Advertising Fuels Search Engine Growth

Alphabet has seen its profits during Q4 2016 fail to hit forecasts, despite the company seeing an overall profit rise of 8%. Much of the growth has been fuelled by Google advertising revenues, which grew by 17.4%. PPC ads saw a 36% growth, fuelled by the increase in advertising across mobile and YouTube. It is thought that Alphabet's failure to hit overall forecasts is due to spiralling costs after the launch of its new Pixel smartphone. Meanwhile, Naver reported a record year in 2016, after becoming the first South Korean company to see revenue of over 4 trillion won. Continuous growth in advertising revenues and overseas sales were largely responsible for the achievement. However, Naver's success came despite seeing falling user numbers on its Line messaging app, down 3 million from 220 million in Q4. This compares badly to rivals Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, which both saw user numbers increase yet again.