Business Overview

Mystery shoppers (sometimes known as secret shoppers or anonymous evaluators) visit different businesses to ensure staff is following protocol. A secret shopper business can greatly increase the level of visibility into the level of quality in any given business, and can even save the company money a lot of hassle and money. For example, if a shopper enters a retail store and has a difficult time receiving service, this issue can be addressed immediately. Or if a young person walks into a bar and isn’t carded, then this could spell huge fines for a business later on down the line.  

Who is this business right for?

Those who have an eye for details will do well in this industry. Owners will also need some experience in sales, as clients will need to be convinced they need these services.

What happens during a typical day at a mystery shopper business?

Owners will need to find and conduct business on a regular basis.

  • Cold call businesses to gain clients
  • Present statistics and past successes to market services
  • Conduct site visits or hire employees to conduct visits
  • Prepare reports for business owners about the details of the visit

What is the target market?

The best clients are owners, CEOs and Presidents with multiple stores or locations. These can be for commercial businesses, healthcare companies, even potentially government services. Any decision-maker or owner who cannot monitor all activity happening under their umbrella is a potential candidate.

How does a mystery shopper business make money?

Mystery shop owners make money by charging clients a set fee for sending out a quality shopper to the site. The secret shopper needs to be able to accurately record the good and bad parts of an interaction with every employee, as well as document other details about the general quality of their time at the location.

What is the growth potential for a mystery shopper business?

There are many potential clients who will need this service, but you may be limited by your geography. For example, if you’re not in a major city, then you may only have so many businesses in the area that require mystery shoppers. The more you can prove you can genuinely strengthen other people’s businesses, the more likely you are to grow. Become reputable enough and you can expand your business to other locations, hiring employees in other parts of the country to conduct site visits.