Last month things were hopping!! You had more shops than you could handle, and you were watching your paychecks stack up. But as luck would have it, this month you’re eagerly checking for new shop posts each day, only to be disappointed. What’s a mystery shopper to do?
It Doesn’t Hurt To Ask! Even the best of us experience that dreaded slow period. If you’re like most shoppers, though, there ARE shops available but you’ve been passing them over for some reason. In my area, there are always posts for the same shops. None of the shoppers in my area snatch these up and they sit around for weeks, if not months. They may require a large non-returnable purchase without reimbursement. Or the compensation may be for a service you don’t need, such as an eye exam.
Chances are the schedulers for these shops are getting pretty desperate to find a shopper to fill these jobs. Consider contacting the scheduler and explain your situation. For instance, you’d like to do the shop but don’t need that particular service. Or maybe you don’t need an $80 waffle iron and would like to be able to return it afterwards. If the scheduler has the ability to work with your request, she would probably jump at the chance to get that shop filled.
Don’t stop there, though! Schedulers have been known to provide bonus pay and reimburse your travel expenses to get a shop done. Of course you don’t want to be too greedy and jeopardize your relationship with the scheduler. But if you feel the work or travel required for the shop merits the additional compensation, be bold and ask for what you deserve! If you can’t do as many shops this month as you normally do, why not make more money for the shops you can do?
Extend Yourself! Your dry spell may be very localized. For instance, if you live in a large city, there may plenty of shops available on the other side of town. Sure, it’s farther than you usually want to travel. But if you can hit two or three shops with one visit, it may be worth your while. If the shops have been open for a while, go ahead and ask for travel reimbursement.
Don’t forget to keep track of your mileage for tax purposes! This extra work on your end will end up saving you big bucks on tax day, and will make the extra time and gas expense for your travels well worth your effort.
Shake Things Up! Some providers regularly offer different kinds of assignments, such as audits and merchandising assignments. These aren’t your typical assignments. Merchandising assignments, for instance, typically pay per hour and may take several hours to complete. With these assignments, you will reveal yourself to the store manager and go about your business of setting up a display or other such tasks.
Even if you don’t want to go that far outside of your usual type of shopping assignments, consider a different locale. For instance, if you normally shop grocery stores and restaurants, consider a movie theater trailer check or a shoe store shop. Taking shops outside your normal type of assignments will make you a more experienced shopper and will give you an added income stream during this slow period. And who knows? You may like these new shops and will want to keep doing them even after things pick back up for you again!
You can still make money during this dry spell! Use this as an opportunity to expand your horizons and do shops you normally wouldn’t do. And if the circumstances are right, maximize your profits on those shops by asking for travel or bonus pay.