How Mystery Shoppers Can Improve Your Customer Experience

  • book T-ROC Staff
  • calendar May 22, 2023
  • clock 6 mins read

Have you ever gone to a store and felt like you were in the twilight zone? You know the feeling – you can’t find anyone to help, no one knows where anything is, and everyone seems oblivious to your presence. It’s not an ideal customer experience. But what if there was a way to get real-time feedback on how customers feel about your store or restaurant? Mystery shoppers are the answer! Mystery shoppers can provide valuable insights into your customer experience and help you improve it in ways that may not be obvious from behind the counter. Read on to learn more about how mystery shopping can help improve your customer experience.


What is a Mystery Shopper?


A mystery shopper is someone who visits your business anonymously to evaluate your customer experience. They’re hired by businesses to give them an unbiased and objective view of how customers feel when they shop or dine at their establishment. The shoppers are typically given a list of tasks to complete, such as checking the cleanliness of the store, the availability of products, and how helpful employees are. They then provide detailed reports on their findings which can be used by businesses to identify areas for improvement in their customer experience.


Benefits of Mystery Shopping


Using mystery shoppers can provide many benefits for businesses, including:


  • Identifying areas for improvement – Mystery shoppers can help businesses identify areas for improvement in their customer experience that may have otherwise gone unnoticed. For example, if employees aren’t providing helpful service or products are out of stock, mystery shoppers will be able to pinpoint these issues and businesses can take appropriate steps to remedy them.


  • Improving customer service – By gathering feedback from mystery shoppers about how helpful staff members were during their visit, businesses can use this information to improve the level of service they provide and ensure customers have a positive shopping experience.


  • Understanding customer preferences – Mystery shoppers can also provide useful insights into what customers like and don’t like about your business. This information can help you make changes that meet customers’ needs and preferences more closely, leading to increased satisfaction and loyalty.

Key Steps for Setting Up a Mystery Shopping Program

Once you have decided to invest in a mystery shopping program, there are several key steps you need to take in order to set it up effectively:


  • Define objectives – Start by clearly defining your objectives so that you know what kind of feedback you want from mystery shoppers (e.g., product availability or quality) and how best to measure it (e.g., using surveys).


  • Choose a provider – Search for a provider with quality standards that always have your business in mind. At T-ROC, we provide the intel you need to make the right decisions for your business. Our mystery shoppers undergo extensive training to ensure they never blow their covers and deliver the truth so you can boost sales.


  • Set parameters – Determine how often you want your shops completed (e.g., once per month) as well as what types of shops will be done (e.g., regular shops vs special projects). You should also decide who will receive feedback from the shops (e.g., store managers) so they can take appropriate action when needed.


  • Monitor performance – Regularly reviewing data collected by mystery shoppers is important in order to ensure you’re getting maximum value from your investment in this program and making necessary improvements accordingly.


Best Practices for Maximizing Your ROI from Mystery Shoppers

To get the most out of your mystery shopping program, follow these best practices:


  • Focus on high-value tasks – Make sure that each shop focuses on tasks that matter most for improving customer experience rather than just checking off items on a list without really giving any thought or care to it. For example, focus on assessing employee behavior rather than just counting products available if this is more relevant for improving customer satisfaction with your business.
  • Invest in training – Make sure employees understand why you’re implementing a mystery shopping program and train them on how they should behave when being evaluated by shoppers. This will ensure they put their best foot forward when interacting with customers.
  • Collect additional insights – In addition to collecting feedback from shoppers, consider other sources such as online reviews, social media comments, etc. This will give you even more insight into what customers think about your business.


Investing in a mystery shopping program makes good business sense because it helps maximize return on investment by giving valuable insights into customers’ experiences with products or services offered at stores or restaurants. Following best practices like focusing on high-value tasks, investing in training, and collecting additional insights, together with implementing actions based on examiner’s reports, businesses would be able to create better experiences for their customers while increasing sales and profits over time.

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