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YouTube topped Netflix in terms of quarterly revenue, with the Google-owned video platform delivering $8.6 billion in advertising revenue in Q4, the company said Tuesday. For fiscal 2021, YouTube delivered $28.8 billion in advertising revenue.
In the same quarter a year earlier, YouTube delivered $6.9 billion in advertising revenue, underscoring the continued explosive growth of the platform. For comparison, Netflix delivered $7.7 billion in revenue in Q4 in 2021, compared to $6.6 billion a year earlier.
Overall, Alphabet, Google’s parent company, reported $75.3 billion in revenue for the quarter, and $257.6 billion for the year, with Google search advertising still making up the lions share of revenue.
In a statement, Google CFO Ruth Porat cited a resurgent advertising business for the company’s growth.
“Our fourth quarter revenues of $75 billion, up 32% year over year, reflected broad-based strength in advertiser spend and strong consumer online activity, as well as substantial ongoing revenue growth from Google Cloud,” Porat said in a statement. “Our investments have helped us drive this growth by delivering the services that people, our partners and businesses need, and we continue to invest in long-term opportunities.”
On the company’s earnings call, Google chief business officer Philipp Schindler said that retail, finance, media and entertainment, and travel were among the biggest advertising categories for the company.
With regard to YouTube, the executives cited commerce as a potential growth area for YouTube, with CEO Sundar Pichai calling it “a whole other layer of opportunity.”
“Podcasts, gaming, learning, sports, across all of these areas we will take a vertical specific look and find out how we can support creators better,” he said.
“While pretty early, there is a lot of pilots under way,” he added, noting that they were “super early” into testing how shopping could be baked into YouTube Shorts, its TikTok-esque shorts platform, which Pichai said now has more than 5 trillion views.
The executives also called out YouTube’s connected TV opportunity.
“We think there is a ton of runway ahead,” Schindler said, noting that in the U.S. there is now baked in measurement through Nielsen and Comscore. “The screen is starting to come alive, with the ability to drive conversions, it’s pretty cool.”
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