A Deeper Look at the Myths of Mystery Shopping

If you are considering becoming a mystery shopper but have some doubts about the job, you are not alone. Many current mystery shoppers had to overcome those same doubts and rule out some pretty significant myths before they were ready to move forward with working as a mystery shopper. There are quite a few rumors and myths circulating about mystery shopping. Here are the true facts behind some of the most popular myths out there:

Big Bucks. Many people today are very attuned to the possibility of scams over the internet, and it is completely understandable that you may be turned off by the idea of mystery shopping because of the rumors circulating that this is a way to make big bucks in a fun and easy way. The truth is that mystery shopping can be fun and it sometimes is easy. However, generally the income isn’t quite so lucrative as you may have been led to believe. This is a job that offers flexible work hours and no experience, and the compensation reflects that. Generally, an assignment that will take you about an hour to complete will pay you between $10-$20, but there is some variation in this.

Free Cruises. Who doesn’t want to go on a free cruise? Most mystery shoppers certainly do, but very few have that opportunity. The vast majority of assignments you would run into as a mystery shopper have you making small (but often reimbursed) expenses at retail stores, restaurants, and other such common consumer venues. There are some highly coveted assignments such as those at fine dining restaurants, hotels, resorts, and theme parks, but many mystery shoppers will work in the industry for years and not be offered these rare assignments.

Scams. Many people have heard that mystery shopping is a scam, and they shy away from it immediately. The truth is that mystery shopping itself is not a scam, but actually is a legitimate job option that has been around for decades. This rumor likely circulates so rampantly because of the fact that there are scam artists that prey on mystery shoppers, offering them fake assignments and trying to swindle their money. To work in the industry, you will want to team up with legitimate mystery shopping providers who will offer you real assignments. If you are looking for a way to find these providers, you will want to start with a visit to the Mystery Shopping Providers Association’s website. Keep in mind that while you may be asked to make small purchases as a mystery shopper that you generally are reimbursed for, you will not have to pay for a list of providers or to sign up to work for a company.

It is unfortunate that there are so many rumors that circulate about mystery shopping, as these rumors do tend to keep people who otherwise would love this job away from it. If you are interested in mystery shopping, spend some time learning more about it, and you may find that it truly is a great job option for you to pursue.