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What Does a Mystery Shopper Need? February 5, 2009

Posted by Ann Michaels & Associates in Uncategorized.
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Over the next two days, we would like to share information on tools, websites, and other items that will help you as a mystery shopper. We’ve collected ideas from many shoppers, and have also used tips and tricks from our own staff, as they are all mystery shoppers as well.

This post will include information on general office supplies and record keeping items to have on hand. Tomorrow’s post will share sites and tips for preparing for your shops, and things to use during and after your shop.

General Office Supplies

Printer, fax and/or scanner
These products have come down in price over the last few years. In fact, many “all in one” products include a fax, printer, and scanner, making it more affordable. You can get a basic, no frills model relatively inexpensively. Places you may also want to consider shopping include Ebay, Overstock, or even scouting out Craig’s List for deals.

If you have a printer and don’t want to purchase both a scanner and fax, the scanner purchase would be the best option. Not only can you scan receipts and business cards to file on your computer, many companies are asking for these items to be uploaded to your report.

Record keeping tools

Keeping good records is essential in this business. There are a few items that will help you in this effort.

Spreadsheet program
We’ve talked about methods of keeping good records using a spreadsheet system. It is simple and cost effective. What if you don’t have an Excel program and don’t want to spend the money on this program? There are free sites, such as numsum, that will allow you to create spreadsheets.

Pendaflex/accordion style folders
These are excellent items for keeping track of receipts and business cards, as well as other items as they pertain to your mystery shops. Stapling together all items from a shop and storing them in this type of file, sorted by month or client, will be a great help come tax time.

Your computer
Organization is simple with a computer. You can create files in your email program to keep track and organize emails by mystery shopping company. This way, should you need to refer to information, it is easily found.

You can also create folders on your computer to keep track of your work. Again, you can create a mystery shopping folder with subfolders for each mystery shopping company. You can also create subfolders within each folder for each month to file away any important documents. If you’re not sure how to do it, I’ve found a simple instruction guide to follow.

Come back tomorrow for more information on helpful websites, tools, and products to help you succeed in mystery shopping.

Until next time…happy shopping!



1. Liz ferguson - February 20, 2009

As a brand new mystery shopper, this information is very helpful. I am embarking on a new career which I’m looking forward to being successful in. These tips and ideas will no doubt make me much more successful. Thank you.

mysteryshoppinglearningcenter - February 20, 2009

Hi Liz,

Welcome to the mystery shopping industry! I’m glad you have found this information helpful. Our goal is to help those who are new to the industry as well as those who have been mystery shoppers for some time. Good luck to you!

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