Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) Released its earnings numbers for the three months through June this afternoon, Wednesday July 23, after the market closed on Wall Street. The company showed earnings of $0.42 for the three month period on revenue totaling $2.91 billion. On today’s market shares in the social networking company trended strongly upward and finished the day trading at $71.29.

Facebook Earnings

Consensus revenue expectations, taken from a Businessweek survey of 40 analysts following Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) stand at $2.8 billion, while the same group of analysts are looking for the company to reveal earnings per share of 32 cents for the three month period. In the same three months of last year. Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) earned 19 cents per share on revenue totaling $1.8 billion.

Advertising is king at Facebook

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has transitioned into a real advertising platform in the last twelve months, and this afternoon’s earnings report shows off the company’s spoils from that undertaking. As the digital advertising market continues to grow, Facebook seems likely to take second place behind Google for the time being. It may, however, one day seek to challenge that company’s dominance of the ad scene.

Facebook is no longer building any of its businesses in search of premium services or user fees, it’s building them off of advertising. In the next twelve months it will be expected to make real inroads into monetizing some of its disparate properties in order to become a lively force in the ad world. The company’s start, which can be seen clearly in today’s earnings, is in video ads, but there’s surely more to come.

The two most important properties for Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) to monetize successfully are the ones that cost the company the most. The $1 billion investment in Instagram pales in comparison to the firm’s more recent big buy, but it’s being monetized more successfully thus far. The $20 billion spent on WhatsApp will have to come back to the company at some point, and investors will be eager to hear some of those plans in a conference call due at 5 PM EDT Wednesday afternoon.

Facebook shares fly as ads jump

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) shares have had an incredible run since the second quarter of 2013. In its earnings report one year ago the company showed off numbers that suggested its foray into mobile was becoming a primary concern. With today’s figures showing more than 60% of revenue came from the mobile arena, it seems that investor excitement was justified last year.

Given the company’s current valuation, however, it’s difficult to justify putting more money behind the Menlo Park company. In the last twelve months shares in Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) have increased in value by more than 170%. The company’s valuation now stands at more than 89 times last year’s earnings, but with today’s earnings report showing so much growth it’s difficult to see that valuation as a fair representation.

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) still looks strong after tonight’s earnings report, despite what number the market chooses to react to in the short term. That said, valuation remains high and volatility is sure to hound the company for some time yet.