To improve sales you need knowledge. Knowledge of your service. Knowledge of what customers expect. Know the behavior of your staff, their level of professional knowledge and skills, their sales skills, their problem-solving skills, listening skills, empathy, their kindness, and how your staff behaves in a manner consistent with the philosophy and with the climate inside the store. These are a few of the benefits of mystery shopping.
Why Mystery Shopping
In fact, you may have already undertaken some assessments, such as:
– Feedback forms
– Surveys (online or offline)
– Internal evaluations by staff
– Direct mail-out to customers
– Questionnaires in journals
But these methods often don’t identify opportunities to increase sales, nor do they give you concrete answers on what is needed to improve your service.
Customer Service ratings must be detailed to allow for direct service improvement. If the problems to improve are large, you may not expect the average customer to be able to analyze and identify the real problem. It is also difficult to have a detailed survey on hand as the customer takes time to complete it.
Companies often resort to offering a reward or other incentive to complete the survey.
Most surveys are biased and inaccurate – customers who voluntarily fill out such surveys usually do so for their own reasons. They are often influenced by their mood and therefore the results are unreliable. For example, if a customer has had a negative experience in general, they are more likely to rate everything bad, while the reverse happens with a customer who has had a positive experience.
Not even the internal customer service assessments by the staff fail to identify the key issues. The staff have a trained eye and are emotionally attached to the store.
Investigations must therefore be action-oriented. In fact, customer feedback cards that rate satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 10 don’t give you all the insights you can use.
Mystery Shopping Benefits for your company
Results and Re-measurements
The benefits will depend on the information about your company’s service offering. These are extremely powerful. Often that’s all it takes to drive change. Once you have used mystery shopping to identify some key areas for improvement, the next step is to use this information to implement education, training, or policies to transform those areas.
Set goals with your staff and keep them active in the mystery shopping process
Keep staff active throughout the mystery shopping process. Using the results, collaborate with staff to set goals or create incentives if they don’t already exist. Once staff gets reliable answers from a customer, it will be much easier for them to correct the problems of their actions day in and day out.
Re-measurement each time you have implemented changes
The first benefits will be reflected in your repeat customers, who may have already started noticing changes and as a result, hopefully, your sales will have started to grow. By carrying out further assessments, mystery shopping will confirm that education and training have had a positive effect on staff and that any operational problems have been resolved.
Evaluations should ideally be conducted on a monthly basis, although budgets may only allow quarterly evaluations.
Monthly assessments allow stores to:
– Building trends
– Not being swayed by a “rogue result”
– Having time to correct any problems before the next mystery shopping cycle
– Rewarding staff more frequently
The investigation of the Mystery Client
The Mystery Client gives a different and detailed evaluation of your service
Mystery Shopping was designed to provide feedback from someone who matters – a customer, while eliminating problems with other customer service ratings.
Mystery Shopping surveys are conducted by a mystery client, who is trained by us to observe and evaluate certain characteristics of your service from the outside. Mystery clients go to your store and experience the service just like a regular customer, but to give detailed feedback in those specific areas that have been proven to influence sales. The questionnaires are filled in objectively and report only the facts about your company and its level of service.
The result is that you get accurate, structured and detailed information about your service, highlighting where opportunities exist for increased sales.
Ultimately, Mystery Client monitoring acts as a support to your business strategies in order to:
– Improve the performance of your store;
– Improve the relationship with the customer;
– Improve information on what the customer expects from your store;
– Improve the quality of the service provided;
– Improve the analysis of competing points of sale.