Top tips for developing a successful Mystery Shopping Programme
Make sure that it works for the frontline
- A tool to record colleagues doing the right things.
- A mechanism of reward and recognition.
Open door policy
- Share the assessment criteria and welcome questions or concerns through an email hotline.
- Provide a human face to the Mystery Shopper programme.
Regular drumbeat of information to a set schedule
- Focus management activity around results days
- The more visits, the better the picture generated of that unit/team’s performance.
Set some core objectives to govern the programme by
- Review all requested programme changes against the core objectives to keep your programme on track with established, long term business needs.
Build in flexibility to meet developing business needs
- Flexible questions that can be switched on and off – possibly reported outside of the main results
- Protect the value of historic comparisons.
Involvement and buy in across the business
- Regular communication of results.
- Sharing goals and objectives.
Provide context for results against competitors
- Visited same time frame, same mystery shoppers, same mission (excluding of course brand specific elements)
Maintain the mystery: realistic ‘customers’ behaving typically
- Often programmes are corrupted through the introduction of mission driven behaviour requests, which makes the Mystery Shopper stand out.
- Driver of desired behaviour and operational compliance – make sure what you measure is what is most important to customers.