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3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Mystery Shopping Company

3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Mystery Shopping Company

You may have heard plenty about the benefits of mystery shopping to bolster your marketing research, but with all the different options out there, it may be a challenge to narrow down which of the legitimate mystery shopping companies out there is the right match for your company. With so many different factors to consider, who is the best choice to conduct your business’s customer service audits? There are many things to look at when choosing a mystery shopping company to work with, but here are the top 3:


What is the price per shop? Your company should be able to explain to you how the pricing for each shop scenario is derived, including how much is allocated to secret shopper payment and the fee for managing the program and logistics. 

Is there a setup fee? Some companies charge a setup fee while others do not. Finding out if any extra money is necessary to get your program started is a critical piece of information to find out before signing on with a company.

You may also want to consider the flexibility of your schedule, as things may come up, and you may need to cancel a mystery shopping job for any number of reasons. Different companies have different policies around this, so you will want to take this into consideration.


What do the completed shop reports look like? Do they have any sort of dashboard? You should ask for a sample or a demo of the reporting options to ensure that it is easy to read and understand all the information you’re looking for.

What is the quality assurance process? How quick is the report turnaround time? It is extremely important to receive the shop reports as soon as possible so that you can deal with anything the team comes across in a timely manner. Another essential component is to have confidence in the legitimacy and consistency of the information.


The main point of contact be during the partnership is one of the most critical points to keep in mind as your begin this new relationship. You should ask companies directly how communication will work and what to do if they need to make any changes to the program. How quickly will they be able to respond to any questions or needs that you may have?

You must also ensure that the company you choose has experience gauging customer experience within your industry. How many shops have they conducted? You should ask for references and testimonials to ensure that they have been around the block and know how to deliver the information that you are seeking from your program.

One Myth: Shoppers

The top question we receive in the sales process is, “who are your shoppers?” It is a good question – people want to know who will be going in to complete the shops. The truth is that most national mystery shoppers work with many companies, so it is primarily a similar pool of people that we are all using. The better question is what mechanisms they have in place to attract the best possible shoppers, as well as the report template strategy. A properly structured report will deliver the same results — no matter who the shopper is — if the questions are presented well to take out subjectivity.

If you’re looking for a mystery shopper program that checks off all the necessary boxes, 360 Relay might have the right solutions for you. Our team handles in-person, online, and phone shops for industries such as fast food, grocery stores, theme parks, and more. Get in touch with us today to find out more about our process!