Mystery Shopping: Do You Love To Shop Would Like to get Paid to do It

Mystery Shopping

“Get Paid Just to Eat and Shop”

Sounds familiar?

If so, then you have already had an introduction into the world of mystery shopping.

Like completing surveys, being a mystery shopper is a great way to generate extra money while doing something that you love. In fact, many people use mystery shopping to obtain free merchandise while earning a side income.

So what is mystery shopping?

Companies are always concerned with customer service. They can maintain and even increase their revenue by making sure that every visitor is given the best service from their employees. But how do they know if workers are following their procedures when management is not looking?

This is where mystery shopping comes in.

Basically businesses hire people to pretend to be customers, who are known as mystery shoppers. These “customers” then go to the store/restaurant and act like a normal visitor. During their visit, the mystery shopper is required to evaluate the employees on certain criteria.

The best part about being a mystery shopper is that you usually get to keep your purchase. Basically you get paid to shop for items that you need!

If shopping for money sounds like a dream come true, then you should read more about it.



Similar to taking surveys for money, mystery shopping allows you to be flexible with your schedule. You can afford to arrange your work whenever you have time for it. Even if you already have a full-time job, you can shop during nights and weekends.

In addition, most mystery shopping jobs have a completion window of a few days. That means that the job could be completed any time over the course of a few days. Assignments can be worked into your errands or chores. As a result, this is the perfect opportunity if you want to pick up some extra cash.

Large amount of opportunities

When I was a mystery shopper, there was an incredible amount of job opportunities, with a wide range of selections. My options included: eating at restaurants, going to movies, and shopping at local department/grocery stores.

No matter what type of interests you have, you will find assignments that fit your lifestyle. For instance, some of the major industries that need mystery shoppers include the following:

  • Retail Stores
  • Casinos
  • Movie Theaters
  • Fast Foot Establishments
  • Restaurants
  • Grocery Stores
  • Bars
  • Online Stores
  • Sporting Good Shops
  • High-End Clothing Boutiques

Sounds like a wide selection, doesn’t it?


Not a Huge Income

The biggest drawback to mystery shopping is that you won’t become rich doing it.

Although there are numerous people who earn full-time incomes from this profession, there are no mystery shopper millionaires. Like many jobs, there is a limit to the earning potential.

On the other hand, mystery shopping can be an excellent substitute for the standard 9 to 5 job, because you earn a nice amount of money, while still having a flexible schedule.

Timeline till making money

After completing a mystery shopping assignment, you need to complete an evaluation of the company. Once finished, you need to send it to the business via email, fax or mail. They then put you on their schedule for payment.

Most companies pay out every two weeks or once a month. Depending on when your paperwork arrives, it will take anywhere from one week to one month to receive your payment. The average mystery shopper receives payment within two weeks of completion of their first assignment. After completing several assignments, you will receive payments on a more regular basis.


Mystery shopping is similar to taking surveys because there is not a need for a large investment. You can do it for free by spending a few days contacting the thousands of businesses that offer assignments.

Besides spending time tracking down all these companies, you can elect to join a mystery shopper network. These are membership sites that have access to the top companies offering shopping assignments. By joining a network, you can save the time and effort that is required to track down every available opportunity. Almost all of these sites cost less then $50.

One of the better membership sites around is Elite Mystery Shoppers. This network has a selection of over a thousand companies that are offering mystery shopping assignments. Later on, I will discuss this resource in more detail…


Mystery shopping is a great way to generate extra money. As a result, there are a lot of people competing for the best jobs. So this is another business where you need to pay attention to your email and be responsive to the jobs that you want.

Also you should pay attention to the type of person that the company needs for their assignments. Often, businesses are looking for shoppers that fit a certain demographic. By being a member of a small group of the general population, your chances of receiving work will definitely increase.

How to get started

The best way to get started is to check out Elite Mystery Shoppers. This site has one of the largest databases of mystery shopping assignments. With this resource, you can search by city, state or postal code to find available jobs in your location. Some of the available opportunities can pay up to $125 per job.

In addition, Elite Mystery Shoppers provides a lot of extra tools that help you find the best possible mystery shopping jobs. This includes a daily job board, a step-by-step guide, updates from their newsletter, and an assignment organizer log.

If you are interested in the best possible mystery shopping jobs, be sure to check this resource out…

Other Tools

Before, I mentioned that a great way to get the top mystery shopping jobs is to organize your efforts.

To do this, you need to track all the jobs that you have applied for and completed. In addition, create a separate email account that is dedicated to mystery shopper. That way, you can check this one email box a few times a day to look for any new job opportunities. Again, the best free email accounts are:

  • Yahoo
  • Hotmail
  • Gmail


Although mystery shopping might not lead to a full-time income, there are some individuals who use it to generate a great amount of extra cash. So how do you become one of these lucky people?

The trick to successful mystery shopping is to treat your efforts like a real job. In other words, be proactive with assignments. This means checking your email constantly and responding quickly to the ones that interest you.

Besides checking out Elite Mystery Shoppers, you should research companies that aren’t listed in this database. This will help you build a huge collection of businesses that are not available to the general population. If you make it a point to find 3-5 new companies a day, then you will be guaranteed assignments on a regular basis.

If you are interested in mystery shopping as a way to generate extra income, I recommend that you get started today and visit the Elite Mystery Shoppers.

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