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 Lower shop fees debate - Low Paying Shops
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.Kenthe Sub
Inactive

WI
USA
658 Posts

Posted - 07/19/2005 :  3:41:43 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by AnneZ

You might want to edit your post there, Kris.

AnneZ,

Kris did not link the name of the retailer with the name of the company that shops this retailer. Thus, there is no issue with respect to her ICA.

I happen to know which co. handles KMart and I'm sure many others do but if Kris had posted, for example, Costco, I wouldn't have a clue and would have to check the lists of co.'s that are on Volition and elsewhere to make the link.
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KrisM
Inactive

USA
297 Posts

Posted - 07/19/2005 :  5:01:07 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
AnneZ
What's your issue?
I did not state which company I do KMart for...different companies do the same stores in different parts of the country, so I may do KMart for someone else, you never know...

Also, so a $5 shop may be $4 next month...same goes for a $30 shop. It could be only $25 next month.

I don't know why everyone is always whining about the fees. Just thank your lucky stars that this business is here for you to make income from in the first place.

I know I'm just asking for a bunch of butt chewing, I've been in the management part of retail for too long. Lowering shop fees is the same as cutting payroll in my stores or scheduling the lower waged employees to save on expenses. Is it right, heck no. It's also the same as raising shampoo or infant formula to get more money from the consumers. It's a fact of life in business.
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Barbara N.CA
Star Contributor

San Francisco, CA
USA
2397 Posts

Posted - 07/19/2005 :  5:20:24 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
It's a violation of most ICA's I know to disclose the shop fee for a specific client. That's confidential information.

It also doesn't help shopper fees to tell the world Store X shops pay $Y. Guess what? An MSP that wants the Store X account may now budget $(Y-1) for shopper fee to try to win the account.

Barbara
MSPA Gold Shopper since June, 2003.
MSPA 2005 "Go To" Shopper
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AnneZ
Valued Contributor

Warrenton, VA
USA
127 Posts

Posted - 07/19/2005 :  5:47:09 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
What Barbara said.

Luckily, I shop for fun. I'm not dependent on it for income. If I was, I certainly would consider shooting myself in the foot by taking micro fees to be a bad thing. But that's just me.

Y'all enjoy your shopping, whatever the fees are!!

AnneZ MSPA Silver certification
shopping Northern Virginia and military bases
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Roswitha
Star Contributor

Pinellas Park, FL
USA
445 Posts

Posted - 07/19/2005 :  8:02:31 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
AnneZ:
quote:
Y'all enjoy your shopping, whatever the fees are!!
Really?!!!

Low fees are here because there are shoppers desperate or foolish enough to take them. I cannot find fault with either.

Companies may have made a business decision to keep more profit for themselves or possibly be hard pressed to compete or survive.

This appears to be an industry that is undergoing massive change in the way business is conducted - on both sides of the fence as evidenced by this and other threads like it.

Will my decision to hit the delete button along with many of you stem the tide of low fee shops? Not as long as there are plenty of desperate and foolish shoppers to take these shops.

We live in the land of capitalism and are therefore subject to the laws of supply and demand.

That is my
In the meantime I take the assignments that I like and make financial sense to me.

Happy and prosperous shopping to all of us.

Roswitha
MSPA Gold Shopping sunny Florida Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Largo .....
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MarcyJ
Contributor

USA
65 Posts

Posted - 07/20/2005 :  05:50:55 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I've decided that the majority of shops are low fee, and not worth my time. That is why I only take 3 to 4 per month that I actually enjoy doing. It's a personal decision for everyone.
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Maureen5360
Star Contributor

USA
268 Posts

Posted - 07/20/2005 :  06:22:05 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
As a newcomer to this board I've already learned much. I've shopped for 11 years now and have never received a bonus of any kind from any of the companies I've worked for, nor have I heard of a silver certification.

The companies I've worked for never paid more than $10 for a shop, with only two exceptions in that time period.

I learned something interesting however, from working in marketing research for awhile for a company that does mall-intercept surveys as well as have a mystery shopping component to their operation. It was a company owned by a husband and wife and it was the guy's proud boast that he would skim a bit off the incoming fees that were earmarked to pay his shoppers and the mall survey respondants. No matter what a survey's incentive fee was, he would only pay out $5, a shopper working for them would get no more than $7-10 to do a shop, despite $15-20 being allocated for the shopper.

Other than quitting in droves, what can a shopper do to combat unscrupulous company owners? I fully realize that there are good and honest companies out there, but I believe the bad apples can give the whole industry a bad name.
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EliseWeav
Star Contributor

Boston, MA
USA
528 Posts

Posted - 07/20/2005 :  09:34:42 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
It also doesn't help shopper fees to tell the world Store X shops pay $Y. Guess what? An MSP that wants the Store X account may now budget $(Y-1) for shopper fee to try to win the account.
And then what? The KMart shops are $4? My guess would be more people would just hit delete, not scramble to get them from the new company.

Elise
Boston area, especially North Shore. Silver certified and shopping since 2004.
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RitaG
Valued Contributor

West Bloomfield, MI
USA
110 Posts

Posted - 07/20/2005 :  12:54:49 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Here are my two cents. I think that companies should be able to set their own fees for independent contractors. We on the other hand are free to decide is worth it or not. I am sure that "you get what you pay for" The restaraunt report that pays $100 is going to be a lot more detailed then the one that pays $35.

I take the $35 reimbursement shops sometimes because these are places I would normally pay for anyways and I have fun doing them. I am sure the same logic can be used for $5 and under shops. Some people treat this as a hobby and if they are willing to do whats required more power to them.

Personally I cant afford to do the lower fee shops and just avoid them.

SILVER SHOPPPER-Shopping Metro-Detroit including West Bloomfield, Farmington Hills, Novi, Southfield and Troy
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AnneZ
Valued Contributor

Warrenton, VA
USA
127 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2005 :  08:14:46 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
To prove my point:

We discussed a furniture shop that was being offered a few days ago for $5. No one took the job here. Today I am doing it for $30.

The notoriously low 2 dept electronics shop is $24, but I don't have time to go there today.

I rest my case.

AnneZ MSPA Silver certification
shopping Northern Virginia and military bases
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CarmenBolin
Valued Contributor

Camarillo, CA
USA
199 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2005 :  09:20:21 AM  Send CarmenBolin an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
AnneZ,

I just keep waiting for the two department shops to hit $50... then I am all over it!

MSPA Gold Certified July 2005
Shopping & Merchandising Ventura, Santa Barbara, and Los Angeles Counties
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GLabow464
Valued Contributor

Springfield, PA
USA
112 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2005 :  09:20:39 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
This really has me stirred up. Being new, I took any shops I could. I learned what was involved, and am getting better at doing all types of shops. My analysis is that based on time spent all the shops I take must be at least minimum wage (varies from state to state, I think), is enjoyable for me, and convenient. I have only done one shop so far that wasn't convenient, and that was because the scheduler asked me specifically to do it.
What I have made on MSing is not trivial, but it isn't what I would make on my regular job. But I only work parttime anyway, so the MSing is all extra.
I really like it, so I guess I'm one of the shoppers who will do low fee shops, but only down to my minimum wage.
Like they say, if you don't like the fee, don't take the shop.

Gary - Silver gjs9lz
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KaySFbay
Star Contributor

Redwood City, California
USA
316 Posts

Posted - 07/22/2005 :  7:08:55 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by AnneZ

To prove my point:

We discussed a furniture shop that was being offered a few days ago for $5. No one took the job here. Today I am doing it for $30.



And of course that means that other shoppers were outraged at the $5 fee and declined to take it.

It couldn't possibly mean that it's the middle of summer and lots of people are on vacation.

quote:

The notoriously low 2 dept electronics shop is $24, but I don't have time to go there today.


They'd have to pay me a lot more than $24 to work for them again.

Kay
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AnneZ
Valued Contributor

Warrenton, VA
USA
127 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2005 :  07:50:14 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
No, Kay, that means if MS Company XYZ throws chicken feed and all the little chickens DON'T stumble over each other trying to snap it up (for whatever their reasons may be), XYZ will throw out more. Pretty simple really....

AnneZ MSPA Silver certification
shopping Northern Virginia and military bases
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Maureen5360
Star Contributor

USA
268 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2005 :  07:54:25 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Sometimes a hungry chicken has to take what feed he can get.
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Nora
Star Contributor

PA
USA
6341 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2005 :  07:56:33 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
This industry, as much as any other, feeds on supply and demand.More shoppers than shops means that fees are prone to decline in response.
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LindJorg
Star Contributor

Tacoma, WA
USA
921 Posts

Posted - 07/23/2005 :  9:04:33 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I believe shop fees will not be increased solely based on shoppers not taking the shops.( Many veteran shoppers state that fees have been dropping which I assume is linked to the fact there are soooo many more shoppers now) Many MS companies just try to recruit more shoppers to hopefully get the shops done at the lower fee.
Also, a lot of those bonus shops are based on location....i.e. Eastern Washington is lacking in shoppers....most the jobs over there are consistently bonused......not because they are undesirable shops BUT because they just can't recruit enough shoppers. (I can state this easily because some of those shops are snapped up here in Western Washington immediately!!)

Some clients are big enough and solid enough to pay more for reports than others and MS companies will pay us higher fees for those clients. Of course, the MS companies are in business to make money so the lower the shop fee for us the more money for them. I find the higher quality MS companies do pay well and timely. Also these high quality MS companies DO NOT saturate the area with lots of shoppers and are loyal to the ones they have.
After shopping a while........you really can decide what is worth your while AND you can weed out the good MS companies and the not so good ones.

I am not interested in a $25 shop fee if the report and visit is going to take 2-3 hours of my time plus the audit form is 15 pages long and frustrating to complete. I will do a $12 shop fee when the shop takes 10-15 minutes and I spend maybe 5 minutes inputting it and the form is 2 pages and easy to complete. $12 for 30 minutes work is worth it to me. $25 for 2-3 hours work is not. Also, if I am doing restaurant shops (reimbursement), I view them differently as I received a meal for the time I had to spend to input the audit soooo if I spend 30 minutes to an hour inputting but received dinner for me and my husband,,,it is worth it to me.
I also consider the MS companies and how timely they pay.....$25 owed to me for 2-3 months....instead of $12 received in 30 days!!! HMMM.......which do I want?? I don't think shoppers should have to chase after their pay. So I am getting very picky about shops for companies that I have to consistently contact about my pay. This of course takes up my time and I just don't think it is worth it. Because of this, a couple of companies I no longer shop for.

It will always be a personal decision what shops you take. And yes, new shoppers have to experiment to see what they do and don't like and just as important.. what is worth their time. Shops I did 6 months ago,,,now I choose not to......because I have decided they are not worth it.

No one can tell another shopper what shop IS or IS not worth it. This is something you have to learn and decide yourself.

That is what makes being an Independent Contractor so wonderful!!!

No one can tell you what jobs you can do or can't do!!! Just my

Linda
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LAlao
Star Contributor

LA
USA
317 Posts

Posted - 02/19/2006 :  04:19:35 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Hard to choose which thread to go with here because there are others that apply as well but here goes. What's the deal with these "chances to win" extra money, the more shops you take? It's mean! I got three emails just this week from a company that's offering "more chances to win" their monthly sweepstakes if I take more shops. WHAT? Why not just take all that spare cash that they're giving away and divide it among us to make a more reasonable shop fee? Am I missing something here? Wouldn't most of us prefer to see a few more dollars on the job offer rather than take a (slim) "chance"? It's insulting because:
A. I already hit my limit for that company and CAN'T take more shops.
B. Someone's going to get $100 dollars for a shop that I did for less than $10.
C. The reward is based solely on chance, not the merit of the shopper or quality of the report.
D. It's just plain cheesy
There are several MS companies that have been doing this sweepstakes thing and I feel that it is unfair to all shoppers. I, personally, do not regard it as an incentive, just a disappointment. BTW, did I mention I thinks its dumb?
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JanB27
Star Contributor

OH
USA
4831 Posts

Posted - 02/19/2006 :  04:42:48 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Linda, I have received those messages,too, and I just ignore them, because with a full-time job and the driving required it wouldn't work for me. However, now that you have raised the issue, I have to agree with you. Just raise the pay on the jobs that are left. It must work, though, as it seems to get the shops done.

Jan
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.Janet Sue
Contributor

Bayside, NY
USA
99 Posts

Posted - 02/19/2006 :  08:33:30 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
For those who are worried about an MS company finding out how much their competition pays for a certain shop if that payment info is
posted here, be realistic. They do not need to come to Volition for that information. I am sure that the potential client would tell them how much they pay for a shop. Anyone who wants to do so can sign up to be a mystery shopper. Most MS companies probably have at least one employee signed up in most competitors databases.

Janet Sue
Silver Certified.
Shopping-Queens and New York City
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