How to Get Started in Mystery Shopping

How to start mystery shoppingLast week, ABC News aired a piece on mystery shopping. The short, informative piece started a flurry of activity and interest on line about mystery shopping.

So how do you start mystery shopping?

As stated in the video, it is going into the same establishments you already shop, bank and dine in. The difference in what you do when you visit these places as a mystery shopper is you are looking for specific things.

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Mystery Shopping Assignments – Having it Your Way!

Just like the vintage Burger King slogan “Have it your way”– we would all like to have everything our way, wouldn’t we?

That applies to a lot of things in life, but in this case, we are talking mystery shopping assignments.

In the ideal world, shoppers would get to pick which businesses to mystery shop, tell schedulers what they want to be paid, and then choose the best day on their calendar to do the shop.

That would really be having it your way!

But … alas …  (since we are going vintage, we’ll use old words too!) it cannot work this way.

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How Much are You Paid for Mystery Shops?

Mystery Shops If you look at the mystery shopping message boards and social media groups, you’ll find a lot of people griping about the fees that are paid for mystery shops.

And you’ll find a lot of people not saying too much about them at all. They just happily go about their work and make the money.

So why the divide?

Just like everything else we do in life – no one can make everyone happy all the time. But it’s not about mystery shopping companies making mystery shoppers happy. It’s about three businesses partnering with one another so all accomplish their goals.

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Watch This Now! Staying Organized to Achieve Your Goals

OrganizedHow do you stay organized and get it all done?

As a mystery shopper, there are a lot of pieces to keep in place. Looking for jobs, applying for assignments, interacting with schedulers and account managers, conducting your shops, gathering business cards, waiting for follow up, writing up your reports and submitting them. Then, of course, waiting for payment!

In between all of that is your home life, possibly your full-time job and then the hopes and dreams of what you want to do in the future.

It’s a lot easier when you have a system in place for knowing what you need to do, and more importantly, what you want to do!

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How to Vacation When You Have a Home-Based Business

Home-based business vacationDo you get a vacation when you have a home-based business?

If you have a home-based mystery shopping business there are likely people in your life who think you are on vacation all year-round. But we know that is not true!

To be a profitable mystery shopper you need to be constantly looking for shops, managing routes and filling out reports. But yes, it does offer you flexibility in your schedule.

It has become easier and more common in the last 20 years to have a home-based business or work from home full or part time. And there are many advantages to having the spare bedroom or the kitchen table be your ‘office’.

But for both at home workers and office workers, vacation time has become a bit of a conundrum with our 24/7 ‘you can reach me’, tech world. When do you ‘turn off’ and truly vacation?

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The 11 Top Requirements to Be a Mystery Shopper

Requirements for a Mystery ShopperWith well over 170 mystery shopping companies listed as part of MSPA-NA, the industry’s trade organization, mystery shoppers are in demand. And there are many more companies who are not part of MSPA.

We are all part of an industry that makes a difference in corporations and organizations large and small. From huge Fortune 500 companies to the local entrepreneur who owns three delicatessens or preschools. Mystery shopping services are needed and in demand.

Choosing Who You Work For

I’ll bet very few of you are signed up as independent contractors for every mystery shopping company. Most of you likely choose

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How Do You Answer this Question? Writing Your Mystery Shopping Reports

Writing Mystery Shopping ReportsWhen you sit down to input your mystery shopping reports, what happens when you see the instruction, “Write four to five complete sentences in the comment section.”?

Does your brow furrow? Do your fingers freeze on the keyboard?

Sometimes it’s hard to think of an eloquent way to respond to “Was the phone answered in a polite, timely manner?”, right?

The reason mystery shopping companies ask for this is because we want our clients to ‘hear’ and ‘see’ all that you did. We, and our clients, are counting on you to be the zoom lens into knowing how their employees act and react when the boss isn’t watching. Or even if he or she is.

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