What is Mystery Shopping?
Every year thousands of companies pay mystery shoppers to go into their stores and conduct secret shops to help the company get better at what it does. Mystery shoppers give an unbiased customer response to their experience. The information they provide to the company can then be used to help the company improve what it does in the future. It doesn't matter what type of business it is, mystery shoppers work across all industries. If a company deals directly with customers or clients, mystery shoppers can help to give insight as to how to improve their service and increase sales.
Customer Satisfaction and Experience
Many companies wonder what customers think when they walk into their stores, go through the purchasing process and leave with the items they purchased. Mystery shopping gives a company an inside look into the customer experience and provides it with a way to gauge customer satisfaction. This is extremely important when trying to find ways to innovate and grow a company's customer base. Without the reports that mystery shoppers submit, companies would be missing out on important information about their business and they would have less of an idea as to how to improve.
Audit of Company's Employees
Another important role that mystery shopping provides an insight into how employees are interacting with customers and potential customers. It can be difficult to know how employees conduct themselves when a manager or supervisor is not around. Mystery shoppers are tasked with interacting with specific employees and providing the company with the names of the people they interacted with. This helps to ensure that all of a store's employees are conducting themselves in the right way and giving the customer the best experience possible.
Face-to-face and call-in mystery shoppers offer a unique, inside perspective on day-to-day operations. They are equipped to ask specific questions to elicit particular responses from frontline representatives. These responses can then be evaluated for technical compliance based on pre-established protocol standards. Once problem areas are pinpointed, leaders can draft solution strategies and put them into action. This data-driven technique leads to increased compliance even in large corporations with diverse locations and channels. Companies that have opted for multiple rounds of mystery shoppers over a 9-year span have reported more than a 50% increase in frontline service compliance.
In the contemporary climate, this increased compliance can translate into revived trust from consumers. Visible efforts to diagnose and address compliance issues can work to restore the financial industry’s tattered reputation, by reassuring the public that banks are responding appropriately to the current national debacle. More specifically, by hiring mystery shoppers and publishing report findings, banks can show their clients that they are serious about conducting business in an ethical, code-compliant manner. Transparency plays a powerful role in rebuilding good faith, and mystery shopping offers banking professionals a way to bridge the trust gap they helped create.
Multi Channel Testing
Mystery shopping is not limited to just face-to-face testing, these days clients demand that all customer facing channels are tested such as:
- Call centres
- Social Media
- Chat and SMS
- Emails and EDM campaigns
- Relationship Managers
- Third party dealers and brokers