Data gathered on online shopping activity carried out in the UK on Monday 3rd December – so-called ‘Cyber Monday’ – has broken all previous records.

According to figures released by independent online activity analysts Experian Hitwise, this year’s Cyber Monday – the Monday following Thanksgiving week in the US, when online Christmas shopping in the UK is traditionally expected to be at its peak – saw 112 million visits made to UK online retail sites. This is a rise of 32% on the previous year.

The Experian figures also reveal 15 hours in total were devoted to online retail visits during the day – the longest time period ever recorded – with each visit averaging eight minutes and 12 seconds.

Commenting on the record-breaking online shopping activity, Experian Marketing Services’ digital insight manager, James Murray, spoke of his confidence for the rest of the pre-Christmas online shopping period:

“[Cyber Monday was] the biggest single day of online shopping we’ve ever witnessed. There is still plenty of shopping time between now and Christmas however, and in particular we are expecting a lot of last-minute panic buying online on Christmas Eve as consumers take advantage of click-and-collect services.”

He advised retailers to ensure they were prepared for this anticipated additional online shopping activity – and predicted that Christmas 2012 could well be looked back on as a halcyon moment for online retail.

The Experian data meanwhile revealed that major brands dominated the Cyber Monday activity – with 62% of all visits being made to sites located in the industry’s overall top 100, and 12.18% of all visits going to Amazon.