People posing as shoppers
In the past it was common for head offices of major brands to hire young high school or college students to pose as real shoppers at retail outlets. They were then expected to ask the salesman various questions in an attempt to check his patience, knowledge of the brand and range of products along with several other aspects.
In today’s times, several brands look for adults instead of young students. That’s because it is often believed that adults are more capable to judging these aspects without prejudice. Young students may get influenced by superficial factors like looks and this may affect the final judgement or report that is sent to the main manager sitting at another location.
Hiring as per the sector
Several agencies actually provide trained and experienced mystery shoppers today. These professional mystery shopping companies are entrusted with the task of sending out capable staff to various retail outlets based on the sector. In the past, it was common for clothing and accessories brands to hire mystery shoppers to judge the expertise of the sales staff. Nowadays the concept of using mystery shopping as a technique is common to various industries and sectors.
Some of the most common sectors include banking and finance, food manufacturers, electronic manufacturers among others.
Using phone methods
Many companies may feel that face to face sales evaluation may not be a comprehensive enough way to judge how a retail outlet works. Some professional mystery shopping companies may use alternate methods like phone calls to make a proper evaluation instead.
For instance, calling a retail team and asking them about the availability of a particular product and related questions will help to judge their knowledge as well as to verify their politeness and patience, key factors that are essential in the service industry.