Mystery shopping guidelines and how they help you plan
I’ve got three mystery shops to conduct today over lunch time (or is it dinner time?) but it’s one of them I’m going to concentrate on for the blog. The mystery shopping guidelines you must follow help you to plan. I’m going to look at before, during and after to show a little bit of the preparation and the work that’s involved in a mystery shop.
Mystery shopping guidelines before you set out
The mystery shopping guidelines state this shop must be conducted between the hours of 12:30 and 14:00 today in a town approximately 10 miles away from where I live. It’s in a higher-end national restaurant chain and it’s somewhere I enjoy eating. The visit is for a minimum of two people, so I’m taking the other half along with me and there are specific things that I need to order off the menu. This is quite typical of a mystery shop to get the shoppers to order certain items and it can be for one of a few reasons-
- Testing staff knowledge
- Seeing if team members recommend other complementary products
- To fit into a meal deal scenario
- The try out new products on the menu
- To see if the presentation is correct
On this occasion there are several questions about the opening experience in the restaurant and the mystery shop company wants to know things like-
- As you approach the restaurant, take note of the cleanliness
- Take note whether there was a greeter
- You will be asked how long it took for a greeting
- Take note whether the table was clean and tidy and ready for service
- Please take note whether the menu is clean and undamaged
- Note how long it takes for the employee to offer you a drink
As you can see, the company sees the first interaction as important and that by setting the scene and making the customer comfortable straight away, that they can give a better experience.
And what the mystery shopping guidelines mean for you
This is the first part, the before and as part of this, I’ve printed out the questionnaire ready to fill in as soon as I can after leaving the restaurant. I have double-checked the location of the restaurant and I know where I can park nearby. The mystery shopping guidelines state you should sort this as soon as possible.
It’s now a case of conducting the mystery shop. And then of completing the data entry on the computer when I get back this afternoon or this evening. My next blog will be in situ at the restaurant. And I’ll have to be as discreet as possible to not raise suspicions that I am a mystery shopper.
Interested in mystery shopping? Do you want to find out what it takes to be a mystery shopper? Well there is help available. My Amazon Kindle book about becoming a mystery shopper and it’s available now.