Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What is Mystery Shopping?

Well, I realize that many people have not heard of mystery shopping and I thought I should give a little more insight into what this actually is. Mystery shopping, or secret shopping, is when an individual is paid either a fee, or is reimbursed to try a good or service for a company while remaining anonymous. Some mystery shops require that individuals remain anonymous the entire time. Other shops require the mystery shopper to do a reveal at the end. Either way, the mystery shopper is providing a service for a company.

In order to start off mystery shopping, an individual will have to find a company that has listings in his/her area. While it sounds easy enough, often there are individuals who want to charge for this information. I've never purchased any kind of list to find out, I've just done research. I'd advise anyone to avoid mystery shopping lists. From what I've heard, a lot of them have useless information and there are scams out there too.

Be careful for mystery shopping scams. One scam I've read about is when a shopper is sent a bad check and is asked to deposit it into his or her account. The next step is to wire a portion of the check through a wire transfer. Basically, in the end the shopper is tricked out of his or her hard-earned money.

My blog will focus on mystery shops that I've done AND received payment for. I'll also give links to the websites so readers can sign up. I'll list the companies that have the quick and easy shops as well as the more in-depth higher paying shops. You'll be surprised. From my experience, you can make up to $40 dollars an hour if you do a few short quick shops. Sign up to receive updates when I write a new post and feel free to ask questions or post comments about your experiences.

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