Mystery shopping investigation: What, when and how?

At one point or another, we all must have wondered about the term “success”. What makes someone highly successful and others not so much? Is it natural talent, skills developed by an individual, competitive spirit, hard work, dedication towards the achievement of goal or a healthy combination of all these factors?

Whatever it is, one thing is certain. Reaching a high position in life is not the only thing which is important. What matters the most is maintaining that position for a long period of time because that’s where the true challenge begins. When we take a deep look at this concept, we can see that surviving in today’s corporate world is very similar to this notion. Extreme competition and pressure to be better in every aspect are some of the major features of this corporate world and to survive here, one has to constantly monitor and regulate the working conditions of their organisation. Business organisations need continuous management and control to sustain their position in the industry.

Let’s have a look at the following example to learn more about this.

Suppose, there is a fancy footwear store dealing in both male as well as female footwear and has recently introduced Kids section too. Not only that, some new staff members have also been hired in this store for looking after the three main footwear sections. At this point, you must be thinking that where is any problem in this situation? So, let’s move further and have a look into the actual cause of concern in this example.

This footwear store has made some significant changes in its operation by hiring fresh employees and by introducing new varieties of footwear but after some months, it has been suffering losses & getting negative response from the customers. People are not as happy with the store as they used to be before and the reason for such a change in the attitude of the customers is still a mystery to the store owner. Now, on looking at this example we can say that there can be many factors which may be affecting the store. There may be something wrong with the service provided by the staff members or quality of the footwear may not be up to the mark or footwear sold at the store may be overpriced. The reason for downfall in the sales can be anything!!! That’s what makes this scenario even more confusing. So, how can the store owner get to know the real reason behind this? Without knowing the actual reason for a defect, is it possible to correct it?

Don’t worry! we are not going to leave you alone with all these questions.

The answer to all these questions can be found under the main subject of this blog post – “MYSTERY SHOPPING

Let’s look at the concept of “Mystery shopping” under the sub-heads of what, when and how?

What is Mystery shopping?

This is the main question which arises here – What do we mean by Mystery shopping? And the answer to this question is very simple. Mystery shopping is a way of gathering information about the quality of goods and services from the customer’s point of view. Through mystery shopping, one can learn that how an organisation can be improved and get better than before in terms of quality and customer satisfaction. It is commonly used by restaurants, hotels, fast food outlets, furniture stores, grocery stores, shopping malls and theatres etc. where providing good quality of customer service is considered as a core value of operation.

When is mystery shopping conducted?

While running a business, there are times when one wants to know about the performance of their business organisation in their absence so that drawbacks can be realized within time and effectively controlled. Through the evaluation of major areas in an organisation, one can know whether there are any weak points in their organisation and if some negative issues are found in that process, then necessary measure are taken to improve the situation. So, to answer the above mentioned question that “when is mystery shopping conducted?” we can say that it is conducted when a person wants to assess the quality of service and goods sold by his/her business organisation.

How is mystery shopping conducted?

Mystery shopping is conducted by marketing agencies, advertising agencies, mystery shopping service providers, private investigators etc.

In this process, a group of people are trained to pose as customers to visit the establishment to be evaluated. This particular group are called as “Mystery shopper” or “Secret shopper”. During their training, they are informed about the specific areas of the establishment which are to be thoroughly assessed to record their experience. Then, they visit the business establishment as told and make a careful observation about all the essential features like product display, product quality, service provided by the staff, amount charged on the products, compliance with the organisation’s rules and regulations etc. Then finally, after their visit they make a proper report on their experience as a customer and submit it to the owner of the business establishment (the one who has opted for this service). A certain amount of money is charged by these mystery shoppers for this service.

So, this was all about mystery shopping and how it is performed to evaluate a business organisation. Every business owner has a dream to conduct his/her business in a particular way but sometimes the actual product may not be equal to the vision and that’s where this service – “MYSTERY SHOPPING” comes into action. Through this service, you can identify the disparity and take steps to correct it accordingly.

City Intelligence Pvt. Ltd. is one of the prime investigation agencies of our time which is highly skilled and experienced in providing mystery shopping service. With an experience of more than two decades, we have created a reputation and a special name for ourselves in this private investigation industry. As a service provider, we understand that it is extremely important for an organisation to perform actions according to their vision for maintaining their position in the industry otherwise it would be complete chaos.

So, if you are in need of mystery shopping service… Contact City Intelligence.

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