Marchex (NASDAQ: MCHX) and Autobytel (NASDAQ:ABTL) are both small-cap computer and technology companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their risk, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, earnings, valuation, dividends and profitability.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Marchex and Autobytel, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Marchex 0 1 0 0 2.00
Autobytel 0 1 1 0 2.50

Marchex presently has a consensus target price of $3.00, indicating a potential downside of 2.91%. Autobytel has a consensus target price of $20.00, indicating a potential upside of 180.50%. Given Autobytel’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Autobytel is more favorable than Marchex.

Risk and Volatility

Marchex has a beta of 1.11, meaning that its stock price is 11% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Autobytel has a beta of 0.97, meaning that its stock price is 3% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

49.7% of Marchex shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 58.6% of Autobytel shares are held by institutional investors. 27.4% of Marchex shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 12.8% of Autobytel shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Marchex and Autobytel’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Marchex -15.53% -10.65% -9.44%
Autobytel 3.15% 10.96% 8.20%

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Marchex and Autobytel’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Marchex $105.54 million 1.25 -$12.35 million ($0.39) -7.92
Autobytel $156.22 million 0.50 $14.97 million $0.37 19.27

Autobytel has higher revenue and earnings than Marchex. Marchex is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Autobytel, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Autobytel beats Marchex on 10 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

Marchex Company Profile

Marchex, Inc. is a mobile advertising analytics company. The Company offers products and services for enterprises that depend on consumer phone calls to drive sales. Its media analytics products can provide actionable intelligence on media channels advertisers use to acquire customers over the phone. Its Marchex Omnichannel Analytics Cloud helps marketers connect customer conversions driven from paid media channels, including search, display and video, social and sites, to phone calls made to a business. Its product offerings include Marchex Call Analytics, Marchex Search Analytics, Marchex Display and Video Analytics, Marchex Social Analytics, Marchex Call Marketplace and Local Leads. Its Local Leads platform is a white-labeled, full service advertising solution for small business resellers, such as Yellow Pages providers and vertical marketing service providers, to sell call advertising, search marketing and other lead generation products.

Autobytel Company Profile

Autobytel Inc. is an automotive marketing services company that assists automotive retail dealers and automotive manufacturers market and sell new and used vehicles to consumers through the programs for online lead referrals, dealer marketing products and services, and online advertising programs and mobile products. The Company operates through providing automotive marketing services segment. Its consumer-facing automotive Websites, including Website Autobytel.com, provide consumers with information and tools to aid them with the automotive purchase decisions and ability to submit inquiries requesting dealers to contact the consumers regarding purchasing or leasing vehicles. Its AutoWeb pay-per-click advertising marketplace program uses technology to refer consumer traffic to dealers and manufacturer Websites. For consumers who may not be able to secure loans through conventional lending sources, the Websites provide these consumers the ability to submit inquiries requesting dealers.

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