The 10 best benefits of Mystery Shopping for your business

1. Increase Efficiency

How? Mystery shopping is employed to monitor and measure service performance and to see if your team meets your standards. At the moment, that responsibility might fall to individual building managers or senior lettings person, but they might be so familiar with their workspace that blind spots have formed. Mystery Shopping lets you get the big picture and the individual specifics from each region, building, or employee. Once you’ve got those reports, you can act on them to increase Efficiency.

2. Helps you to get feedback from the customer's perspective

Customer Journey by MORICON Mystery ShoppersUse mystery shopping programs to get reliable, specific, and quality feedback from a customer point of view. An audit can help highlight particular areas you might want to test, such as experience, satisfaction, brand perception and validating the customer journey.

Regular feedback allows you to fine-tune constantly your operations, amend, change and replace steps in the customer journey that don’t work well or are simply too cumbersome. Reliable and unbiased testers provide all that information, so you can make informed decisions without losing out on potential tenants.

3. Gives you feedback about staff performance

What sales techniques is your team using? Do staff sell actively or passively? How did the employee handle customer questions? Is the staff professional, has product knowledge and cares about the customer? Did the staff acknowledge the customer entering the building by smiling or greeting, or was the customer ignored? And so on!

It shows you how your employees act when managers are not around. Is the building kept clean when no manager is around? Are employees using their mobile phones or eating in front of the customers? Are standards and legal requirements met?

4. Monitors facility conditions as perceived by the customer

Facility and Lobby Audit by Moricon Mystery ShoppersIs the lobby neat? Is the reception area set up as instructed by headquarters? Is the waiting area welcoming, and is the furniture adequate? Mystery shopping programmes are all about answering these questions, specifically aimed at the needs and issues faced by the build to rent market.

The building itself is the “business card” for your operation – a pleasant and well-maintained environment in and around the building suggests managerial competence and care! If you don’t have a welcoming appearance, you create an underlying doubt in your prospective tenant that you are a good manager – first impressions count!

5. Tests the functionality of internal procedures and SOPs

Sometimes, businesses implement top-down standards and policies that may not have the desired effect when they reach the local level.

One of the mystery shopping benefits for build to rent clients is that businesses can use mystery shopping to test how new operational procedures work – or, indeed, if they work at all – on the store level.

Just think of how many emails it takes for your team to process an inquiry from first contact to an actual viewing. How easy is the process for the crucial consideration phase of your potential tenant to interact “live” with your team and hopefully close a deal? How are required facts communicated to the client, how easy and flexible can your timeslots be booked, and much more…

6. Serves as a motivational tool for your employees

Using incentives and reward programs as part of a good mystery shopping program can ensure positive customer relationships on the frontline.

It also is a great way to make your team stand in your customers’ shoes -hearing how they felt and what they experienced during a viewing can be a great motivational tool and bring the customer journey closer to them.

7. Makes your employees aware of what is essential in serving customers

When mystery shoppers come into the building, they act like real customers. Testers ask specific questions and look for certain things in behaviour, products, and the building or flat itself. The simple act of having someone ask those questions – and later, be able to highlight the areas in need of improvement in a follow-up meeting.

8. Benchmark your business: internally, competitively and strategically

Benchmarking helps your business establish an internal or external standard against which to measure itself for continual improvement.

Internal benchmarking allows you to share best practices and results across your company to become more efficient, eliminate waste of time and money and focus on the employee performance or effectiveness of your tools to be successful.

Competitively, audits are about setting specific goals based on what your competitors are doing. By studying the practices and standards of similar businesses to match or, ideally, exceed the industry status quo, your business can gain a competitive edge.

Strategic benchmarking – your business seeks to emulate specific performance standards of world-class organizations. This may involve cross-industry inspiration but allows you to prepare the next step for your business.

Knowing how the competition performs, what they are doing, what behaviour is towards customers, or how their processes support the customer journey can assist you in finding out where you stand and can help you improve!

9. Identifying training needs

All of the above elements can lead to an awareness of areas that need improvement, particularly in staff training. How can we become more efficient? How could the employee be of more help to the customer? Targeted training and repeat auditing then enforce employee integrity and knowledge. 

MORICON Consultants can assist your team with tailored training or a new set of customer-focused operating standards.

10. Improved Customer Retention

Every single one of the mystery shopping benefits leads to the super benefit: Customer acquisition and, ultimately, retention. Every improvement you make in your business resulting from the actionable insights gained from a mystery shopping program leads to better customer service, leading to customers choosing your company over the competition every single time, audit by audit!

As a critical benchmarking criterion, you can compare your ability to retain customers over time with other organisations; how good are you in boosting loyalty and, ultimately, ROI?