Before you ask for a list of the best companies...

If you're just getting started, welcome to the wonderful world of mystery shopping. New shoppers often come to this forum and within a short time of joining, they ask for a list of the best mystery shopping companies (MSCs). They get surprised when they're not immediately provided with what one called "the best of the best of the best." There are multiple reasons.

First of all, many experienced shoppers have spent years researching, tracking and researching some more to compile a list of what they consider the best companies. This list is a valuable resource that they've worked hard to create. If you ask that it be handed to you with no effort on your part, it's the equivalent of you getting out of a taxi at the 25th mile of a marathon and expecting someone who's run the entire race to carry you to the finish.

Second, you must be prepared to work hard and spend a lot of time reading, searching and keeping great records. If you're not prepared to do this, you should know up front that you will not succeed at mystery shopping.

Third, even if a list of the "best" companies was given to you, it wouldn't necessarily be a list of the best companies for you. MSCs can be regional, national or international. They may have no jobs in your area. Shoppers may prefer MSCs with a certain type of client, and you may have no interest in that same client. They may take three months to pay, which some don't mind and others do.

There is a link to a list at the bottom of each forum page that will direct you to legitimate MSCs. Experienced shoppers recommend that you sign up for a minimum of 100 if you want to get a good idea of what types of jobs are out there (and who offers them.)

This forum really has a wealth of knowledge. Please read the New Mystery Shoppers section and use the forum's search function if you have a question, because it probably has already been answered.

Best wishes!

This part is only for the hens who wear comfortable shoes: please add anything I've left out. smiling smiley

Go ahead, ask me to violate an ICA. I won't do it, and the MSCs that read the board will know not to hire you, since you can't be trusted.

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Not that I am new to mystery shopping but I have never commented on this forum before - probably because I can't add anything other than "good point" to the words of wisdom already on here. I just want to chime in and say what a well-worded post that is and it would be great if it could be stickied on the top of some of the forum categories so it won't get lost when other threads get started.

Thanks to all that have freely shared their wisdom (even when it's the same questions over and over) and what they have had for dinner smiling smiley - I love that thread because I really need to improve my eating habits (night worker).

There is no secret, golden list of mystery shopping companies and if someone told you there was, they were pulling your leg.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
None of the contributors are paid for their participation on the forum. We are all mystery shoppers who share our experiences here with each other. We don't mind helping new mystery shoppers, and some posters have spent many unpaid hours presenting detailed how-to information in the New Mystery Shopper area and answering questions. At the bottom of the page, the blue link, is a list of the best companies. All of it is available for you to read FREE. Thanks for commenting that we have done good work. I think the information presented here is amazing - did I mention everything here is FREE? - and we are quite proud of it. I think it covers every area of starting and running a mystery shopping business.

Starting a mystery shopping business is very time-consuming, because it requires many hours of research, reading, and signing up with companies. Anyone starting a business who wants to use the free information on the forum must open the New Mystery Shopper area and read it. They must use the "Search" button to search for specific topics before asking specific questions. A new shopper must apply for whatever companies he wants to work for.

Good luck in your new endeavor.
Even continuing is time-consuming. I've been shopping for 7 years and I am still applying to more companies (already signed up with over 150). Plus, every new client requires reading a novel size manual, plus taking quizzes/tests.

Not my circus - Not my monkeys @(*.*)@

~Polish Proverb~
I went down the big list of Mystery Companies. I'm in the middle of S for my applications. Only spent about 6 hours filling all those out, activating through emails, and doing a quick job board check. ;-)

This thread made me laugh pretty hard BTW

-Inkling grinning smiley

*~Shopping the Orlando area today, tomorrow the world~*
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