Online sales are set to deliver healthy rises over Christmas and Boxing Day, although the latter continues to be outstripped by Black Friday.

Online sales on Christmas Day are predicted to rise 6.3% year on year to £844m, according to forecasts from industry body IMRG.

Boxing Day sales are expected to rise 7.9% to £1.03bn, marking the first time the festive trading day has surpassed the £1bn sales mark online.

However, this forecast still sees Boxing Day lagging behind Black Friday in terms of online spending clout. The latter recorded an online spend of £1.39bn according to IMRG, up 11.7% year on year.

IMRG managing director Justin Opie said: “Boxing Day Sales remain a fixture of retail and an important day in the calendar, but Black Friday has altered sales patterns over the full peak period and is now the primary discounting event of the season.

“And perhaps, as with Black Friday, we’re seeing Boxing Day spend become more online-focused.

“Although going out to the shops on that day has long been a British tradition, footfall was reportedly down 7.3% on Boxing Day last year.

“It’s likely that spend on Christmas Day is pulling some of that order volume forward as well, as shoppers have the ability to browse and buy from the sofa on mobile devices during quiet moments at home and visiting family, redeeming the huge numbers of gift cards and coupons that they receive in place of presents each year.”

According to PwC, retailers are set to coax festive sales both in-store and online through a higher level of discounting during the period than took place during the Black Friday Sale weekend.