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Online sales figures in November represented 19.9% of total non-food sales in the British Retail Consortium's survey - which is a record proportion for digital sales.
The online growth was the best this year and, excluding December months, the best in three years.
The BRC said November's sales got off to a slow start but picked up in a big way in the final week.
Online sales increased by 16% last month as retailers get ready for a festive season in which one in five non-food products will be sold over the internet.
Faster delivery times and the popularity of click and collect services mean shoppers will be more prepared to leave ordering online closer to Christmas, the British Retail Consortium said.
The whole retail sector reported sales growth of 2.3% in November compared with a year earlier.
Fashion categories performed best as a period of colder weather at the end of the month finally triggered spending on winter clothes and footwear.
Homeware also produced a strong showing, especially on the dining and decorative side, as thoughts turned to giving homes a festive refresh.