Maritz vs Ritter Gas Stations?


I am trying to find out how much different the gas station shops are for each msc? Which shops are easier in terms of time at location and report time? Which pay better? I would really appreciate your help and any other advice that you can provide. Thank You

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On of my signature lines is a quote from Doctor Who, "Answers are easy. It's asking the right question which is hard." Maritz has some gas stations that I won't touch without a bonus because the client requires pictures of every pump, and some locations have 20+ pumps, and those locations are usually by an interstate and will take longer because you have to wait for the pump to be vacant before you take the picture. I've had one of these stations take about 45 minutes because of waiting to get all the pump pictures. Another of their clients is a relatively easy shop that just needs a picture of the pump you used. The balance fall somewhere in between.

Ritter has two clients in my area. For them the requirements are somewhat similar. Once you get into a routine, you can figure 20 minutes or so.

Unfortunately, because of our ICAs, we cannot comment on the specific brands shops on this thread.

Have PV-500 & willing to travel.
"Answers are easy. It's asking the right questions which is hard." (The Fourth Doctor, The Face of Evil, 1977)

"Somedays you're the pigeon, somedays you're the statue.” J. Andrew Taylor

"I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him." Galileo Galilei

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/23/2014 12:47PM by James Bond 007.5.
The problem is which gas station. I do one for Ritter, piece of cake and 1 for Maritz, regularly. One of Maritz can involve a lot of photos, and will only do it when bonused. Of course we can't comment on which stations. In this area, Ritter has 3 different gas shops and Maritz 3, I think.
I love the Maritz shops even though they require each pump to be photographed. For me it is a bit mindless and relaxing which is refreshing after having to remember a million details on mystery shops. I am kicking myself because there were about 8 bonused shops (up to $23 bonus) about 80 minutes from me and I hesitated regarding whether I should spend a day over my weekend to make a route. Now they are gone sad smiley I am now hoping that someone will bail on some as I have had the scheduler call me in the past because someone will do one and then drop the rest. My first one took me an hour on site and at least 2 to sort out photos because I took them on my cellphone and had to email, then crop and resize them. I now can spend 20 minutes on site and take photos with a cheap digital camera that just needs to be uploaded and the whole report is maybe 45 minutes because I'm anal-retentive and rename all photos for clarity. I only started doing this in mid-August and have had no problems so I would think they are beginner friendly.
Why do wait until a pump is vacant to take the picture?
With all the camera equipment you have someone being
there is a non-issue. I've never waited and just take the
photos. No time for waiting.

= + = + = + = + = + = + = + = + = + = + = +
There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots
When you try to please everybody, you end up pleasing nobody
I must have been "lucky" and gotten a couple of anal-retentive editors, Techman. I had comments about the rear bumper of my car being in the picture, even though it wasn't blocking the pump. Since then I've just been cautious about no car being on the side of the pump I'm shooting.

Have PV-500 & willing to travel.
"Answers are easy. It's asking the right questions which is hard." (The Fourth Doctor, The Face of Evil, 1977)

"Somedays you're the pigeon, somedays you're the statue.” J. Andrew Taylor

"I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him." Galileo Galilei
I began following techman01's advice re. "don't wait for the pump" a year and a half ago, and he's saved me many, many hours cumulatively in that time. If a vehicle is still at the pump when I've got everything else I need, I take a photo from each side, angled to show the most pump face possible, and I'm outta there. It's never been rejected.
Long overdue, but thanks, techman!
I don't wait for pumps to clear. I take the best picture I can on the first run through the pumps. If a pump clears after that and it's convenient for me, I'll re-shoot it. I've never lost a shop over a car at a pump.

Mary Davis Nowell. Based close to Fort Worth. Shopping Interstate 20 east and west, Interstate 35 north and south.
I have waited for pumps to clear but perhaps I'll re-think that. I have been of the opinion that it is better to wait a few minutes at the station rather than have to go back and re-shoot the picture.
I do not wait for the pumps to be clear of cars, etc. either and never had a problem. I do not do stations for Ritter, so I cannot comment on those. I do them for Maritz and Market Force.

What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals. -Henry David Thoreau
Real generosity is doing something nice for someone who will never find out. -Frank Clark
I do the gas station shops for Ritter-there are plenty of them. They only pay 9.00-11.00 but there are so many close together I build a route. The schedulers are nice and so are the editors. I like the editors because they give feedback.

I still haven't made it through the Maritz application-it is ridiculous.
I would do the Ritter stations but having read the instructions they are appear to be totally mystery and a lot of photos are required. I can't imagine a scenario where I would be walking around the station taking pictures and not be confronted. Plus I don't think there is a gas re-embursement. Maybe I'm missing something.
Jake, I did one of those Ritter stations and that's what I remember -- no gas, all mystery shop. It's wasn't possible to get the quality pictures they want without being apparent. I don't understand why they don't let you announce yourself and get on with it. I tried to take the pictures without being noticed and the comment I got from Ritter was they looked "all right". All right, then. If I do another one I'll just walk around and take the pictures and if they ask me to leave I will.

Mary Davis Nowell. Based close to Fort Worth. Shopping Interstate 20 east and west, Interstate 35 north and south.
Doing my first for Ritter today. They do provide you with an LOA to use if you are approached.
LauraJeanne Wrote:
> Doing my first for Ritter today. They do provide
> you with an LOA to use if you are approached.

Please let us know how you made out and how you liked it.

LIJake, I already know that the location is permanently closed, so I'm guessing it should be a piece of cake winking smiley
I am a perfectly legal American citizen and a regularly take the $11 Maritz audits if they fall somewhere within a route I am already doing or on my daily commute. I wouldn't do an orphan shop 30 miles from home but those are the ones I tend to see bonused after a couple weeks anyway. I find since the Maritz ones are revealed I can just run around and get my photos quickly instead of spending time and mental energy being sneaky and with practice I can do at least 2 an hour, likely 3 if they are close together. With practice and doing everything in the exact same order (and by using a camera that already shoots in the required pixels) I can do the entire report in under 30 minutes. Is it the best money, no but it is a steady route for me and since I am dependible to never flake or enter reports late I have received calls from a scheduler offering bonused shops before they ever hit the boards. I do these because I find them relaxing (no timings or complicated things to remember) and easy and give me a break from more in depth shops.
I can't speak for everywhere but I think blaming illegal aliens for your not being able to find a bunch of heavily bonused shops may be a stretch. At least if you are shopping in south central PA I'm probably your problem. I would also have to say I am very much in favor of illegal aliens working legally. Their tax money is as good as mine and with an expanded tax base I'm less likely to see an increase in taxes for services that are universal entitlements (schools, etc.)
I take all the Maritz $11 gas shops I can get. The $11 shops in my area also reimburse for $5.00 in gas and $1.00 in a miscellaneous purchase, so I figure it's a $17 shop, not an $11 shop. I don't make dedicated trips out of town to do one shop. I do a string of them in a route in combination with other Maritz station shops and miscellaneous shops from miscellaneous companies. Maritz gas station shops keep me in gas and pay me money besides. I believe I've filled my car up on my dime four times in 2014 and that was due to laziness on my part. No, I don't make a lot of money but I make more than anyone is willing to pay me for a part time flex time job worked at my convenience.

Mary Davis Nowell. Based close to Fort Worth. Shopping Interstate 20 east and west, Interstate 35 north and south.
LIJake, I did twelve for Ritter with the LOA last month. I had to hand over the LOA twice (17%) and both times the shop keeper was cool with it as soon as he saw it. At several of the other locations, store clerks came outside while I was taking photos and didn't say anything about what I was doing. I even had to ask one to step aside so I could take my final photo of that location, still no comment on what I was doing.

If you take any of these shops, just put the LOA in your pocket and get the pictures you need to collect your fee.
Maritz regularly shops six different petroleum vendors and periodically does competitor mystery shops for other brands that are in competition with several of their main clients.

The vendor that requires photos of every dispenser is a relatively new client and I, too, will take all of the photos I can the first time thru and then pop by when cars leave to get the remaining pumps. Or I just take a photo that gets as much of the pump face as possible and just state in the comments that the pump was blocked my entire visit.

Most of the other vendors only require a photo of a regular dispenser and perhaps a diesel dispenser. The vendor that requires two photos of each major aspect does so only to eliminate the need for shoppers to return to the location if the one photo taken is blurry or doesn't show all of the pump elements.

I have been doing it so long, that I can usually do most audits in 20 minutes or less though I get grief from one program if I enter a time less than 30 minutes. But I just add a comment such as "no restroom" or "small footprint" to justify my time.

The issue I have seen with Ritter's shops is that that the photos must be taken covertly. I hate having to do that especially when many of the attendants are constantly looking out the windows at the pump area. Ritter tries to combine the elements of a mystery shop with an audit and the two should always be separate or at least performed in separate stages.

One buzzard to another while circling high overhead (paraphrased), "Patience hell! I want to shop somewhere."
@tanmanlovespool I have no problem with the Ritter shops. I park by a pump, do the mystery shop first and then take any photos outside that need done. By then it is too late for them to matter, you all ready have what needs to be done.
In my opinion, one must take every situation in consideration and then, act accordingly. After performing many of the gas station shops that require a photo of each dispenser (full frontage as required), I've developed different ways to get each photo.
Typically, I have found that every gs has at least one customer who dawdles after filling their tank. It is those to whom I pull my car up to, right behind them with headlights on and await their moving away.
During this time, I am downloading my photos to my laptop and/or filling out my cheatsheet. That is my most non-direct method. Other ways are a bit more time consuming, but do work. I've donned my safety vest and Wellingtons and then walked up to the driver, politiely asking if they could move forward a bit. I suppose that seems official and they do move.

It should be remembered that for these gas station shops, the MS expects the shopper to be at the station a min imum of 20 minutes.

But, if all fails, I simply take the side shot and explain in detail on the report. I'm assuming that if one does not have many of these types of photos, they shall be accepted. If one has them in multiples, then I'm assuming the editors begin to question my explanation. I realise that assumptions can be perilous, yet they seem to hold true.

With regard to the other issue: As an emigre myself, I take no insult of "conservative" or "liberal" talk radio comments of "illegal aliens" and their presumed future work habits as a result of policy changes.

Because, after all, those talk radio "commenters" are voicing opinion, their own opinion and their agendae.
What would you do at a "yellow" gas shop if 2 tractor-trailers pulled up end-to-end in front of where you were trying to take the photo of the whole station at a distance? That happened to me, and I waited.....and waited. An editor emailed me about how much time I spent on the shop. One idea I had was getting in front of the tractor-trailers and taking the scene in several photos that could be pieced together. Signed, Night Owl at 2:02 AM.
I would think you could walk to the other front corner and shoot from there. Or, if required to be from across the street, walk a ways down so you can get the entire scene with the trucks in it.

Have PV-500 & willing to travel.
"Answers are easy. It's asking the right questions which is hard." (The Fourth Doctor, The Face of Evil, 1977)

"Somedays you're the pigeon, somedays you're the statue.” J. Andrew Taylor

"I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him." Galileo Galilei
I have done several of the Ritter shops, so far no one has questioned me, and I have not been discreet while taking the photos.
I always find it funny how so many people talk about illegal immigrants and totally disregard the "illegal" part. Its as if the rest of us should feel guilty for expecting the government to enforce the law.
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