Oh, sorry. Here's what MYSTERY SHOPPING is: Let's say the client is a fast food restaurant. They wonder how their customer service is. So, they hire a "mystery shopping" company. That mystery shopping company has hundreds of "shoppers" all over the country, who are independent contractors. Typical scenario is: Let's say one of the fast food restaurant locations is in Whatever Town, Tennessee. The mystery shopping company contacts its shoppers in Whatever Town, to see if they would like to do it. When the shopper accepts the job for a certain day & time. Let's say it is a drive-thru. They drive-thru, order what is required to be ordered, and evaluate things like whether the employee smiled or made eye contact, whether they got what they orderd, and the quality of the food. The shopper is then reimbursed for the meal by the mystery shopping company, which is reimbursed by their client - the resturant.
I was just thinking that when I become an RV traveler, I would like to get free meals that way.
I have only met one who has done it. But the one who did was not only sent to visit resteraunts, but also stores or some times specific products. They received reimbursment for the cost of the products as well as some monitary reward. At one time I had a link to the website of the company that they worked for, but I can't find it at the moment.
Turnip, I don't know. Afraid most would get a bad grade from me :laugh: . When I go through one of the drive throughs I generally tell them to just give me whatever they want because I very seldom get what I ordered. Finally decided they figured you were taking it to your dog anyway. I did have a friend whose mother had a job of going in stores and shoplifting (for real) to see if she could get out of the store without being caught
No - the ones you pay to sign up for may not be legitmate. But, there are plenty of companies that are. It is free to sign up, and they DO pay you. Most are on the internet now, and require you to submit the results of your evaluation online. Feedback Plus is www.feedbackplusinc.com - it's free to register, and they are often looking for shoppers in remote areas.
Looked at the website. Sounds like it could be fun. As a retired small businessman, bad customer service is one of the things I always feared. I actually got some of my friends to mystery shop me from time to time, especially when I was out of town.
You should never have to pay to start mystery shopping. Never!
Legitimate companies do not charge you to sign up!
You sign up with a company, choose which jobs you would like to do, request that job, download the paperwork (there are usually questions you will need to answer online), do the job (the paperwork will tell you exactly what you are to do), then go online and submit your report. Quite often you will need to purchase something, like a meal or an item. In that case you will need to either photograph or scan the receipt and send it to the company when you do your report.
Mystery Shopper is one of the all time favorite internet scams. I'm surprised most of you haven't already received tons of spam emails regarding this topic. There is NO centrallized company that handles mystery shopper employment. Use Google to search for <mystery shopper scam fraud rip off> to learn more. :8ball:
Mystery Shop Companies are legitimate. There is even a Mystery Shopping Association, it is at http://www.mysteryshop.org/. It is legitimate as are the companies that are listed on this site.
I have been doing Mystery Shopping for over 6 years. It is most definitely a legitimate occupation. It is also perfect for RVers.
Go to the site above. Check out the Association and the Companies. Judge for yourself.
Remember, though, that you should NEVER need to pay a fee to Mystery Shop. While you may need to pay for your meals or items, you will be reimbursed for your puchases plus paid a fee for the job (called a "shop"). You sign up with individual companies and look for and accept shops from them. Most people who Mystery Shop work for more than one company. You can't usually make much working for just one company.
There are also different types of shops. Most are anonymous, where the store being evaluated does not know that they are being evaluated (yes, this IS perfectly legal), but there are other kinds of shops where you restock a display or make sure that there are current brochures where they are supposed to be.
While there are a lot of scams, there are for practically everything. Check it out for yourselves. The Association above is made up of Companies that abide by certain standards and so do the Shoppers who deal with them. There are certifications for Shoppers also, although they are not required. When you work for them you are not an employee, you are an independent contractor. Most of the companies pay on a regular schedule and most of them now use Direct Deposit or PayPal.
I anxiously await, albeit dubiously hearing from all the folks that sign up for any of these services and start hauling in some dough. FYI in the interest of satisfying my curosity I went to one of the web sites you list and proceeded to go through the process of becoming a shopper. I stopped the minute they started trying to bilk me out of personal and financial information and even attempted to get me to give up my social security number. Being a mystery shopper is one thing being made a sucker by some mystery web site is quite another.
They are not trying to bilk you out of anything. As an independent contractor they will issue you a 1099. For their accounting records, they need to ask these questions. If you really object, email them and ask if you can give the information after you've done your first shop.