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You Can Sometimes Tell When a Company Starts a Program July 22, 2013

Posted by Ann Michaels & Associates in Uncategorized.

Isn’t it funny, after being in the business for a while, that you can almost tell when a company starts a mystery shopping program?

This happened to me recently, and it made me giggle. There is a store I visit all too frequently, simply because it’s close to my home and it’s an easy in and out type of store. I’ve been shopping there for years without incident, until a few weeks ago.

All of a sudden, every employee and their mother was greeting me as I walked past, offering help in the aisles, and being overly friendly to a point of induced paranoia. When I went to make a purchase, the cashier enthusiastically described their loyalty card, suggested a sale item near the register, and was over the top friendly in her parting statement.

I felt like I entered another universe, until it hit me that they probably just stated a mystery shopping program and were on their toes.

On subsequent visits, even to different locations nearby, I had the same experience. It actually creeped me out a bit, because it was something I was not used to in this retailer.

It died down after a couple of weeks, so I’m thinking they’ve calmed down a bit and it’s business as usual.

Have you ever had this experience? From our perspective, it can be humorous to see this behavior change in employees, and we know that it is likely that they started a mystery shopping program recently.

At any rate, it’s good to see that our industry does make a difference in customer service levels!


1. Sharon - July 22, 2013

I was in a store where you need to have multiple interactions with employees. As I approached one employee, I heard the store manager reminding him about the Mystery Shoppers, and said “For all we know the Mystery Shopper could be in the store right now” I had a hard time keeping a straight face.

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