Alibaba reported Singles' Day sales jumped roughly 40% this year, topping the $25 billion level.

Last year, Singles' Day sales, as measured by sales processed by Alibaba's Alipay platform, reached roughly $18 billion.  As a comparison, Black Friday online sales in the US totaled $2.74 billion last year, amounting to about about one-sixth of the sales from Singles’ Day.

Alibaba said some 225 countries and regions completed transactions during the day, up from about 200 a year ago.  Alibaba has made no secret of the fact that it hopes to entice shoppers in Europe—and even the US—to click and take advantage of sales deals.

In the latest episode of eMarketer's "Behind the Numbers" podcast, analysts Rahul Chadha and Yory Wurmser dig into the online sales phenomenon of Singles' Day.