NEW YORK (CNN/Money) -
Strong online holiday sales helped Amazon.com get what it wanted: a record holiday season and the biggest single sales day in its history.
The news sparked a big rally in shares of Seattle-based Amazon.com, the world's biggest online retailer.
As holiday procrastinators flocked to the Internet for last-minute shopping, the online retailer said it experienced the busiest holiday season in the company's 10-year history, thanks in part to the high demand for electronics this year.
In fact, consumer electronic gear overtook books as Amazon's biggest sales category for the first time, boosted by sales of the popular Apple iPod and mini iPod.
Amazon.com set a single-day record with more than 2.8 million items ordered worldwide, equal to about 32 items a second, the company said in a statement.
Two million items were shipped on the peak day, but a company spokesman would not specify which day that was. He also declined to comment on overall sales figures.
Amazon said more than half a million gift certificates were ordered during the holiday period, which ran from Nov. 25 to Dec. 23.
It also said its "Holiday Shoppers" feature, which tracks the estimated number of visitors to the site during the prior 60 minutes, topped 700,000 one of the holiday hours.
The top-selling books this holiday season included Jon Stewart's "America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction."
On Dec. 14 "The Lord of the Rings, Return of the King Extended Edition" DVD broke the record for a single one-day order of over 13,000 units.
Amazon said the last order placed on Dec. 23 in time for Christmas delivery contained the CD "Is This It" by The Strokes and "Yu-Gi-Oh!-The Movie" DVD. It was delivered to Sammamish, Wash., on Christmas Eve, the company said.
Amazon.com (up $3.32 to $42.25, Research) stock surged more than 9 percent in afternoon trading on Nasdaq.