What is Mystery Shopping?
Mystery Shopping, a.k.a. Secret Shopping, is used by organizations and businesses to evaluate employee performance, confirm compliance in the workplace, and collect information that can help improve the quality of products & services and identify areas
for improvement to gain an edge over competitors.
This article will briefly discuss how Mystery Shopping works, which industries use Mystery Shoppers, and the pros and cons of utilizing a Secret Shopper. We also offer some tips and resources on how to set-up Mystery Shopping for your organization.
How is Mystery Shopping done?
Mystery Shopping typically involves an organization hiring a secret shopper to enter their own or a competitor’s business as a customer to grade a product and/ or service offering. A good Mystery Shop or Visit will set specific information gathering objectives.
For example if you are assessing the general customer experience of a restaurant, you would ask the Mystery Shopper to simply visit the restaurant and order a meal and grade the overall experience. The Mystery Shopper would typically be asked to assess
the restaurant appearance, waitstaff, food and timeliness.
However, if you are assessing the handling of returns for a retailer you would be more specific and set a specific scenario for the Mystery Shopper to follow. For example: 1) purchase a specific item, 2) leave the store, 3) return to a different attendant;
and 4) make a specific statement to the attendant about the purchase error. The Mystery Shopper would then be asked a specific series of questions grading the overall experience.
Whether it is a general or specific information gathering Mystery Shopper, a checklist is typically used to ensure consistency in measuring experiences.