Mystery shopping companies and clients love to see accurate, detailed reports that give them a true picture of what happened during your visit. However, there is such a thing as “too much information” in a shop report.
Each client has different needs when if comes to mystery shopping reports. Some want to know every single thing that happened, while others want more of an overview. Or perhaps they are looking for information regarding a specific aspect of the shop.
You can get an idea of how much detail a client wants, and the type of information they are looking for, by carefully reading the assignment guidelines.
The report form also offers clues. If there is a limit on the number of words or characters you may use in your comments, that is a sign that they want high-level information and not every single detail.
Sample reports show you the level of detail the client expects. Does the sample mystery shopper report include several direct quotes from employees? Are there lots of details about timings? Although you should never copy anything from a sample report, use it as a model for your report.
You may also receive emails or other communications with special instructions. For example, the client may be concerned that employees are not upselling and they want your report to give specific information about what, if anything, the employee said as an upsell. Or they may have concerns about cleanliness or some other aspect of the customer experience that they want additional details about.
Do not tell them what they already know. For example, Sally’s Boutique knows that they are, “a high-end store, selling a variety of designer fashions for women.” Including that in your report is not useful. Likewise, it is usually not necessary to describe where they are located or the decor.
Do not include your opinions, unless they are requested. Saying that the prices are too high, or there was a poor selection of merchandise, is your opinion. Leave it out, unless they specifically ask for it.
In general, if there is not a specific place in the report to mention something, it probably does not belong in the report. If you believe it is important, you may wish to send an email to your scheduler with the information. Some companies include a “notes” area in the report form where you can leave notes to the editor. You may use that section to provide information that doesn’t fit elsewhere in the report.