ValueClick (Nasdaq: VCLK) may not get the headlines Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) and Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) do, but as the face that companies and advertisers use to get their products onto the Web, it's just as important to its customers. Building online ad campaigns and adding technology infrastructure for advertisers has given ValueClick a valuable position within the advertising industry sometimes overshadowed by its more visible competitors.

We're far past the boom days of the Internet when revenues were growing by multiples instead of single- or double-digit percentages. As competition becomes more fierce and growth is harder to come by, it's important to see consistent sales and improving margins in a maturing business. Three of ValueClick's four business segments had improved margins in the most recent quarter, highlighted by Affiliate Marketing, which improved operating margins to 53.1% from 47.1 % last year. The only group that didn't improve was Owned & Operated Websites, which lost a major customer impacting second-quarter revenue by an estimated $11 million.

Internet trends may also be working in ValueClick's favor. One analyst who just upgraded the stock thinks Google's Instant Search will be a growth driver for ValueClick, saying, "We believe affiliate marketers may experience a surge in traffic and sales."

To top it off, ValueClick has a solid business, improving margins, and a 15.4 price-to-earnings ratio, which is cheap relative to Web developer Digital River's (Nasdaq: DRIV) 43.3 ratio. But what I like most is what the company does with its cash, currently standing at $172 million with zero debt. While generating more than $100 million in free cash flow each of the past three years, ValueClick bought back $211.4 million worth of its own stock and has another $45 million under its current authorization. That is a big chunk of stock for a company with a $1.1 billion market cap, so I think there is a lot of value left in this click.

Interested in reading more about tech? Add one of these companies to My Watchlist, and My Watchlist will find all of our Foolish analysis on this stock.

Fool contributor Travis Hoium does not have a position in any stock mentioned here. Google is a Motley Fool Inside Value pick. Google is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers choice. The Fool owns shares of Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. True to its name, The Motley Fool is made up of a motley assortment of writers and analysts, each with a unique perspective; sometimes we agree, sometimes we disagree, but we all believe in the power of learning from each other through our Foolish community. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.