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I am a mystery shopper - AMA

14 replies

MissTerryShopper · 15/07/2018 22:49

Just in my 20th year of being a mystery shopper. Ask me anything!

OP posts:
DollyDayScream · 15/07/2018 22:52


High or Low end?

How does one become a mystery shopper?

Is it well paid?

Do you get to keep your shopping as a perk?

MissTerryShopper · 15/07/2018 23:27

Dolly, I do retail, yes - and lots of other stuff besides. For example: clothing stores, electronics stores, hotel visits, conference bookings, trips to theme parks, national buildings, museums. Car services, banks, mortgages...….you name it, almost every company has used a MS at one time or another.

It isn't well paid generally and particularly when you start out. You are paid a figure for a job but might have to do up to ten jobs a day to make it worthwhile. You then have the reports to write up of course after doing the actual task. Some are well paid in that they would cover a hotel bill for example.

Most jobs you keep the item you've purchased unless of course you are testing the returns procedure.

You become one by signing up to the many many companies online. I work for in excess of 40 companies. Oh - and it's self employed work mainly.

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Belindabauer · 15/07/2018 23:50

How flexible is the job?
Do you have to visit at certain times of day for example .

MissTerryShopper · 16/07/2018 00:07

It's flexible to a point. Of course you can accept or refuse any job from a company. When accepted you are given a brief and it specifies what you are asking/assessing and the timescales involved. Jobs will specify certain times/days etc. I build a day's work with various jobs from various companies, do the work then come home and write the reports (which usually have to be written within 24 hours of the job but sometimes sooner)

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torthecatlady · 16/07/2018 00:08

What's been your favourite mystery shopping experience?

Do you product test as well? I do lots of product testing, but not mystery shopping (its something i'd like to get into).

Do you have another job or can this pay the pills?

torthecatlady · 16/07/2018 00:09

Pay the bills, not pills BlushBlush

Bacere · 16/07/2018 00:11

I always assume adverts for such jobs are dodgy, how do you tell which aren't?

Is there less work now thanks to the internet? Thinking how through receipts Places are always offering 'incentives' to report back online these days.

MissTerryShopper · 16/07/2018 00:21

torthecatlady: I started off doing this part time alongside my main job but now it is my main job :) Took a few years though to build up a reputation.

Favourite experience is difficult, I like loads of them! Love the ones like RSPB and National Trust properties. Nice restaurants are lovely to do. They can vary from cafes to 4* restaurants. I've liked a caravan park one, and the luxury hotels are great because you usually will get a meal and a spa visit.

I was offered a cruise a few years back and had to pull out of it because MIL was taken into hospital. (She died so it was a good thing I hadn't actually gone on it!)

I do product test sometimes, might do a bit more of that soon.

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torthecatlady · 16/07/2018 00:30

It sounds like you get out what you put into it! Thanks for answering, I'll try to think of some more questions Smile

MissTerryShopper · 16/07/2018 00:30

Bacere: any advert that asks you to pay to register IS usually dodgy. I don't think there is less work now, the work has changed though. There is more video and audio shopping now. I used to do this when you did the visit and send the footage in. Now more companies are wanting a report as well which I think is rather naughty so I'm not doing video much now.

I know what you mean about the receipts and surveys asking for feedback. But remember as a shopper they will usually check your report against the CCTV and many times the member of staff will received feedback (and sometimes bonuses) based on your reporting, so it's more detailed than surveys.

Many times I have been somewhere and had such crap service that I have thought "I wish I was MSing at the moment". I've also MSed places and heard one member of staff say to the other that they've had a call from such and such a branch and the mystery shopper is coming today and they then give a description that is so not me. I've also had someone say "Good job you're not mystery shopping me".

Some interesting ones: booking a payment plan at a funeral directors, having eye tests, going ten pin bowling, cinema visits, tes driving a sports car.

For varied work, it's a great job!

OP posts:
Belindabauer · 16/07/2018 23:09

Do you get an allowance for example if you are mystery shopping a tea room, or is everything paid for in advance?
Also are you told specifically what to order or do you order what you fancy?

parklives · 24/07/2018 09:35

Don't know if this thread is dead, but I would like to know if companies use mystery shoppers from different ethnicities, age groups, disabled etc to see how well/differently they are treated?

DorothyGarrod · 24/07/2018 10:47

Great question, park!

DorothyGarrod · 24/07/2018 10:47

And if they don't - they should!

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