By Daniel Hunter

John Lewis has said it will have achieve record online sales by the time Black Friday finishes.

Shortly before midday, the retailer said traffic to its website was already up 307% compared with Black Friday in 2013.

John Lewis said traffic peaked between midnight and 1am as shoppers looked to secure their bargains.

It said Apple's iPad Mini was its fastest seller of the morning, but the Nutribullet food processor was selling at a rate of one every 30 seconds.

Like many others, John Lewis said it had difficulties coping with the demand on the website. Around 7% of people wanting to visit the site weren't able to on their first attempt, it said.

" is up and running and working well," a spokesperson said.

Data from Sage Pay predicts that UK shoppers will spend £1.5 billion over the weekend, with Black Friday and Cyber Monday taking centre stage.

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