You have probably seen advertisements circulating around different media channels (mainly online) where “mystery shopping companies” guarantee work and guarantee that you will earn large amounts of money every month. Please do not fall for these advertisements. For the majority of the times these are scammers trying to get your personal details rather than offering you jobs. Remember the saying “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
So back to the original question – How much work do you get as a mystery shopper?
The answer is: It depends. It depends on many factors.
Let’s go through the main ones:
· Your location: Your location is very important for TWO main reasons. ONE: The mystery shopping company might not service clients in your area so there will be no work for you. TWO: There might be a lot of registered mystery shoppers applying for the same jobs you are. Sometimes there may be only one job in your area and there may be a dozen mystery shoppers applying. That’s one reason why you are not guaranteed work.
· Your ability to travel: Following from the above point, if you are willing to travel a greater distance, you have the opportunity to apply for more jobs and increase your chances of picking up more assignments.
· The stand down period: When was the last time you mystery shopped the same venue? If the venue conducts mystery shopping once a month and you keep going back every month, wouldn’t it become obvious to the staff members that you are the mystery shopper? For this reason, mystery shopping companies will rotate shoppers to help protect your identity. It also allows other shoppers to have a go at completing the job.
· Your shopper profile: Different companies measure their shoppers’ performance differently. However, all companies will be looking through your reports and scoring them. In general, the more reliable you are to the company, the more they will entrust you with completing future assignments. Even though your reports might be excellent, if you continually submit reports late or decline lots of surveys this will show that you cannot be relied upon all the time.
· Whether or not you apply for the job or not: There might be jobs available but you don’t want to do them. That’s fine, however we suggest that you give it a go as you might learn and experience a thing or two. We’ve had a shopper who wasn’t keen on going to gyms because in the past she thought that staff members were treating her as a nuisance because of her physical problems. She completed a gym mystery shop with Mystery Customer and went back later to sign up because the staff members there were supportive in assisting her with her problems.
Tips for getting more mystery shopping assignments
- Sign up with more companies (don’t sign up with too many unless you are REALLY organised)
- Know what the company expects from you. (that’s why signing up with many companies will be confusing)
- Read all instructions and scenarios thoroughly before completing the visit. You need to know what the mystery shopping company expects of you.
- Complete all assignments with quality and meeting the deadlines and only apply for the jobs you can do.If you need to decline it, decline it well ahead of the due by date.