Retailers are today bracing themselves for what they expect to be the busiest online shopping day of the year.

Known as Cyber Monday or Mega Monday, shoppers are expected to go online in droves today to shop for gifts for Christmas, following their last pay day before Christmas and it being the first Monday of December.

This year is expected to break all records with shoppers spending £222,222 per minute and £320m spent today alone. Orders are expected to peak this evening between 8pm and 9pm when consumers return home from work.

Retailers are planning to offer deals and discounts today to take advantage in the online shopping peak. As such, Amazon is launching its new luxury fashion store today.

Amazon managing director Chris North said: “Monday 3 December could be the busiest day in the history of

“As people increasingly shop on mobile devices and benefit from fast broadband at home, we’re seeing a move towards customers buying their Christmas gifts later in the evening when they are at home relaxing.”

M&S has recruited an additional 800 employees at its distribution centres and doubled the number of employees working in its ecommerce call centre. Asda Direct expects to sell 50% more products today than an average Monday.

Shoppers are also expected to do more shopping through mobile devices this year than ever before.

Research firm Experian calculated there will be 115 million visits to online retail sites today, up 36% on last year. Shoppers will also spend 375 million hours shopping online, up 9% on last year.

Due to the leap year this year, Cyber Monday falls a little earlier than usual and Experian believes the second and third Mondays in December will perform “significantly” ahead of last year.