Shopping has entered a new era, evolving to accommodate a soaring fanatic mobile user base and rapidly improving capabilities of smartphones and tablets. The 2013 holidays were no different. IBM reported that Thanksgiving weekend set records for mobile sales and traffic, accounting for nearly 40% of online traffic, as well as nearly one-third of all online traffic on Cyber Monday.

As a marketer, the critical question to consider is this: Did you get a piece of this holiday pie, or were you left out in the cold with just a piece of coal to show for your troubles?

Now that the holiday season is behind us, here are lessons about what marketing teams can do to make the holidays in 2014 even merrier.

Digital Window-Shopping

Photos on mobile are the new "holiday window shopping." Consumers scurry along sidewalks that are bustling with shoppers to scan interesting products in windows. Wanelo, for instance, is an extremely popular mobile app because it features photos that users flip through as if they're window shopping. Marketers can expect to see the "view and swipe" shopping experience become ubiquitous, especially as marketers use big data to put the right products in front of customers to minimize the need to search and filter.

Tinder got this approach right as a dating app, and Tumblr has skyrocketed because it's driven by visual images. People don't want to read a list of names with one-sentence greetings next to small thumbnail photos. They want to swipe through full-size pictures and tap a single button to say whether they're interested or not.

That experience of visual, quick-swipe shopping will likely be replicated throughout 2014, especially leading up to the holiday season.

Integrated Campaigns

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image of Joseph Pigato

Joseph Pigato is the managing director of Sparked, a mobile-first customer engagement platform, where he heads marketing strategy and product development.

Twitter: @josephpigato

LinkedIn: Joseph Pigato