Netflix, Yahoo, Microsoft, Alphabet (Google) Q1 2016 Earnings Recap: The Data Behind the Numbers

 In Industry News

Earnings season for 2016 has officially kicked off. Last week we had four Internet giants reporting: Netflix, Yahoo, Microsoft, Alphabet (Google). If you’ve missed the calls, the coverage, and the commentary, here’s a recap.

Along with metrics on usage and top properties, Verto reported how each of these companies rank on the Verto Stickiness Index. The Verto Stickiness Index (VSI) compares daily users with monthly users to reflect the active, loyal, and engaged part of the audience.The higher the stickiness, the bigger the share of daily users versus the monthly users is. For example, Google’s stickiness ranking is 86, which means that 86% of Google’s users use at least one of Google properties on every day of the month.

Note: For each of the points, below we reported on the U.S. online adult population (18 or above) which, as of March 2016, represented 247.7 million active monthly users.

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NETFLIX: Growing, But Not Fast and Far Enough?  

Verto Data:

  • 97.3M users have used Netflix at least once in March 2016, which puts Netflix’s net reach at 39.2%. By comparison, Hulu’s net reach is 11.13%.
  • On average, 13.2M users watch Netflix on a daily basis giving it a stickiness ranking of 14%. By comparison, Hulu’s stickiness is 13%.
  • On average, a Netflix user spends 1.8 hours a month on Netflix, and the average session duration is 11 minutes (One movie can be watched over several sessions, or users may be switching between or searching for shows.)
  • Among primary online devices (PCs, smartphones and tablets):
    • The PC remains the most used device to access Netflix with 68.6M monthly users. Smartphones come in second with 24.3M users, while tablets were used by 21.7M users.
    • The average time spent per user per month on tablets is the highest among the three devices, with the average Netflix tablet user spending 3.2 hours a month compared to 2 hours on smartphones and less than an hour on PCs.
  • Netflix is equally popular among women and men: 52% of the user base is female, and 48% are male. These figures are close to the distribution of all online users where women represent 51.6% of the online users.
  • 34% of Netflix users are Millennials, 24% Gen X, 31% Baby Boomers and 11% Silents.

Verto View:

Netflix continues to grow. They are four times bigger in the U.S. than Hulu. One of the areas where we would expect to see stronger growth is in mobile screens – tablets and smartphones. Netflix’s usage is still driven by PC and smart TV audiences, but will consumers use more tablets to watch Netflix during evening prime time in the future? We’re also watching Netflix’s growth outside of the U.S. market. They have a strong home base and market in the U.S., but can they replicate their market position in other countries?

Key Coverage:

YAHOO: In Decline, But Still Has Reach

Verto Data:

  • 229M users accessed one of Yahoo’s online services at least once during March 2016, which puts Yahoo’s net reach at 92.5%
  • On average, 122.6M users access Yahoo’s services on a daily basis giving it a stickiness ranking of 54%, much lower than Google’s 86% and Microsoft’s 68%
  • On average, a Yahoo user spends 16.7 hours a month on Yahoo’s services with an average session duration of 8 minutes
  • Among primary online devices (PCs, smartphones and tablets):
    • PC remains the most used device to access Yahoo with 177.1M monthly users. Smartphones come in second with 121.1M users, while tablets were used by 50.8M users
    • The average time spent per user per month is highest among PC users with the average Yahoo PC user spending 20 hours a month versus 1.6 hours on smartphones and 1.6 hours on tablets
  • 53% of Yahoo’s user base are women and 47% are men
  • 30% of Yahoo users are Millennials, 26% Gen X, 31% Baby Boomers and 13% Silents
  • Yahoo’s Top Services include:
    • Yahoo Mail — Monthly Users: 86M users
    • Yahoo Search — Monthly Users: 80.6M users
    • Yahoo Answers — Monthly Users: 54.9M users
    • Yahoo News — Monthly Users: 36.3M users

Verto View:

Despite its current performance, Yahoo is still positioned at the top end of U.S. digital publishers. Yahoo has been able to up its game in mobile over the past two years – and its search and email properties are still strong. After 20 years in business, their services still reach more than 9 out of 10 adults in the U.S. monthly with Yahoo online services. That means, no longer market leaders, Yahoo could be sold at a good price.

Key Coverage:

MICROSOFT: As PC Usage Drops, Microsoft Pushes Growth in Cloud and Mobile

Verto Data:
  • 227.3M users have accessed one of Microsoft’s online services at least once in March 2016, which puts Microsoft’s net reach at 91.8%
  • On average, 154.4M users access Microsoft’s services on a daily basis giving it astickiness ranking of 68%
  • On average, a Microsoft user spends 32 hours a month on Microsoft’s services, and the average session duration is 6.4 minutes
  • Among primary online devices:
    • PC remains the most used device to access Microsoft properties with 195.6M Monthly users. Smartphones come in second with 85.8M users, while tablets were used by 31.2M users
    • The average time spent per user per month is highest among PC users with the average Microsoft PC user spending 36 hours a month vs 2 hours on smartphones and 1.7 hours on tablets
  • 51% of Microsoft’s user base are women and 49% are men
  • 29% of Microsoft’s users are Millennials, 26% Gen X, 32% Baby Boomers, and 13% Silents
  • Microsoft’s Top Properties (excluding Internet Explorer):
    • Microsoft Live — Monthly users: 177.1M users
    • Bing — Monthly users: 138.9M users
    • Microsoft Office — Monthly users: 136.3M users
    • MSN — Monthly Users: 121.5M users
    • Skype — Monthly users: 83.7M users
    • OneDrive — Monthly Users: 42.4M users
Verto View:

Microsoft has quickly pushed its mobile reach with their new device-agnostic strategy, and even though they still have twice as many users using Microsoft services on PCs vs. smartphones, the mobile segment is growing. Microsoft has four significant digital brands with more than 100 million unique users monthly. Skype is still big, with 84 million unique U.S. users, and OneDrive has started to compete with other cloud-storage services.

Key Coverage:

ALPHABET (GOOGLE): Misses, But Sees Opportunities to Further Monetize Users

Verto Data
  • 243.1M users have accessed one of Google’s online services at least once during March 2016, which puts Google’s net reach at 98.2%
  • On average, 208.6M users access Google’s services on a daily basis giving it a stickiness ranking of 86%
  • On average, a Google user spends 95 hours a month on Google’s services, and the average session duration is 6.4 minutes
  • Among primary online devices:
    • PC remains the most used device to access Google’s properties with 189.8M monthly users. Smartphones come in second with 161.7M users, while tablets were used by 85.5M users
    • The average time spent per user per month is highest among PC users with the average Google PC user spending 98 hours a month vs 20.4 hours on smartphones and 10.6 hours on tablets
  • 52% of Google’s user base are women and 48% are men
  • 31% of Google’s users are Millennials, 26% Gen X, 32% Baby Boomers, and 12% Silents.
  • Google’s Top Properties are (excluding Chrome):
    • Google — Monthly Users: 238.1M users
    • YouTube — Monthly Users: 228.6M users
    • Google Maps — Monthly Users: 165.8M users
    • Gmail — Monthly Users: 145.7M users
    • Google+  Monthly Users: 125.6M users
    • Google Drive — Monthly Users: 108.8M users
    • Google Docs — Monthly Users: 106.7M users

Verto View

Google is still one of the most successful Internet companies, with its ad tech platforms, video streaming with YouTube, and search. They are also very mobile oriented. Compared to Microsoft, U.S. online users spend 10 times more time on their smartphones accessing Google properties than they do on Microsoft’s properties. We’re watching to see if they can continue growing their business-oriented solutions – Google Drive and Google Docs – which also have a correlation with their monetization capabilities.

Key Coverage


We will be continuing to cover the quarterly earnings over the next few weeks. Stay tuned by following us on Twitter, subscribing to our newsletter or contacting us if you are interested in learning more about Verto research.

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