Tips to Keep Mystery Shopping Fun: Find the Right Shops For You

There are so many different reasons why mystery shoppers shop. The large majority of them likely revolve around financial reasons of some sort or another. But there may be other reasons as well, such as a true desire to help companies improve customer service or a need to satisfy that inner shop-aholic with a constructive activity.

We’ve all heard stories of the mystery shopper who got paid to go on a $7,000 vacation shop, but most of us are realistic in our paycheck expectations. Let’s face it, we are not going to get rich mystery shopping.

So whatever your reasons for shopping may be, you have to keep mystery shopping fun or you won’t want to continue doing it.

Do What You Like. Mystery shopping touches so many different industries, such as banking, retail, entertainment, food, and gas. If you’re trying to lose weight and are trying to stick to your diet plan, restaurant shops – even at healthy restaurants – may not be right for you. Accepting a restaurant shop may end up costing you in the guilt department.

Likewise, if you are a bookworm and don’t enjoy movies, you may not get much enjoyment from checking trailers in a movie theater assignment.

As much as you need or want the money, there are so many different kinds of shops available that you do not need to accept just any type of job that comes along. Be selective and enjoy the shops you request.

The Devil’s in the Details. We’ve all had that shop that pays under $10 and has 60 or more questions on the report. Worse yet, half of those are open-ended, essay-style questions, covering so many minute details that you could not have possibly made note of every single one without a pad and paper. Be sure the pay is worth the work required, or you will wind up feeling cheated and unhappy with your shop.

Timing is Everything. Most of us have pretty busy lives. Some of us work full-time jobs and shop on lunch breaks, evenings and weekends. Some of us have children who are on their own schedules – soccer, homework, play dates. Some of us get up before dawn, while others pull a night-shift.

Look at the timing required of the shop and ensure it will fit into your schedule without cramping your life. Is it a restaurant shop that requires you to shop between 11am and 1pm on a specific day? Is it a gas station shop that requires you to shop after 9pm on a weeknight?

If your work schedule or sleep schedule or any other schedule is going to suffer, pass on that shop. More shops will come your way soon.

How Do You Get There? If a shop requires you to drive to or through a bad part of town, or if perhaps you have to get on the interstate at rush hour, think twice about accepting that shop.

Before you accept, consider the stress of the commute and ensure the pay that is offered is reasonable for what you personally will undertake getting to that location. Another shopper may have an easier time doing that shop, so don’t feel guilty passing it up.

Spend a little bit of time analyzing the details and requirements of the shop. Ensure the shop is something you can happily commit to before you apply and accept the shop.

Do all of this, and your mystery shopping experience will be much happier! You’ll avoid the notorious ‘shopper burnout,’ and enjoy mystery shopping that much more.