As expected, numbers out on Friday from research firm comScore confirmed mobile shopping, which includes smartphones and tablets, jumped in November and December, spurring on holiday retail sales this year.

Online shoppers are increasingly comfortable with shopping on smartphones as screen sizes get larger and shopping apps get better.

“I believe that we’ve seen a paradigm shift in 2016 where the future of retail will increasingly be defined by consumers’ behavior on mobile,” said comScore chairman emeritus Gian Fulgoni.

Total online spending during November and December rose 13 per cent to $69.08 billion (Dh253.66 billion) from $61.29 billion last year, slightly short of the 14 per cent rise comScore, based in Reston, Virginia, was expecting.

Spending on desktops rose 6 per cent to $56.43 billion, short of comScore’s expectations of an 8 per cent rise to $58.3 billion.

But mobile commerce helped make up some of that shortfall. Shopping on smartphones and tablets jumped 59 per cent to $12.65 billion, well above the 47 per cent rise comScore was expecting.

Mobile commerce accounted for 18 per cent of total online spending, up from 13 per cent last year.

Cyber Monday, November 30, was once again the top spending day of the year with more than $2 billion in desktop buying for the second year in a row.