A "record" amount of online shopping was done in December 2013, says the the British Retail Consortium (BRC.)
There was a 19.2% growth in internet purchases from December 2012, said the BRC - and accountants KPMG - who conducted the research.
That's the fastest increase for three years, with one in five non-food products bought online,
Helen Dickinson, BRC director general said that retailers have invested in their websites and delivery times.
Online trading in general represented 18.6% of total non-food sales for the final month of 2013, an increase from 16.5% the previous year on the year before.
Ms Dickinson added that a surge in the popularity and use of smartphones and tablets has also contributed to the boost in online retailing.
She said that the figures represented a "respectable overall result" and was in line with the group's prediction that Christmas trading in 2013 "would reflect that while confidence levels were higher than the previous year, this wasn't always matched by more money in pockets".
For supermarkets, however, there was a less positive picture, with a 0.6% decline in food sales.
In the latest set of festive trading figures from some of the UK's biggest supermarkets on Thursday, sales suffered as competition increased.
Like-for-like sales for the chain Morrisons fell 5.6% in the six weeks to 5 January. Tesco's like-for-like sales also were down by 2.4% during the Christmas period.
Morrisons said that its lack of online presence dented its sales, while it also suffered from competition from the discount supermarket chains Lidl and Aldi.
The online retail boom was very much in evidence in late 2013, with many high street chains expanding their internet offerings, and some shops reporting record figures for the amount customers purchased online and on their smartphones around Christmas.
So-called Cyber Monday has also become popular in the UK as well as the US and elsewhere, with big discounting online on the first Monday of December.
Some estimated that £300,000 was spent online every minute on this year's Cyber Monday, as consumers got down to the business of Christmas shopping.