What to Expect as a Mystery Shopper
Understanding what is expected of you as a mystery shopper ultimately helps you decide whether or not you feel the position might be right for you. It is important to understand then, the realities of mystery shopping employment so you can make the right decision in terms of your employment.
While mystery shopping might offer you extra money and flexible work hours doing something you love, also understand that sometimes those work hours are at times you would other wise have occupied. It isn’t uncommon to be on assignment during a weekend or in the evening, a time you would normally not be working. Additionally, mystery shopping can be very fun and allows you to shop places and meet people as you would in your free time – but it is also a job that needs to be taken seriously. Some market research companies and mystery shopping providers are under large contracts to provide accurate and professional information to businesses. Thus, as a mystery shopper if you accept an assignment it is critical that you complete it before the deadline. Work schedules are often flexible for mystery shoppers and allow you to work when you have time, but that doesn’t mean committing to a project and then not completing it. You will be held liable for the time you commit.
Some mystery shopping providers claim that you can make full time incomes as a mystery shopper. While this is sometimes true, it is very rare and most mystery shoppers employ jobs and incomes that are viewed as part-time or supplemental. Some jobs however, might require full-time hours at some point but not at others. For example, an experienced mystery shopper might accept an assignment where they work all day for a portion of a week, but then not at all the following week. Thus, the work schedule is flexible and allows shoppers to work when they have free time, but it can be inconsistent. As a result the pay can be inconsistent too.
The best way to get the most out of your mystery shopping experience is to understand that for most people it is a fun way to make extra money. Most mystery shoppers don’t evaluate first class plane flights or tropical cruises. Some get the opportunity to evaluate fancy restaurants and attend concerts but even these mystery shoppers are required to take diligent notes and evaluate the experience from a professional point of view. If you are dedicated to becoming a mystery shopper of this sort, there is nothing to stand in your way. For the majority of mystery shoppers out there however, it is a part-time job that offers supplemental incomes for people who love shopping.