Facebook's ability to attract advertisers.

Facebook did not address that issue in its announcement, though it is likely to face questions on the matter later in the day when Zuckerberg and other executives take questions from investors and financial analysts. Facebook could also be asked to clarify which types of ad products specifically on mobile helped to generate the bulk of its revenue there and whether the gains came from more ads, or improved ads.

The company did grow its monthly active users overall by 16 per cent to 1.23 billion. The company also grew its daily active users by 22 per cent, but it did not break them down by age.

For the full year, Facebook's revenue was $US7.87 billion, a 55 per cent increase from its sales in 2012.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Is your content marketing missing the mark?

Does it ever seem like the content you create falls flat on its face or that the leads you’re generating aren’t worth following up?

Dan Ratner

managing director, uberbrand

​ Creating a purpose-driven brand

So you want to be a brand with purpose. But what does it actually mean to build a brand with real meaning?

Paul Chappell

Partner and managing director, Brand + Story

Customer experience crisis: Proactively mitigating the risk of broken promises

Last Friday, three weeks after United Airline’s spectacular customer experience disaster, customers received a letter from the company’s CEO, Oscar Munoz.

Very rarely have I come across views so true. There are so many gems in this article, reflective of reality, onec can read it again and a...

Shyam Mishra

ANZ digital chief: Tackle the ‘frozen middle’ of your organisation or face irrelevancy

Read more

STOP STEALING BUISNESS CLASS TOILETS from A380, new 787's and A330's!!!!Thats what you call customer experience ONE toilet for all Busine...

Joe

Qantas CMO: What it's taking to evolve our customer experience

Read more

Dare i suggest that a "CEO" role in a peak industry body like Think Brink is not really much of a leap from CMO because it is also a mark...

Sventana

CMO to CEO: Think Brick chief reveals what it takes to make the jump

Read more

Grate post, thanks for the post.No matter what your business is, if you do no not rank among the top most search results of Google, Yahoo...

Rahul

Image intelligence:10 must-see infographics for marketers

Read more

Thank you Shane Blandford for carrying my Smarketing vision into KM !

Peter Strohkorb

​CMO Interview: Why aligning sales and marketing drives innovation at Konica Minolta

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in