Why Mystery Shopping needs to be as consistent as your workouts.

We’re sure you will have noticed how good you feel after a workout. Even the next day you feel good, sure your muscles ache a little, but you have put them to the test and feel strong; you know what your body is capable of. The day after the day after is a different story, though. You ache… a lot! A week later and the ache may be gone, but so is the feeling of accomplishment and your muscles have gone into hibernation again, tensing only to lift your coffee cup or remote control. As with everything in life, consistency is key. 

It’s the same with Mystery Shopping: if you test your customer service muscle regularly, you won’t lose it.


So why is consistency so important to your Mystery Shopping Program?


1 – It’s not a pop quiz: 

Intermittent Mystery Shopping programs inevitably fail as they send the wrong message to your team. It’s not a pop quiz designed to trip them up, it’s a focused series of assessments over time. Those who perform well are rewarded with acknowledgement; those who don’t, are shown how they can improve and build on their customer service skills.


2 – Perfect reports are just as important: 

Sometimes clients may consider stopping their Mystery Shopping program because their team have done so well in previous cycles, they think there is no point to continuing it.


However, it’s not just about identifying problem points, it’s also about recognising excellence. The Above Benchmark team would love to be flies on the wall when Team Members receive their 100% reports. We’re thrilled for them to just read the results. We think the looks on their faces, and the way they carry themselves after that, justifies a consistent program. People like to be recognised and rewarded for their excellence and the most successful Mystery Shopping programs inspire excitement, rather than complacency.  


3 – Detailed comments tell the story: 

It’s not just about the scoring. Well designed Mystery Shopping surveys include compulsory comment sections where shoppers can expand on the answers they selected. It may turn out that the Team Members did do everything right, according to the questions the client chose for their report, but that their manner when offering an upsell was brusque or uncomfortable. Or the restroom sign was not obvious enough, etc. 


4 – Be the first to know about a potential problem, not social media: 

Don’t wait until a potential problem is plastered on your business’s social media pages by unhappy customers. A consistent Mystery Shopping program will identify any issues before they go viral.  


5 – Use it for hiring purposes: 

If you have a consistent Mystery Shopping program you can build it into your hiring procedure so your team know what’s expected of them from the start. Make it a positive part of working for your company, but also make it a necessary part. 


6 – Avoid a pattern: 

If a store is shopped month on and month off, your employees will notice a pattern and they will act accordingly. A consistent program, every month, will negate your team trying to pinpoint when they will be visited. It just becomes an accepted part of working for your company.


7 – Change: 

Just because you have a consistent program in place, does not mean it needs to stagnate. Whilst the majority of the survey may remain the same, you can focus on different areas, ask new questions, change it up, etc. This flexibility provides greater insight into your customers’ experiences. 

Ultimately you not only want to identify the good and the bad, but you want to see sales growth. If you have a consistent program you can really use it to your best advantage, through every facet of your business. 


Take action

At Above Benchmark, we’re passionate about helping our clients deliver exceptional service to improve customer loyalty and increase sales. We believe every business needs a customer service benchmark, so employees know what to work towards.

If you’d like to have more loyal customers and increased sales contact us today for a complimentary 30-minute Customer Service Strategy Session.

Simply call 1300 400 716 and let us help you achieve above your benchmark.