I get asked this a lot. Are mystery shopper jobs legitimate?
Yes, there are legitimate mystery shopping jobs out there, but there are also lots of scams. If the job is legitimate, you are not required to deposit a check into your personal bank account and then wire money to somebody or pay an application fee.
Mystery Shopping, What is it?
Sometimes, retailers hire a company to assess service quality in their stores and frequently use mystery shoppers to obtain the information. They assign the mystery shopper to make a specific purchase in a restaurant or store, and then report back on their experience. Usually, the mystery shopper is paid back and keeps the service or product. Occasionally, the mystery shopper is paid a small amount too.
Many specialists in the field regard mystery shopping to be a part-time gig at best. And, they further say that jobs generally are advertised online by merchandising or market research companies.
Never Pay To Be A Mystery Shopper
Crooked promoters make use of emails and newspaper ads to give people the idea that mystery shopping jobs are a stepping stone to higher-paying jobs with renowned companies. They frequently build websites where you are able to “register” to become a mystery shopper, but require you to pay a fee first to ensure a mystery job, for a directory of mystery shopping companies or for information regarding a certification program.
It’s not necessary to pay anybody to enter into the mystery shopping field. The certification they offer is in most cases worthless. Lists of genuine companies hiring mystery shoppers are accessible for free online.
If you try to obtain a refund from the advertisers, you’re out of luck. Either the company won’t phone you back, or if they do return your call, it’s just to give you another pitch.
Never Wire Money
You might have heard somewhere about people who get “hired” to become mystery shoppers, and are notified that their first job is to assess a money transfer service, such as MoneyGram or Western Union. The shopper is given a check and instructed to deposit it into their personal bank account. Then they are told to withdraw cash in the same amount and wire/send it to a third party. The check is bogus.
According to the law, banks are required to make the funds from the check that was deposited accessible within a few days, but discovering a bogus check may take weeks. It might seem like the check has cleared and the money put into the account; however, when the check winds up being bogus, the person who made the check deposit and then wired the money is held accountable for paying the money back to the bank.
NEVER deposit a check from a stranger and then wire back the money to them.
Check out this video:
Tips On Finding Genuine Mystery Shopping Jobs
In order to become a mystery shopper for a genuine company does not cost you anything. Here’s how to do it:
- Investigate mystery shopping. Look at online sites, bookstores or libraries for tips on how to find genuine companies who are hiring mystery shoppers and how to perform the job efficiently.
- Perform an internet search for comments and reviews on mystery shopping companies that are hiring and receiving applications online. Dig deep. Scammers might be paid to post fake positive reviews.
- Keep in mind that genuine companies do not require you to pay them to work for them. They are required to pay you to work for them.
- NEVER send/wire money as part of a mystery shopping job assignment
Check out the Mystery Shopping Providers Association (MSPA) website to search their database of mystery shopper job assignments and find out how to apply for them. The MSPA has free certification programs, but “certification” is not required to look or even apply for jobs in their database.
For the time being, do not do any business with mystery shopping advertisers who:
- Advertise mystery shopping jobs by email or in the “help wanted” section of the newspaper.
- Demand you pay to be “certified.”
- Guarantee a mystery shopping job.
- Charge a fee in order to access mystery shopping jobs.
- Sell directories of businesses that are hiring mystery shoppers.
- Request that you deposit a check into your personal bank account then send/wire a portion of the money to somebody.
The Bottom Line
If you believe you are a victim of a mystery shopping scam or have seen one, you can file a complaint with:
I hope I was able to answer your question, “Are Mystery Shopper Jobs Legitimate?” Have you ever been a victim of a mystery shopping scam? I’d love for you to share your experience in the comments below.
Before you go, I need to ask you a few very important questions …
Are you searching for a GENUINE Online Business Opportunity?
Are you tired of struggling online and want to once and for all succeed by receiving first rate, step-by-step training along with everything you could possibly need to succeed wrapped up in a complete package? …And, did I mention that it’s FREE? Yes, FREE!
Here’s to your success!