Mystery Shop

The trend today has moved towards turning every customer into a mystery shopper, we have too (it's a good thing), either by providing comment cards or more often, by providing a website or phone number on the receipt where the customer is able to register their opinions. However, this methodology suffers a few disadvantages. With any self-selected sampling, it tends to be the extremes that voice their opinion, not necessarily the average customer. That methodology also tends to suffer a very low completion rate. Attempting to collect every customer's opinions is a good strategy, but it shouldn't be considered a perfect substitute for a mystery shopper study, conducted by trained market research professionals.

A typical mystery shop generally consists of one person entering a business and interacting with employees. After the shop is over the secret shopper fills out a questionnaire that may cover any number of topics, including, but deffinitely not limited to:

We also regularly conduct mystery shop studies over the phone and through email.

Mystery shops are a good tool for ensuring that your employees are treating your customers in a manner that is consistent with their training.

Bill Robinson has been conducting mystery/secret shopper studies from Spokane, WA since 1979. Robinson Research has conducted mystery shop studies at restaurants, auto dealers, banks and other financial institutions, fast food restaurants, grocery stores, furniture dealers, health care providers, big box retail stores, clothing stores, shoe stores, malls, tax preparation businesses, and other professional service providers.

Robinson Research never uses secret shoppers recruited by radio advertisements or social media. We only employ trained interviewers who have worked in our office on other projects.

Robinson Research also regularly conducts in-store audits of advertising placements for our clients. In such a case, a marketer may have concerns regarding whether or not their advertisements and marketing materials are being properly displayed. Robinson Research will send out a trained interviewer to surreptitiously audit the store and report back to the client.

Please click here for a full list of the services we offer.