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 Shops you wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole?
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MrsShort
Member

OH
USA
26 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2015 :  07:06:24 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I just re-signed with a company I haven't shopped for in about 9 years. I was intrigued by the scheduler's email, which said the shop paid $30 to drop off and set up marketing materials. It was close by, so I thought I'd look into it.

My login info didn't work (not unexpectedly), so I had to sign up for a new one - and all the BS that comes with that. I finally got into the system and looked for the certification test that was required.

I'm paraphrasing here, but the language at the start of the test said that you get 2 chances to pass with a 90%, and once you do, you are automatically given an assignment. I wasn't too keen on that, but I kept advancing to start the test. Luckily, the materials and the test were all on one webpage. Turns out, this wasn't the merchandising shop that I thought it was. It was basically a cold call to leave materials. It even gave you script to help you if you couldn't get to the office manager because of the person on the phone.

For $30? A cold sales call? Hell.No.
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Bob Engleman
Star Contributor

Dayton, OH
USA
362 Posts

Posted - 12/11/2015 :  2:24:27 PM  Visit Bob Engleman's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
A new addition.

The chosen shopper must have an annual income of at least $60,000.00, take from 15 to 45 pics, expect 2 hrs. for completion, dress in business casual, have a smart phone or color printer, be at least 25 and have a college level education, but nowhere is the fee stated. I knew, by the fact, it was quite low and I was correct; a flat $20. What actually surprised me was that several had been assigned. It appears the pool of desperate shoppers is both wider and deeper than I imagined.

Bob
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2015 :  6:22:46 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Not necessarily desperate. Maybe just inexperienced.

Jnanne
Silver certified
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Bob Engleman
Star Contributor

Dayton, OH
USA
362 Posts

Posted - 12/13/2015 :  8:43:30 PM  Visit Bob Engleman's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
J,

If one has an annual income of at least $60,00.00 and is a college grad, the issue of working for 2 hrs., which knowing MSCs means 3+, for a gross fee of $20 does not suggest inexperience. Frankly, it's illogical to me that such a scenario would exist, but, as I noted, several of these assignments have been accepted. I, therefore, can only surmise it's desperation.

Bob
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Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
3047 Posts

Posted - 12/14/2015 :  12:57:04 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I was thinking more along the lines of someone who wants to get a foot in the door with a company. Take assignments that will get them to recognize your name and your quality of work. Especially if you are adding it to a route and you are going to be in the area, anyway. Years ago I used to take whatever shops were available at the outlet mall several miles from my home. I figured if I was going there for a couple of shops I might as well add in a few more without increasing the number of miles I needed to drive. Occasionally I would decide that one of the shops wasn't worth the trouble, even if it wasn't going to cost me additional wear on the car or an outlay of cash.

Jnanne
Silver certified
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MicahPage
Star Contributor

Norwalk, CA
USA
283 Posts

Posted - 12/14/2015 :  11:28:26 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
You both have valid points. I have come to realize that everyone has a different value of what their time is worth. For someone that works full-time, to spend their off-time working for much less is illogical. Bob is right logically that a 60K salary (or higher) would not make sense to take a shop for at least 2 hours for $20 pay ($10 per hour at best). But some don't know any better and are willing to take what they can get (at first) just to build a resume.

Being a software engineer with a healthy salary, I found that I used to waste my time doing shops that a another software engineer shopper buddy of mine said I was wasting my time with. It took awhile for me to admit he was right, but now I'm much more selective with shops. I still catch myself sometimes wanting to fall into bad habits of taking lousy shops just because I have some "free time." But that time is NOT free, because it comes at the expense of something else (family/entertainment/relaxation/etc).

I used to make excuses and justifications and not admit how truly long things really take, but I finally admitted I know that it's not just the actual on-site visit, but the prep work (reading guidelines/report) as well as drive to/from in addition to completing the report. A 10 minute on-site shop, is not 10 minutes when you add in all the other stuff. I think if most shoppers truly timed the entire process (of searching for shops available, to doing the visit and reporting the results) many might re-think the shops they do the for the pay they do them at.

I used to also get aggravated that people would continue to take low-paying shops and set the standard low so MSC would not have to increase pay. But now, I'm content because I don't want those shops anyways and if others are keeping themselves so occupied with those, they don't have time for the ones I want making it easier for me to get the better shops.

Micah
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Lori_W41
Apprentice

Indianapolis, IN
USA
4 Posts

Posted - 12/19/2015 :  01:42:21 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I would think that the hotel audit would be trying to get the foot in the door. I have done that with the low-paying furniture shops for the MSC that also has fine dining. However, the hotel shops are not for a MSC that most people would need to get their foot in the door. There are plenty of other low-ball shops available that are easier.

Lori
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SarahLynn
Member

Philadelphia, PA
USA
22 Posts

Posted - 02/15/2016 :  4:45:13 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
The funny thing is, regarding those hotel audits, is that if you make $60,000, no one would be mystery shopping for extra income with that kind of salary.
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CTalbert
Trainee

Lebanon, KY
USA
5 Posts

Posted - 03/13/2016 :  1:24:07 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SarahLynn

The funny thing is, regarding those hotel audits, is that if you make $60,000, no one would be mystery shopping for extra income with that kind of salary.


Camille
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Julie_WA_Writer
Star Contributor

Western, Washington
USA
1877 Posts

Posted - 03/21/2016 :  3:50:45 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
It depends on where you live, Sarah. We're in that income bracket, and hardly living large.

This particular audit, however, isn't overnight. No bennies are included, and I'm hearing from other folks that it's more like 3 hours on site and another 3+ hours to upload photos. It would have to pay at least $100 for me to take it. I think the MSC knows how long they take and are attempting to rope in unsuspecting shoppers. It's too bad because it has colored my opinion of them for other shops.

“Great empires are not maintained by timidity.” Tacitus
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Bob Engleman
Star Contributor

Dayton, OH
USA
362 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2017 :  12:01:59 PM  Visit Bob Engleman's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
Today, I received a notice of a five dollar targeted mattress assignment that required both a business card and a product quote. To put that into perspective, last year I completed such a job for another MSC that paid me $30, EXCEPT it was a non-targeted shop.

Bob
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