Understanding why a particular industry chooses to mystery shop, and how they use the results, is information rarely shared with mystery shoppers…until now. Join us each month for our Industry Insider post.
Grocery & Supermarkets
In most towns and cities across America, we all have several choices of where to shop for our groceries. In recent years, the market has become even more competitive with organic and whole food types, huge box and speciality stores, all competing with your local grocer and the supermarket chains.
Grocers, in turn, have had to work harder to create individualized identities to differentiate themselves from the supermarket down the street. The food sales market is extremely competitive and the profit margins are tight.
Mystery shopping a grocery store or supermarket is an all-encompassing experience, as managers of these stores want to be sure their customers have a consistent, welcoming experience when roaming the aisles of their stores.
Our supermarket clients use mystery shopping reports to understand the total customer experience:
- from entering the parking lot and grabbing a cart;
- to interaction with the employees stocking the shelves, as well as those who are cooking in a specialty department;
- all the way through the cashier and bagging experience.
Let’s face it: If any one of those points of contact do not meet a customer’s expectation, next week that customer can easily go to the store down the street.
We find our mystery shoppers try to incorporate an entire week (or two) of grocery shopping when they do supermarket mystery shops.
While we appreciate you using your time management skills to accomplish the most in the least amount of time, we would encourage you to choose to do a “small” grocery purchase when you do your shops.
There are usually 5 to 7 areas you need to explore when in a supermarket. Check your reporting form and instructions before you leave, and adjust your shopping list to pick up an item or two in each of those areas.
This will allow you to stay more focused on the interaction with employees, store shelves, product displays and cleanliness, instead of looking for the sale item for which you have a coupon.
Your focused concentration, thorough reporting and honest feedback will provide that local grocer with the information necessary to make sure all of your shopping experiences at their store are great!
Tell us about your experiences mystery shopping supermarkets. Leave your comment below!