Cyber Monday Sales Jump, But Not as High This Year

Ongoing sales offset single-day surge

The preliminary stats are in, and this year's Cyber Monday sales were up more than 8 percent from last year. The increase was smaller than expected, though, due to extended online sales that started in November.

Still, online shoppers accounted for the busiest digital shopping day of the year on Dec. 1, according to the Associated Press. The initial numbers provided by IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark pointed to the importance of mobile devices in pushing online promotions. Mobile users accounted for 22 percent of Monday's online sales, with smartphones posting just over 40 percent of online traffic.

All these stats add up to one thing for major brand retailers: online shopping is a growth area compared to Black Friday, which saw a downturn in sales this year. 

Target and Amazon are among the big retailers offering cyber deals throughout the week, indicating that companies are no longer resting on a single day of blowout sales. Walmart also experienced its highest volume of online traffic ever and is extending its deals on tech products. However, there is no hard sales data from the brand, reported Time.

Social media is also becoming a more important marketing tool to compete for holiday customers. According to Forbes, Black Friday traffic on social media doubled from last year to more than 2 million discussions, which were reportedly used to drive online sales. The most-discussed brands on Twitter and Facebook during Black Friday and Cyber Monday were Kohl's, Apple, Samsung, Amazon, Microsoft, Etsy and Motorola, which asked for retweets of big discounts on its Moto X 2014 edition.