Mystery shopping provides extra cash, products and services and so much more. The flexibility of mystery shopping appeals to students, stay at home moms and full time workers that need some supplemental income. Because you are an independent contractor (the boss), you can select shops convenient to your schedule. This flexibility provides freedom not found in traditional paid hourly part time jobs. You can also benefit from products and services that are a part of some shops. How about having the carpet shampooed, plumbing repairs completed, and oil changed in the car. You can find reimbursement for numerous meals ranging from fast food to fine dining and some of these shops include a small fee in addition to the reimbursement. The best cash producers are banks, financial institutions, apartments, assisted living facilities and new car sales. Obviously you would not purchase a car or lease an apartment.
What are some of the other benefits? You can actually have fun doing the job. You may have a shop that sends you to the mall to evaluate a clothing store and make a small purchase. You may evaluate a coffee shop and have the satisfaction of knowing that the cost of the special coffee and pastry will be reimbursed. It tastes even sweeter!
Mystery shopping can be educational. By doing evaluations at financial institutions, you can learn a lot about investments. You can be educated on the differences between fixed annuities and variable annuities and the advantages/disadvantages of mutual funds.
There is the added benefit of doing an evaluation when the customer service was excellent. You know that the employee will be recognized for their good performance. Some shops are actually used as a part of determining bonuses for employees. Its a good feeling to know that you have been a small part of a good thing. On the other hand, if customer service was less than stellar, your evaluation may be a small part of re-training or replacing that employee.
Overall, mystery shopping is a great way to make some money, get some freebies, learn some things and do some good.