The $US30.8 billion in generated sales is a significant increase from 2017, when customers spent $US25.3 billion.
The Chinese event was originally a novelty student holiday to celebrate being single, countering Valentine's Day, but has since grown into a month-long online shopping festival that peaks with a 24-hour sales frenzy on November 11.
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (阿里巴巴) yesterday smashed last year's record for its Singles' Day sales event, surpassing 168 billion yuan (US$24.15 billion) in sales in under 16 hours.
This year, Alibaba said there were around 180,000 brands participating in Singles' Day, and as of 10 a.m. on Sunday sales were close to $20 billion.
Here is a history of Singles' Day through the years.
Singles' Day is the world's biggest online sales event and a year ago netted Alibaba 168 billion yuan ($24.15 billion) in total sales.
Alibaba was crucial in making Singles' Day, previously an obscure holiday observed by just a handful of companies, a massive cultural phenomenon over the last decade.
It's been three years since Ma said he wants to make Singles' Day a global phenomenon. The tariff fight with the United States is casting a pall not simply over trade, but over China's future writ large.
During the first hour of the giant shopping event, known as Singles' Day or 11.11, referring to the date November 11, the top three brands sold were Xiaomi, Apple and Dyson, while the top categories were audio equipment, mobile phones and diapers. They are also integrating their products with smart-home offerings. While most businesses benefit from the holiday in China now, the biggest beneficiary of Singles' Day is Alibaba. "We have to continue to change to reach 300 billion or 500 billion", said Chief Executive Daniel Zhang, who is credited with being the architect of the original Singles' Day sale.
Singles Day was chosen by Zhang to host the event because he thought it'd reduce feelings of being alone if lonely hearts can enjoy buying themselves great stuff online.
In the hours leading up to the shopping event, Alibaba's video streaming platform Youku hosted a gala countdown to mark the festival.
Analysts say that despite continued strong growth, sales are likely to be hit by economic headwinds and new competition from competing sales events.
The gala featured worldwide celebrity appearances and performances from Miranda Kerr, Mariah Carey and Cirque du Soleil, which viewers were able to watch via two major TV stations as well as Youku's site.