Turkey Day is no longer just a day to gorge, give thanks, and watch football. We’re now celebrating our American heritage with our pocketbooks too, using the holiday as an excuse to shop until the tryptophan kicks in.

Internet traffic-watcher Experian measured our fleeting familial attention on Thanksgiving Day and found that online retail-specific traffic increased 71 percent in 2012 compared to 2011. The top 500 retail sites pooled together more than 181 million U.S. web visits for the day.

Amazon, Walmart, Target, BestBuy, and Sears benefited the most from our celebratory dispositions.

With more than 25 million U.S. online visits, not counting mobile traffic, Amazon was the top visited retail site on Thanksgiving Day. The e-commerce haven noticed a 16 percent uptick in web traffic from the previous day, as people (trapped?) at family gatherings turned to the web for a little retail therapy.

BestBuy, the fourth most popular online retail destination, proved it can be more than America’s electronics showroom. Traffic to the big-box retailer’s website skyrocketed by 104 percent between Wednesday and Thursday to reach 11.4 million U.S. visits on Turkey Day, which was good enough to make BestBuy the winner of the highest day-over-day traffic growth award.

Collectively, Americans are shopping more online this holiday week than in years past, Experian found.

“So far this Holiday week of online traffic to the top retail sites is up 8 percent on average,” said Matt Tatham of the Experian Marketing Services.

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