How does Mystery Shopping Work – The 5-Step Process


Mystery shopping is a modern way to handle your multiple-location business correctly. And as important as a result, so are the steps involved in achieving it.

Today, we will familiarize you with the best step-by-step process of how does mystery shopping work and how it benefits your business.

What is Mystery Shopping?

We are beginning with a simple question and explaining the idea behind this marketing research method.

Mystery shopping or Secret Shopping is the modern way to monitor and measure the execution of customer experience in your locations. A trained individual pretends to be a prospective customer to assess the interaction with the staff on predetermined criteria.

Five Steps Involved in Mystery Shopping

Here are the details of all the essential steps that would answer your question of how does mystery shopping work; these steps allow you to evaluate your business through the customer’s eyes objectively:

Step 1: Design Mystery Shopping Questionnaires

People must remember the first and foremost step in mystery shopping – Design! The mystery shopping service you chose must understand your business and the aspects that matter the most to you.

At times, you might have certain things in mind that you want to be evaluated for your business. The service provider can then prepare the questionnaires accordingly and, thus, explicitly assess the critical assessment areas that matter to your brand.

Step 2: Measure and Record Observations

When it comes to answering the question what is secret shopping or how it works, people generally think of this step solely. It involves a trained officer (a mystery shopper) going undercover in your brand locations and recording all his observations.

Based on step 1, mystery shoppers will measure the required brand standards. This step helps you collect objective metrics along the customer journey.  

Step 3: Review the Results

If you think this is the step where you analyze the results, then you are wrong. This step involves the mystery shoppers and the mystery shopping service team reviewing all the field records to avoid errors.

Thus, it is an essential step in how does mystery shopping work. All the details are cross-checked before it is presented to you for further analysis.

Step 4: Analyze the Data Received

This is the step where all the gaps are revealed. You can analyze the field records and see where your business lacks. You can check whether all brand standards were met in the location.

Many mystery shopping service providers already provide dynamic results for a better comparison. The new technology seamlessly brings all the field data and allows a holistic evaluation.

Step 5: Act and Take Proper Measures

Now that you are familiarized with what is secret shopping and its basic steps, here is the final step in this process.

This step is where you already know the weaknesses in your brand locations and make an informed decision. You take all the steps needed to fill the gaps and improve customer experience.

Thus, mystery shopping allows you to explore new ways to meet and exceed customer experiences and preferences for your brand.


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