4 tips how to use mystery shopping program as a tool for competitive research

4 tips how to use mystery shopping program as a tool for competitive research

In today’s customer-centric environment, understanding how each of your stores is performing is one thing, but when your biggest competition is upping the game you should be in the know. The concept of survival of the fittest is no more, into existence now, but it is the survival of most informed. What can be a better source of information about your competitor’s latest activities, pricing, in-store layout, customer experience and more than a mystery shopping program as a tool for competitive research?

Tips to utilize the mystery-shopping program as a tool for competitive research

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Frame Mystery Shopping Program to get the big picture:

Normally for mystery shopping program, companies are well aware of the facts that are needed to be surveyed. Companies have that special luxury of knowing what they are looking for.

But when it comes to mystery shopping for competitive research you cannot follow the specifics since you are not much aware about their customer experience strategy.

You should frame your survey metrics based on what are the similar company values that both you and your competitor aim for better customer experience.

You can form an initial list of the strengths and weaknesses you perceive might be at work. Now, based on this list frame your questions to assess the broadest possible array of customer experience strategies.

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What the survey should include getting most from a competitive mystery-shopping:

Utilizing mystery-shopping program for competitor analysis requires a broader approach. This is more because when it comes to understanding what your competitor is trying to achieve through customer experience it requires some professional aid. Your survey should briefly include:

  • Comparison of the product based on what is the overall quality and appearance of their products as compared to yours.
  • Does the layout of their store to reflect an intuitive design plan?
  • How do employees interact with customers? Do they have a passive or an active strategy for assessing customer support?

This will indicate a failure of associated execution, or could perhaps be evidence of executing a different strategy altogether.

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Generate Actionable Results:

The entire effort of conducting mystery shopping for competitive research would be a waste if the program doesn’t include any action.

Firstly, evaluate the survey data effectively with the goal of identifying a competitor’s distinct advantage.

Then, prepare an actionable plan for improvement, including weakness of your competitor as your strength.

Few tips to be considered for your new plan of action:

  • Your new plan of action is based on solving a specific problem or need to which customers are responding positively.
  • Your new plan of action is financially realistic. Also, the behaviour based changes won’t cost anything, for example, saying hello upon entry or a simple thank you at purchase time.

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Mystery Shopping is a better Way to do competitor research:

Competitor research is based mostly on guesswork and analysis through google or other open sources. Taking important decisions based on these research runs the risk of completely missing the target.

On the other hand, performing competitive research through a mystery shopping company erases uncertainty by putting shoppers with an eye for customer experience into a competitor’s physical location. Such skilled shoppers trained to spot the nuances in a company’s approach. The usefulness of your mystery shopping program hinges mostly on the quality of your survey questions. A professional mystery shopping company would be a guide for your research.

iSN Global Solutions is such mystery shopping services provider company. Our well-trained mystery shoppers would make sure to achieve your goal of competitive research in a well-planned way. Our extended services of mystery shopping will convert this data into valuable insight and help you implement actions to stay ahead in today’s competitive world. Find out what your competitors are doing by contacting iSN Global solutions today.

Image credit: alta360research, combiboliersleeds, chiefexecutives, fonolo.

About the Author

Sneha Ajmera

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