Many important decisions are involved in selecting just the right video mystery shopping company for your business. It is important to choose a company that is a good fit with your training needs. The best source is professional referrals. Ask your colleagues and friends in the industry what company they use, why they prefer them, and what makes the partnership a good fit. These people will give you an honest and unbiased answer. Sometimes that’s all you need to know, and the rest will fall into place.
Here are just a few items to consider when looking for a mystery shop provider company:
- How long has the company been in business, and do they have a proven track record?
- Do they have a track record for outstanding Customer Service/Communication?
- What is the quality of the shoppers they utilize?
- How friendly is the staff, and are they easy to work with?
- What are their parameters for turn-around time?
- Are the key players in the company hands on?
- What is the quality of the final product?
- What type of reporting system does the company utilize?
The main purpose of a mystery shop company is to measure and evaluate the customer service provided by your company, so they need to set the bar high and offer the most outstanding service possible to you, their client. Their scheduling managers need to be available to coach the shoppers in the field so that the client gets the information they are seeking. The scheduling managers need to be available to you while shops are being performed in case of any changes in schedule, which is a norm in the industry. They need to be able to communicate these changes to the shoppers at a moment’s notice. Flexibility is the key to making sure that any changes get implemented in a timely manner.
There are certain questions to ask yourself when choosing a company:
- Price is a big item, and sometimes a big determining factor, but it’s not always a good idea to go with the lowest price. You get what you pay for. Do you want to drive a Kia or a BMW?
- Is there any upfront money involved, or any contracts or service agreements you may have to commit to?
- How are the videos stored, and what is the length of time they are stored?
- Does the mystery shop company have a standard scoring system, or are you able to customize a scorecard for your particular training needs?
- Are the videos/scorecards online and interactive, or do you receive a separate email or link for the scorecard, and then the actual video is in another location?
- How does the company handle Follow-Up Tracking? Is it handled in house, or does the company rely on the shoppers themselves to track it?
Your final decision may be an easy one to make, or it may take time to thoroughly research. Many clients stick with one company and are very loyal, and would never think of changing. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Many clients take their preferred mystery shop provider company with them when they transfer to another company, and this is the best compliment they could offer. A good reputation in the industry is a most valued asset. Don’t be afraid to ask around – and if you have had an excellent experience with a mystery shop company, don’t be afraid to spread the good news.