Stacked bar chart of Q1 2016 results for Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Alphabet and Facebook

Comparing the Profits of Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Google and Facebook

The largest tech firms announced their Q1 earnings in the last week of April.  The market reacted by lowering the share prices of Apple, Google (Alphabet), and Microsoft, while raising the prices of Amazon and Facebook.  If you step back and look and their income statements you get a different perspective.  Apple is by far the largest and most profitable of the five and has strong margins. Amazon is the least profitable and Alphabet and Microsoft are very similar to each other in both revenue and profits.  Facebook is much smaller than the others, but has the best margins.  The stacked bar chart below summarizes revenue, expenses, profit and margins in one graph:

Tech Giant Income Comparison

If you add net lines, data rows and legends to a stacked bar chart, you can use it to compare income and profits across companies, regions, divisions or product lines.  You can fit as many as 10-12 bars on a chart.  For our chart, I entered the data for revenue and three cost categories.  I used formulas to compute net income, which I showed as a net line, and to compute gross and operating margin, which I showed in data rows.  I hid my segment labels, created a legend and showed it on the top of the chart.  I also used the custom sort feature to order the columns from highest to lowest revenue.

Here are some related Chart of the Week posts:

Check out our presentations for more detailed examples including Amazon's Quarter in Just 4 Charts and Analyzing Alphabet (Google).


To learn more about how to create a stacked bar chart like this, watch this video:

Here is the chart in SlideShare to download and edit using Mekko Graphics: