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Shopping the stores, but buying online

Traditional stores are getting sick and tired of providing the showrooms for online retailers and not getting the sale.

Some customers consult sales staff in stores, then make purchases on the net

Traditional brick and mortar stores are both sick and tired of providing the showrooms for online retailers and not getting the sale 2:55

Traditional stores are getting sick and tired of providing the showrooms for online retailers and not getting the sale.

It's called "showrooming" and it's costing retailers dearly.

In a competitive retail landscape, some customers come into a store and gain information and assistance from the sales staff, but go online when it's time to actually make a purchase. Bricks and mortar stores pay for staffing, real estate and displays, but don't see all of the benefits.

It's already been a factor in the demise of U.S. retailer Circuit City. Some stores are starting to fight back, with promises to match any other prices online. But retailers like Best Buy, Sears and others know they're facing an uphill battle.

The CBC's Havard Gould looked into the issue and filed this report. Click the player above to watch it, or click here to watch it in a new window.