Can You Do THIS Type of Mystery Shopping?

shopping bagsWhat type of Mystery Shopper are you?

You may think a mystery shopper is a mystery shopper is a mystery shopper.

But in reality, there are many types of mystery shoppers. Not every mystery shopper can do all types of shops.

There are shops based on specific age and gender. A 70-year-old obviously cannot act as the mother of a 4-year-old. A grandmother, perhaps, but many clients do not want that scenario used.

And then there are specific shops where the client is looking to see how their staff treats a certain demographic or gender group. Mystery shopping providers must assign the appropriate person. The shopper may not even know it is demographic sensitive, but will just write up the report based on their experience.

Then there are shops that ‘anyone’ can do, but once you read the details you will determine if the shop is a fit for your personality type – or if it is a shop you would never, ever consider.

Integrity shops – These are shops where you are ‘testing’ an employee to see if they deliver the right change or if the representative can be coerced into giving you more than you are paying for. It takes a certain personality to be able to act this out or be willing to be witness to such acts.

Very Specific Scenario shops – These shops are for the actors and actresses of the mystery shopping world. Would you be willing to go to a funeral home or cemetery to discuss arrangements for a (pretend) close relative or friend who had just passed? Or walk into a store and demand to see the manager about a (phony) damaged order? For some people, this is not stressful at all; but for others it would be nearly impossible to pull this off.

Reveal shops – Reveal shops can be fun if you like to award people recognition – but sometimes you need to deliver ‘bad’ news when conducting a reveal shop. For this type of shop, you act as a normal customer and make observations during your visit. At the end, you approach the manager or sales person and reveal to them that you are a mystery shopper. The mystery shopping company will provide you with ID and some form of notification to the employee. You either present them with a certificate of accomplishment or a ‘report card’ of what wasn’t right. Some shoppers are not comfortable in revealing their identity and presenting others with bad news.

When reading assignment solicitations in emails or on job boards, be sure to read the details of what you must do. If these are not stated in the pre-qualifying communications, and you are assigned, let the scheduler know you are not comfortable acting out that scenario.

Not every shop is for everyone. Be sure you are doing work that will be best for you.

Have you ever done any of these types of shops? Tell us about your experience – we can all learn from one another!


About Market Viewpoint

Market Viewpoint offers comprehensive mystery shopping services, complete customer service audits, employee and customer surveys, customer focused marketing strategies, and customer service training to help you improve your customer service and outshine your competition.
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7 Responses to Can You Do THIS Type of Mystery Shopping?

  1. Debbie Colo says:

    Yes, I have done a little bit of everything mystery shopping. It is like acting and that is something I have also done in my life having been an extra in 3 different movies and also local plays. Date: Wed, 9 Mar 2016 21:04:48 +0000 To:

  2. Raymond says:

    While I have an eye for and remember detail I have problems remembering names and description of age , hair color , height etc , often required for reports.
    I take a small recording device with me and discreetly enter this information while holding my phone so it appears I am talking on the phone!

    • Raymond – technology has done a LOT to help mystery shoppers! Either texting or appearing as though you are on a call (using a discreet voice) goes a long way to helping you recall details! And the more details, the happier are our clients. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Sally Ferguson says:

    I have been Mystery Shopping since 1992 and have had the opportunity to do all of the shops types that you mentioned. Video shopping is the only one that I haven’t been trained to do but
    suspect I could also do that as well and due to my experience from all of the others.

    • Sally! What a testimony to the ability to stay in this business for a long time, through all types of economic conditions and stages of life! Kudos to you! Check around. There are plenty of companies that do video shopping training – or consider going to ShopperFest in Las Vegas in June.

  4. Susan D. Brainard says:

    I’m not sure how I got started receiving emails from Market Viewpoint. But am very happy I do.
    Was wondering if there were any openings in my area and how I check and apply for these ?

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