said today that independent businesses selling on its platform crossed $4.8 billion in worldwide sales from Black Friday to Cyber Monday.

This marked an increase of more than 60% from a year earlier. 

In its first indication of performance for the year's peak online shopping days, Amazon said more than 71,000 small and medium-sized businesses worldwide had surpassed $100,000 in sales.  

The Seattle-based company did not, however, give a breakdown of US sales or its own numbers for the weekend, nor for either of the two big shopping days.

It said only that the holiday season overall had been its biggest ever. 

Latest industry estimates overnight showed Cyber Monday on course to be the biggest online shopping day ever for the US, garnering up to $11.4 billion as the Covid-19 pandemic prompted consumers to stay at home and turn to the internet for their shopping needs. 

The robust performance comes despite nearly two months of offers since Amazon held its Prime Day sales event in October, with retailers seeking to recoup business lost during this year's coronavirus-driven closures of malls and stores.

Meanwhile, Canada-based Shopify said today that its total Thanksgiving weekend sales soared 76% to $5.1 billion, beating the previous record of more than $2.9 billion by Saturday evening. 

"The record sales demonstrate the power of the independent and direct-to-consumer businesses," Shopify President Harley Finkelstein said. 

Estimates from Adobe Analytics showed this year's conclusion to Thanksgiving weekend sales would come in between $10.8 billion and $11.4 billion. 

While that was down from an earlier estimate of as much as $12.7 billion, it still easily surpasses this year's Black Friday figure of $9 billion, the strongest online sales result for the day ever, as well as last year's Cyber Monday total of $9.4 billion.