Type: Review
Pages: 3 | Words: 639
Reading Time: 3 Minutes

Mystery shopping is a method that employed by provides who are involved in mystery shopping as well as research companies with intent of measuring the quality if the service in a retails as well as in gathering of information that is related to a certain product or service. It is also referred to as mystery consumer; it can be carried out by an individual who is referred to as mystery shopper who the establishment he is supposed to evaluate has little information about. The mystery shoppers have specific tasks that they are meant to perform, the tasks may include purchasing a product, airing of complaints, or has been informed to behave in a certain method (Hazlerig 2007, p. 43). The mystery shopper can also ask questions and later ensure that they provide a report or feedback to the organization based on the shopping experience that they had at the retail shop.

The practice of mystery shopping has been in operation for many years and it was more common in the 1940s and was used to measure the integrity of a certain business. The tools that are employed in mystery shopping include the use of questionnaires, recordings either video or audio. The practice can be employed across almost all industries with it being more popular with retail stores in the United States. It is also common in hotels, restaurants, banks, apartments, transport system among other service industry. In the developing world such as in the United States as well as the United Kingdom, mystery shopping is used in the provision of feedback on the consumer services that are provided by the government agencies as well as in aid organizations (Newhouse 2004, p. 76).

When an organization decides to engage the services of a mystery shopper agency or professional, the company will proceed to develop a survey model that will make a definition of the information to be gathered and the factors that the organization plans on measuring. This are combined and an instrument of survey is drawn. Some of the information that is important to an individual or body conducting the mystery survey includes the language used by the sales employees, the names of the employees, the level of speed used in service, the hygienic and cleanliness of the store or restaurant. Also of importance is the compliance of the establishment to be evaluated to the set standards by the regulatory bodies as well as the storage and presentation in the store among other concepts.

The shopper should blend with the other shopper and should not be easily identified or look different, this will assist in effective evaluation as the employees will conduct themselves in their usual normal ways. They may secretly need to take pictures of return purchases measurements among others but this should be done secretly. They will need a timer to measure the speed of service and it is important for these individuals to be licensed so as to work as mystery shoppers (Hazlerig 2007, p. 35).

The concept employed in mystery shopping is a clear method even though the name used may mislead to mean something else. Some organizations refer to it as shopping in secret, performance evaluation, and evaluation of the front line as well as service checks. Mystery shopping will enable an organization to truly get the image of the organization within the perspective of the consumer. Known researches that employ mystery shopping are already aware of what is needed of them and what they need to evaluate in a certain premises. Mystery shopping can be employed by managers in them to effectively have an evaluation of the practices the business is engaged in. It also provides information on the performance of certain key employees and certain deliverables; all this is based on the views of a customer who is not biased but will provide an objective assessment.

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