Whether you are here to learn how to design a good secret shopping program or whether you are here to compare different programs available in the market, we have got you covered!
Mystery shopping is a research methodology that helps brands to ensure consistent customer experience throughout their locations. Trained shoppers interact with the brand’s services and products and objectively report their experience.
Different companies design different software, but the baseline in every mystery shopping software must remain the same. So, here are some key aspects that must go into launching an effective mystery shopping program.
1. Starting with a Strategy
The absence of clear objectives often leads to programs that don’t deliver clear values. Starting with a sound strategy in mind for the program is the foremost step.
You must clearly define why the business needs a mystery shopping service, how it will use the mystery shopping data for improvement, or what is the ultimate goal.
Answering all vital questions will ensure the program addresses all the underlined objectives.
2. Define the Key Metrics
This is the step where you identify and define all key metrics for the mystery shopping program based on the initial strategy. Also, take care of the following things:
- Keep the customers in mind: The program must be based on what the customers need, not what is important to the organization.
- Define the requirements of the mystery shopper: In this step, the program must identify the requirements of the mystery shopper. This step will ensure the elimination of unnecessary costs and ill-informed insights.
- Create a thorough questionnaire: Any good mystery shopping service should prepare a thorough questionnaire in advance. This questionnaire must contain the questions that the mystery shopper will answer after their fieldwork. It must be objective and tied to the mystery shopping platform’s objectives.
Ensure that these metrics are simple and focused and maintain the integrity of your program.
3. Ensure Optimal Reporting
Another key aspect of any such program is to ensure optimal reporting. The mystery shoppers and the data provided by them should be presented in a flexible form. The program must be integrated with reporting platform that can easily visualize the key metrics.
The data fed will be crucial for the long-term success of the business. Therefore, the processing and dealing of results must be communicated properly.
4. Design an Analytical Plan
A good mystery shopping platform should be designed with an analytical plan. When you receive all the results, you must assess them with some base model. The platform or program must have these planned to identify and measure the improvements or how the brand performed.
All these aspects of a secret shopping program result in actionable insights succeeding in its objectives, no matter the company or industry size.
When used effectively, secret shopping can become a powerful performance management tool. The results systematically break down the intended and desired customer experience. Thus, the mystery shopping program drives organizational performance change and creates awareness around important initiatives or standards.