We thought it would be interesting to write a monthly post telling you about the various clients we serve, why they mystery shop, and what some of them do with the results.
You may wonder why a shoe manufacturer or a furniture designer would contract with a mystery shopping company. After all, their sales are made at the corporate level to the retail stores or web companies that sell their merchandise. You can’t pretend to be a manufacturer representative…or can you?
Producers of goods spend millions of dollars on providing retailers the displays, merchandising items and promotional supplies for them to use to sell their products. Shelf and window displays, branding and signage space are all valuable “real estate” to the multiple suppliers of goods to any retail store. Manufacturers want to be sure their merchandise is displayed and presented so as to attract sales.
A manufacturer of any type of retail good may hire a mystery shopping firm to:
- have secret shoppers audit display cases and shelves;
- make sure special sales items are being presented; and
- see if the sales people in the store favor one provider of goods over another.
Your shop would seem like a typical retail shop, but it would be focused on one particular product or brand. You would likely be provided a scenario to extract specific information from a sales person or to observe a specific display case.
Manufacturers are able to take this information and determine which of their suppliers best support them, or how they need to make changes in their supply process in order to compete with other producers in their industry.
Have you done any shops where you knew you were working for a supplier and not the store? Was there something unique about this type of shop? Share your story below.