When and How to Use Quotations in Mystery Shop Reports


One of the goals you should have when writing mystery shop reports is to help those who read the report to feel that they were there, experiencing what you experienced during the shop. Directly quoting what employees said to you during a mystery shop visit is one of the things that helps the mystery shopping company and the client imagine what your visit was really like. But quotations can be overused. Let’s look at when you would use quotations and {Read More}

Funny Mystery Shopper Comments


Sometimes what we write doesn’t effectively communicate what we mean. Mystery shopping company Confero offers a blog post about funny comments on mystery shop reports that includes this gem: “There were no baggers helping the cashier so I bagged myself.” Okay, we know what the shopper meant, but her words paint another picture entirely. Misspellings, misplaced modifiers and other writing errors can mean that a mystery shopper’s report does not say exactly what the shopper thinks it does, and those {Read More}

Word Lists for Mystery Shop Reports


I get a lot of requests for lists of words secret shoppers can use in their reports. The requests usually go something like this: It is hard to make my reports unique. There are only so many ways I know to say what happened during a mystery shop. Do you have a list of words I can use to make my reports more interesting? There is a very simple way to make your reports interesting and unique and it doesn’t {Read More}

Writing Great Mystery Shop Reports


Do you struggle when writing your mystery shop reports? Does it take much longer than you think it should to complete a report? Do you often get questions about your reports from editors, or even have your reports rejected? I have just released a new DVD that can help. It is 71 minutes of great ideas and tips to help you write better reports in less time. When you write better reports, you can qualify for more and better mystery {Read More}

Mystery Shopper Reports and the Perfect 10


When mystery shoppers submit reports to mystery shopping companies, they are reviewed by editors. The editors not only make sure the reports are perfect before releasing them to the clients, they may also score the mystery shopper. Most companies that rate or grade secret shoppers use a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is outstanding and 1 is for shoppers who ought to start thinking about a new profession. If you want to be a top-rated shopper, there are {Read More}

Words That Should Never Be in Your Mystery Shop Reports


When writing mystery shop reports, there are some words and phrases that are like kryptonite to editors. Although each situation is unique, and there may be times when it is appropriate to use one or more of these words and phrases, you should generally avoid them. Always and Never. These are extreme words that are probably not true. They may cause clients to question the report if they are used in a negative way (e.g., “Sally never smiled.”) Appeared and {Read More}

Seven Ways to Write Mystery Shop Reports Faster


The most time-consuming part of most mystery shops is writing the reports. Saving time on report writing (while still doing a great job, of course) means that you make more money in less time. Here are seven things you can do to write great mystery shop reports in less time. Assemble everything you will need to do the report before you sit down at the computer. Get receipts, notes, business cards, guidelines, etc. together in one place so you do {Read More}

Make Your Mystery Shop Reports Unique


Do you like to get form letters? You know, those letters where they try to sound personal, but you can tell the same letter went to thousands of other people? Most people hate form letters; however, many mystery shoppers like to submit “form reports.” By that I mean reports that all read alike, and appear that they could be submitted for just about any shop assignment by changing a few details. Each mystery shop experience is unique, and your reports {Read More}

Why Was Your Report Rejected?


This is a guest post from C. McDaniel of Spot Check Services Ltd. You’ve just completed and submitted your shop… now you get a notice saying your report has been REJECTED… WHY did it happen to YOU? Everyone runs the risk of making a mistake at some point during their shop, whether you’re a newbie, or the most seasoned mystery shopper. Depending on the nature of your error, it can be nothing more than an email informing you of your {Read More}

When to Use ‘A’ and When to Use ‘An’


Incorrect usage of ‘a’ and ‘an’ is one of the things that will mark you as a poor writer. Although some uses are obvious to most native English speakers, there are (as with so many other grammar rules) exceptions to the usual rules. Most people know to use ‘a’ before a word beginning with a consonant and ‘an’ before a word beginning with a vowel: The sandwich was served with a salad and an apple. Simple, right? Most of the {Read More}