Where did The Mystery Shopper Meaning Come From?
The mystery shopper meaning dates back to the 1940s. Wilmark, a research company at the time, would send a number of private investigators to different stores and banks to make sure the staff working there weren’t stealing company assets. This service proved very popular, and soon, it was branded as ‘mystery shopping’. This is where the mystery shopper meaning initially came from.
Changes to the Mystery Shopper Meaning During the 50s
In the UK, mystery shopping became a bit less popular during the 50s. This was largely due to the fact that Britain was still recovering from the devastation that World War Two left behind. Nevertheless, the mystery shopper meaning took a shift. Less was it about checking up on theft by staff and more leaned towards checking customer service and operations of both stores and their competitors. Ultimately, mystery shoppers allowed this to happen.
Mystery Shopping in the 80s
By the 80s, mystery shopping had really taken off, and many new mystery shopping companies began to emerge. However, for the mystery shoppers themselves, this was a particularly difficult era with regards to things like communication. Without the invent of e-mail and the fax machine only just emerging, paperwork had to be mailed back and forth to the mystery shopping company, which could be frustrating. Typically, assignment details were delivered over the phone, and the missing out of crucial details was an all too common occurrence.
Mystery Shopping Today
Thankfully, things have come a long way in the mystery shopping arena since its inception in the 40s. It has never been easier for mystery shoppers to communicate with their employers via the internet and e-mail. Not to mention finding mystery shopping positions as well. To this day, the popularity of mystery shopping remains strong. New positions are continually being advertised and new shoppers are always eager to get on board with their favourite brands.