What Does 2013's Cyber Monday Mean for Your 2014 Marketing Plan?

Cyber Monday sales reached a record $2.29 billion this year, and retailers enjoyed a 15.7 percent increase in sales over last year, reports PFSWeb. Smartphone and tablet purchases accounted for over 18 percent of online sales, proving that shoppers can enjoy the Cyber Monday holiday, whether or not they have a laptop or a PC. The success of Cyber Monday is more than just exciting–an analysis of the day's trends can give business owners a jump start on organizing their marketing objectives for 2014.

Go Mobile!

Cyber Monday sales on mobile devices were up 55 percent over the previous year, and the average shopper on a smartphone spent $120 per order on iOS devices and $106 per order on Android devices. The upswing in mobile shopping is no surprise. According to Pew Internet, close to 60 percent of Americans currently own a smartphone, and more than a third of them use their smartphones as their primary way of browsing the Internet.

Compete for these shoppers by ensuring that your website has been optimized for mobile devices. If someone is searching for your product on their smartphone, you need to give them the ability to buy when their interest level is high. If your site is not optimized for e-commerce mobile transactions, you will likely lose the sale. If you own a brick-and-mortar store, optimize your site for mobile devices so that potential customers can get directions, call you or shoot you an email with the touch of a button.

Benefits of Brand Loyalty

Online shopping isn't just about finding crafty items from Etsy, and it isn't just about browsing niche shops that sell cloth diapers, funky jewelry or rare coins that are hard to find, either. Department stores, the longstanding cornerstone of malls everywhere, are now holding their own on Cyber Monday. According to iStockAnalyst, an online community of financial bloggers, investment advisors, money managers and investment newsletter managers , Cyber Monday sales for department stores rose 70 percent from last year. Department stores such as Macy's held Cyber Monday sales that attracted thousands of eager shoppers. Each of these shoppers spent an average of $161, almost 19 percent more than they spent the year before and well over the total spending average for Cyber Monday shoppers.

This increase in department store patronage equates to loyalty. Instead of jumping on the lowest price from an obscure online shop, consumers are looking for trusted retailers online. This underscores the importance of brand building as part of your 2014 marketing campaign. Make your customers love your brand now, and reap the benefits during the next holiday season.

Get to Know Your Customer

If you are not connecting with your client base over social networking sites, let the Cyber Monday numbers convince you of the importance of social-network marketing. Consumers shared referrals on all of the big social networking sites, but Facebook fared better than Pinterest when it came to closing the deal. According to PFSWeb, deals posted on Facebook had a 38 percent stronger conversion rate than those on Pinterest.

Not Everyone is An Early Bird

Very few people woke up at dawn to hit the Cyber Monday sale. Sales started to ramp up at 11 a.m. EST, and they continued to stay strong until well into the evening. If you are offering an online door buster sale, offer it in the afternoon or the evening. That schedule will give your sale the best exposure.