When Google first went public back in 2004, people thought that the opening price of $85 a share was a joke. They said that the search engine had largely overvalued their stock and that there was no way that anyone would be willing to invest that kind of change — just 100 shares in the company would cost you $8,500 before any sort of brokerage fees — in Google at that price. My, how things have changed.

A single Google stock share is now trading at over $600, representing an over seven-fold increase over its opening value. Imagine if you invested in those 100 shares three years ago. The $8,500 that you invested would now become $60,000. That’s a net profit, if you can believe it, of $51,500. That’s more than enough to buy a pretty nice sports car. It could also represent a decent down payment on your first home. Oh, I guess you have to deal with taxes and fees first, huh? Either way, I’d be pretty happy with an extra 59 grand in my pocket.

I’ve said before that Google dominates my life. As the company continues to expand and buy everything in sight, it seems that there will be no end to its burgeoning growth. They’ve already purchased such giant dot coms as YouTube and Blogger, and that’s in addition to Google services that we’re already using like Gmail, Google Reader, and Adsense. People love Google, for better or for worse, so I see no reason why the value of their stock will not continue to rise. That’s despite the fact that it’s already over $600.

Somewhere in the local newspaper today, the business section predicted that a share in Google will cost more than $700 within the next year or so. This is nowhere near the level of growth we’ve seen so far, but it’s still seems like a very safe bet. Should you still invest in Google at this point? Well, if you want something relatively safe, GOOG might be a good place to go. If you want a quick buck, I’m guessing that some GOOG shares won’t perform quite as well as riskier investments. Then again, I’m no stock exchange expert.

Have you invested in Google? Did you cash out too early? Are you going to buy shares now? I’d love to hear stories of any traders out there.

On a related note, here is an introductory video to Adsense Video units. The new video ad blocks haven’t shown up in my Adsense account yet, but I’m assuming that the new unit will roll out soon.