Mystery Shopping is something that I had thought of doing seven years ago when I had my first child. I did a lot of looking around and googling and really only found scam articles. That was sad and I left the idea alone. Since I started blogging, I have been open to a whole new world. It is part of the reason that I started this particular blog. Resources are aplenty now with the world at your finger tips. Due diligence should always be first and foremost however. Hopefully, with the help of me, you're going to have an easier and swifter time frame of finding out what's legitimate!
Let's begin, shall we? First, I started at http://www.mspa.com/ and looked for shops within 20 miles of my zip code. This sometimes doesn't work out well for me because I am on Long Island. Connecticut is less than 20 miles north of me, so I get a lot on the list that truly wouldn't count for me. But, if I want anything on the east end of the island, I need to set my parameters that far. I also do like to stay close to home. I had one day where I did my shops in one big circle in between errands. That was truly convenient. Many of these companies get, let's say a chain restaurant. Now, I live within 5 miles of 3 of these restaurants in all directions. So, I apply to the job, and if accepted, I email my scheduler to make it a breakfast/lunch/dinner in one day. Then I schedule a 2 mile walk on my treadmill for the following day in between typing up my reports.
The reports. Some are VERY detail oriented. Others, not so much. One of the shops that I did was mostly yes/no questions and with every "no" that I answered, I had to give a brief sentence on why it was. Others, well, you could write a novel but if it's not to spec (exactly the way they want it) you're not going to get paid. (NOTE TO SELF: when they tell you to read the instructions and sample report, do it) I really could have saved myself a lot of time with the last report, but, I was trying to take shortcuts and , well, it took that much longer.
So, now, on to the websites. Here's what I have so far:
Consumer Perspectives - http://www.customerperspectives.com/ They have paid me within the specified time frame from when I filed my report. Emails were answered promptly.
Insula Research - http://www.insularesearch.com/ Had no problems scheduling double shop in one day and has me scheduled to be paid on the 15th of next month.
I have several applications out still and waiting to hear back. Try these two out for now, if it interests you (and it probably does if you've gotten as far as this sentence!)