If you’ve never mystery shopped before, you may have questions about how and why it’s done. Who benefits from mystery shopping? Can anybody do it? Is mystery shopping the right type of work for you? Will you get rich quick? Is mystery shopping a legitimate way to make money, or is it a scam? If you don’t find the answers in this list of Frequently Asked Questions, contact us.
Mystery shopping, sometimes known as secret shopping, is a service businesses use to evaluate employees’ selling skills, friendliness, professionalism and integrity; facilities’ appearance, cleanliness and first impressions; and perceived product quality and value. Companies hire mystery shopping providers (MSPs) such as Person to Person Quality to gather information about the customer experience. This information can be used to reward great customer service, train managers and staff, and track improvements in meeting the company’s goals.
Any organization that employs people to work with the public can benefit from mystery shoppers’ insights. Person to Person Quality sends mystery shoppers to evaluate the customer service provided by banks, restaurants, auto dealerships, insurance providers, retailers, and more. These organizations use mystery shoppers’ findings to reward employees who do an excellent job or help train the ones whose skills might need improvement.
Your assignment is designed to meet each client’s needs. We may ask you to eat a meal at a local restaurant and report on your dining experience. We might send you to a local bank to pose as a prospective customer and inquire about checking accounts. You may be asked to visit an auto dealership, as if you are in the market for a new car, to test drive a new vehicle and report on the salesperson’s effectiveness. Some assignments can even be completed at home, just by placing a phone call and asking for detailed information about a product or service.
Mystery shoppers are independent contractors, not employees. They are people like you who want to earn some extra money in their spare time completing assignments that are interesting and convenient for them. Mystery shoppers are a diverse group: stay-at-home spouses, retirees, young professionals, graduate students. There are assignments for shoppers of every age. We may look for senior citizens to evaluate insurance programs, or we may need shoppers in their early twenties to make sure bartenders are verifying patrons’ ages before serving alcohol. Sometimes we have special programs that require only Spanish-speaking or African American shoppers.
As an independent contractor, you can do as much or as little work as you like. You can also register with as many mystery shopping companies as you like. Unlike being an employee, you choose the assignments you want and the dates you want to do them, within the guidelines provided. Some shoppers complete just 1 or 2 assignments per month for us, and some complete 10 or more. All we ask is that once you accept an assignment, you complete it on time and follow the instructions we provide.
For most people, it will not be possible to replace income from a full-time job as a mystery shopper. But mystery shopping can be a great way to supplement your income and have some fun. Many of our shoppers earmark their mystery shopping income for their kids’ or grandkids’ college education, or for a vacation or home renovation projects, or just to have extra spending money.
- Mystery shoppers get PAID for the information they provide.
- Mystery shoppers get TRAINED to perform each assignment.
- Mystery shoppers help businesses ACHIEVE THEIR GOALS and improve the customer experience.
- Mystery shoppers develop RELATIONSHIPS with their schedulers, and the more work they do, the more likely they are to get the best jobs.
No, but you will need reliable transportation to visit the establishments you are shopping. In the case of recorded, phone-based mystery shops, all recordings are made by dialing a special phone number from any standard landline or cell phone. You may also be asked to provide a copy of a representative’s business card. If you do not have a camera, you can make a scan or photocopy of the document.
We pay our shoppers using PayPal, the popular online payment tool used by eBay and many other companies. With PayPal, all we need is a valid email address to pay you. Registering with PayPal is simple at www.paypal.com. You can link your PayPal account to your bank account to make it easy to transfer funds without sharing your sensitive banking information with any mystery shopping provider. Person to Person Quality typically pays shoppers toward the end of the month following the month in which the shop report was submitted. For example, payment for all shops submitted in May goes out near the end of June, and so on.
Person to Person Quality reports the earnings to the IRS and sends a 1099 form to any contractor who earns $600 or more in any calendar year. As an independent contractor, you are responsible for paying taxes and reporting on all of your mystery shopping income, so it is important to keep careful records.
Join us! The first step is to review and accept the terms of our shopper agreement. Then fill out the Person to Person Quality shopper profile to tell us about yourself. Once you’ve completed these two steps, you can login to Person to Person Quality’s shopper portal and start looking for assignments in your area. You can also reach out to us by email or phone. Our full-time staff is here to help you find assignments and answer all of your mystery shopping questions.
Once you accept an assignment, we will provide you with a set of written shopper instructions and a copy of the questionnaire that explain exactly what information you should gather while you are visiting the location. Once you return from your shop, you will login to the Person to Person Quality website and fill out the same questionnaire online. If you have questions, you can contact your scheduler or any member of the Person to Person Quality team.
After you submit an assignment, Person to Person Quality’s editors review your report for accuracy, completeness and readability before approving it and sending it to the client. Each report is assigned a numerical grade from 1 to 10. You can request feedback on your assignment to help improve your work. You can also view your Shopper GPA (the average rating for all shops) when you login and review your Shopper Profile. We also post the full details of our Shopper Rating System on your Person to Person Quality login page.
Person to Person Quality is a member of the Mystery Shopping Providers Association (MSPA) and the Independent Mystery Shoppers Coalition (IMSC), professional industry organizations that screen their members carefully. As a division of ADI Consulting, we also maintain an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. We will never ask you to pay for access to any of our assignments. After all, you are doing the work for us and our clients, not the other way around! When you work with legitimate companies, the payment schedule is clearly defined, and payment is commensurate with the task. An assignment that requires a 15-minute visit will typically pay a smaller amount than one that involves multiple phone calls or extended visits.