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Why Your Online Store Needs a Mystery Shopper

Congratulations! You’ve entered the world of online retailing — there’s great success to be found here.

But they don’t call it the World WIDE Web for nothing, though. There’s so much competition out there for your consumer’s e-retail dollars! It’s easy for people to compare prices online now, and Internet users are finicky, too. If they have issues on your website, they’ll move on to another one so quickly it’ll make your head spin. If you can offer the right products at competitive prices — and create a good user experience to get your customers through the ordering and payment process — you’ll have it made. But how can you be sure you’re doing all these things the best you can? You’re already devoting so much bandwidth to creating your site, balancing the books and managing the other everyday aspects of your business; maybe it’s time to bring in a mystery shopper to check things out!

That’s right, mystery shopping isn’t just for the brick-and-mortars anymore. You can enlist these trained consumers to go to your website and simulate an ordinary customer’s experience — only they’ll have a list of criteria and points to look for throughout their shopping and purchasing experience that will all go into a report to help you understand what you’re doing right and what could use some work.

Here are a few examples of things mystery shoppers could look for:

  • How well is your site organized? Is the navigation intuitive?
  • Are all items displayed and stocked according to your business’s actual inventory?
  • How do your prices compare to other similar businesses?
  • Is your shopping cart process simple and easy to understand?
  • How is the checkout process? Do you offer integration with PayPal and other online payment services?
  • How long does it take your customer service department to respond to and resolve customer issues?
  • Are users able to contact you easily from the website, both electronically and by telephone and standard mail?

Let a mystery shopper service provide insight into your online shopping experience; they may notice things that you overlooked or give you a few pointers you never even thought about.