Successful business owners know just how vital it is to provide each and every customer with the best possible shopping experience. After all, retaining customers has been shown to help increase conversion rates and profitability. However, while CEOs know the importance of customer retention, they are not always able to be present at their businesses to ensure that their customers are receiving star treatment and having a smooth shopping experience. This is where mystery shopping comes in handy.
What is mystery shopping?
Mystery shopping is a tool retailers can use to monitor and improve customer service practices for their businesses.
Mystery shopping companies send ordinary people, also known as secret shoppers, into retail stores to buy products or services all while measuring the quality of the customer service they receive.
If a mystery shopper is not greeted when they enter the store, forced to wait in long lines while checking out, or otherwise not provided with adequate service, they will be able to share this information with their mystery shopping company who can then inform their client.
Because employees don’t know when a customer is a secret shopper, this tool allows retailers to get a true sense of how their business is operating on a daily basis, which provides a host of benefits for retailers looking to step up their customer service.
The benefits of mystery shopping
Mystery shopping is one of the best resources that retailers can use to improve and scale their business.
Here are a few advantages that mystery shopping offers retailers:
Mystery shopping allows retailers to receive valuable feedback that they can use to alter their business, training, and customer service practices.
While there are countless methods businesses can use to receive feedback today, there are very few that provide the quick and reliable feedback that businesses need to grow.
For instance, Google reviews can offer helpful insight into company practices, but there are no guarantees that the individuals leaving these reviews actually patronized the business. Likewise, emailed customer surveys can also prove useful, but they tend to produce more emotion-fueled responses and are often completed long after the customer has left the store.
What makes mystery shopping unique is that it allows mystery shoppers to complete digital checklists that address the specific factors that businesses want to measure, requires mystery shoppers to prove that they actually visited the businesses they review, and allows the secret shoppers to share immediate feedback while their shopping experience is fresh on their mind.
Business owners can then use this accurate feedback to make data-driven changes to their business.
Increased customer retention
According to an Annex Cloud Customer Retention Analysis, roughly 65% of revenue businesses earn comes from repeat customers.
Mystery shopping gives business owners an inside look into their company’s practices, allowing them to make any adjustments necessary to provide customer service that encourages repeat business.
If a secret shopper reports health risks or hygiene issues, like employees failing to follow proper COVID-19 protocol or handwashing techniques, businesses can address these concerns before these issues scare off customers. If a secret shopper shares a less than satisfactory customer service experience, businesses can provide additional training or guidelines to help improve their customer service and retain customers.
Improve employee satisfaction
Mystery shopping can prove just as beneficial for increasing employee satisfaction as it does for increasing customer satisfaction.
The growing labor shortage and high levels of employee turnover facing the United States today are not solely because of low pay. Companies are more likely to see employee turnover if they have poor training and onboarding programs, repeat instances of inter-staff conflict, and no opportunities for recognition when they meet or exceed expectations.
Mystery shopping helps address these issues and improve employee retention by showing employers ways they can improve employee training, address performance concerns that lead to conflict, and identify and acknowledge when employees go above and beyond when serving a secret shopper.
Finding the right mystery shopping company
While mystery shopping and retail should go hand-in-hand, not all mystery shopping companies are the same.
To reap the benefits of mystery shopping, businesses need to work with companies like FenixVerify, which offers mystery shopping, digital checklists, customer satisfaction surveys, and employee satisfaction surveys among other resources that help businesses reach their fullest potential.
At FenixVerify, we merge mystery shopping and customer satisfaction surveys, allowing businesses to receive immediate feedback regarding specific touchpoints they want to monitor. In addition to sharing this feedback with businesses, we also share recommendations for improvement that will help businesses advance their customer service experiences.
For reliable, unbiased data that your business can use to increase customer satisfaction and boost profitability, contact us today!