Google reports earnings for the last quarter of 2010 this afternoon, and analysts are expecting a strong quarter driven by a big year for e-commerce.Lots of online shopping means more searches for products, more clickthroughs on advertisements, and higher rates for those advertisements. This is also the first full quarter in which Google Instant was in effect, which could also help click and ad rates. Analysts have been revising their earnings estimates upwards in the last 90 days.
Last quarter, Google went out of its way to talk about its other businesses beyond paid search, including display advertising and Android. Google is under some pressure to show that it’s more than a one-trick pony — search advertising can’t keep growing at current rates forever — so expect it to highlight any strong numbers in these areas, as well as in its enterprise business.
CEO Eric Schmidt also made an unusual appearance last quarter, answering analysts’ questions about topics like social networking and Android.
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Key estimates (From Yahoo Finance and Mark Maheny at Citi):
- Revenue: $6.05 billion consensus, $6.24 billion high estimate.
- Non-GAAP operating income: $3.31 billion consensus.
- Non-GAAP EPS: $8.07 consensus, $8.42 high estimate.