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Shopify Stock Soars to New High -- 5 Metrics Driving It Higher

By Daniel Sparks - Sep 12, 2017 at 2:01PM

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Another day, another new high. It seems like there's nothing that can stop Shopify stock.

It was just over six months ago when I wrote about Shopify's (SHOP 0.84%) mind-boggling 200% rise in just 12 months. Now the e-commerce platform company's stock has climbed 89% higher. It's been on an absolute tear, up a wild 363% since the beginning of 2016.

With Shopify stock hitting new highs again this week, it's a good time to look at some of the metrics driving so much optimism. Five metrics, in particular, stand out as key factors behind the company's success recently. 

Shopify e-commerce platform on a smartphone, laptop, and tablet

Shopify e-commerce platform. Image source: Shopify.

75%: Shopify's revenue growth has persisted at extraordinarily high rates. Second-quarter revenue was up 75% year over year. This revenue was driven by a 64% year-over-year increase in subscription solutions revenue (a marked acceleration from the segment's year-over-year growth in the prior quarter) and an 86% rise in merchant solutions revenue.

Consider how this revenue growth compares to industry peers Square (SQ 2.28%) and PayPal (PYPL 2.01%). Square's second-quarter revenue increased 26% year over year. PayPal's was up 18% over the same time span. 

83%: Demonstrating Shopify's ability to scale its business, gross profit climbed faster than revenue on a year-over-year basis in Q2. Shopify's second-quarter gross profit was up 83% year over year.

1.9%: Another sign of Shopify's ability to scale its business as revenue grows: The company's second-quarter adjusted operating loss narrowed to 1.9% of revenue in its second quarter, an improvement from 3.7% of revenue in the year-ago quarter.

Of course, this non-GAAP figure adjusts for share-based compensation -- a significant expense in tech-heavy sectors like Shopify's, so investors should view this adjusted metric cautiously. Nevertheless, it is encouraging that Shopify's GAAP operating loss as a percentage of revenue hasn't worsened even as the company invests heavily in growth opportunities; in Q2, it was 10% -- the same as it was in the year-ago quarter.

$5.8 billion: Shopify's gross merchandise volume (GMV) during its second quarter hit an impressive $5.8 billion, up 74% from its $3.4 billion worth of GMV in the same quarter last year.

Shopify's share of merchandise volume is smaller than those of its peers: Square's second-quarter payment volume was $16.4 billion and PayPal's was $106 billion. But, once again, Shopify is growing much faster. Its second-quarter GMV climbed 74% year over year, while Square's and PayPal's payment volumes increased 32% and 23%, respectively.

500,000: Along with its second-quarter earnings release on Aug. 1, Shopify announced that over 500,000 businesses now use Shopify. This puts Shopify's average annual compound growth in merchants since 2012 at a whopping 74%.

Importantly, this large base of merchants is increasingly diversified across the globe. Not only are these half a million merchants spread across 175 countries, but Shopify's Asia, South America, and Africa geographic segments are growing very rapidly. Second-quarter merchant counts in these regions were up 82%, 168%, and 70%, respectively. North America merchants were up 56% year over year.

These metrics demonstrate that Shopify stock's incredible recent performance is backed by significant substance. But investors interested in the stock shouldn't automatically bet on Shopify just because the company seems to be firing on all cylinders. It's just as important for investors to consider the implications of the stock's meteoric rise during this period.

Shopify seems to be doing everything right. But its soaring stock price already reflects the expectation for outstanding execution for years to come.

Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends PayPal Holdings and Shopify. The Motley Fool owns shares of Square. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

Shopify Inc. Stock Quote
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PayPal Holdings, Inc. Stock Quote
PayPal Holdings, Inc.
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