Men, how did you get into mystery shopping?

To my knowledge, most mystery shoppers are women. I have seen several men posting and commenting on the Forum recently. So I'm curious--Men, how did you become aware of mystery shopping and what got you into it?

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I got tired of cutting my own hair, so I wanted to find ways around just paying for a haircut. I found mysteryshopping doing my own research and tried it out. Got paid, so I tried a restaurant assignment. Got paid again. So I began venturing and expanded from there.

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 27 year old male and willing to travel! Badged for Denver International Airport.
I think you might be surprised by the number of men on this forum. You cannot tell by the user names. We had sort of a roll call a couple of years ago. There were way more than several at that time. Most are still here.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
My wife developed some health issues that prevented her from working and it's hard to support a family of four with a teaching salary. I started shopping as it allowed me to keep really flexible hours so I could work full time during vacations and part time during the school year, still attending all of my kids activities, etc. I read about it in a Forbes magazine article and looked into it. I did a couple of shops with Jancyn, realized it worked. They referred me to iSS, which referred me here. Here, I started reading about all sorts of other companies.... I earned over $1,000 in my second full month (while working full time) and haven't looked back.
I never thought of it as mostly male or female thing.

It was more of a way to make some money situation as far as I'm cincerned.
I take care of my mother, so I had to quit working and needed something to keep me busy. In a past life I was shopped often and thought I would give it a try.
I was an at-home dad for nearly 15 years. For the last few I tried to figure out not only what I wanted to do when I grow up, but what makes sense for my family situation. Someone said "You should try mystery shopping. It's super flexible. Here's the website for Bestmark."
And the rest was history.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
My mom was a shopper when I was young. I remembered that she would do the drive-through shops at Jack in the Box and would let me run the stopwatch. It was way more fun as a kid :^/

When I got out of school and was broke, and search engines for the internet first appeared, I looked up mystery shopping. I think it was before Google. I probably used Alta Vista or the AOL search....

I don't think my mom knew about fine dining or hotel shops. She's amazed that I continue to shop. I hired her when I was a scheduler and realized my mom wasn't the best shopper, though sad smiley
@SteveSoCal wrote:



Haha




I don't think my mom knew about fine dining or hotel shops. She's amazed that I continue to shop. I hired her when I was a scheduler and realized my mom wasn't the best shopper, though sad smiley


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/03/2017 05:20PM by teriraia.
Ha! I considered trying to recruit a few of my family members before, but then I thought about it and decided... they aren't the best fit. :p

Scheduler and Editor for Shoppers' View
www.shoppersview.com
christinew@shoppersview.com
616-608-1594
When I found out Chris C. wasn't a woman, I realized there are many more men on here than I could imagine.
Hope your o.k. Chris, haven't seen you here for awhile. I hadn't heard of shopping for money until I started 11 year ago,imagine getting paid to eat, welcome men, whoever you are....

When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping....
Yet almost all MSCs that show an image of a "Mystery shopper" on their website show women!

sestrahelena
I can’t remember how I got into shopping. It’s been four years and I haven’t looked back. The last year I have honed my negotiating skills and have only completed shops with significant bonuses. In November I completed a last minute grocery shop that starts at reimbursement only for $100 plus $10.50 in reimbursement. It’s in a very, very bad part of town.

Funny you mention this topic, a scheduler recently told me that I was one of the few male shoppers that she relies on.
Usually, men I have known, hate shopping, it seems to be a woman's thing...but getting paid, well, that's another thing.

When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping....
I hate shopping. OTOH, my former fiance loved it and could spend a lot of time at the mall. One of the many ways we were mismatched.

To me there are so many aspects to mystery shopping other than just retail. I rarely take a retail shop yet stay really busy.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/03/2017 11:30PM by LisaSTL.
I find this topic interesting as I thought most shoppers were women with only a few men. I admit though that’s probably because my husband and my dad both hate any kind of shopping unless it’s something they absolutely have to have so that’s probably why I thought that. My husband happily goes along to my dining shops and sometimes he is a trooper and goes out with me to a post office shop or something if he wants me to go somewhere with him and I have a shop to do. My husband told me he would never do MS but just because his grammar/spelling isn’t the greatest. It’s great to see so many guys mystery shop as well!
IMO, "mystery shopping" is a huge misnomer. MSing is about evaluating the customer experience, the quality of service, and the environment. It involves reporting on experiences at lots of places both men and women frequent in the course of a normal day, week, or month. Even retail shops aren't so much about shopping. You are generally required to purchase something nominal or to purchase and return something more significant, in order to evaluate the experience. The skills required mirror those of a P.I., which is why a P.I. permit is required for shoppers in NV.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/04/2017 12:14AM by MSF.
@MSF wrote:

IMO, "mystery shopping" is a huge misnomer. MSing is about evaluating the customer experience, the quality of service, and the environment. It involves reporting on experiences at lots of places both men and women frequent in the course of a normal day, week, or month. Even retail shops aren't so much about shopping. You are generally required to purchase something nominal or to purchase and return something more significant, in order to evaluate the experience. The skills required mirror those of a P.I., which is why a P.I. permit is required for shoppers in NV.

There's nothing I despise about this business as much as the term "mystery shopping" or "secret shopping."
It has scammy connotations and sounds like a fake job that people do for free lunch at McDonalds.
I wish we could all agree on a more accurate term for those of us that do more than $6 purchase and return jobs at Bob's Stores.
I don't SHOP at resorts and it's no MYSTERY when I walk into a gas station wearing a hi-vis vest.
If we can do something to make people take this industry seriously, we really should. It would start with giving it a less childish name.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
@Hoju wrote:

@MSF wrote:

IMO, "mystery shopping" is a huge misnomer. MSing is about evaluating the customer experience, the quality of service, and the environment. It involves reporting on experiences at lots of places both men and women frequent in the course of a normal day, week, or month. Even retail shops aren't so much about shopping. You are generally required to purchase something nominal or to purchase and return something more significant, in order to evaluate the experience. The skills required mirror those of a P.I., which is why a P.I. permit is required for shoppers in NV.

There's nothing I despise about this business as much as the term "mystery shopping" or "secret shopping."
It has scammy connotations and sounds like a fake job that people do for free lunch at McDonalds.
I wish we could all agree on a more accurate term for those of us that do more than $6 purchase and return jobs at Bob's Stores.
I don't SHOP at resorts and it's no MYSTERY when I walk into a gas station wearing a hi-vis vest.
If we can do something to make people take this industry seriously, we really should. It would start with giving it a less childish name.

When I worked Security, they always complained about being called “Security Guards” and not “Security Officers”. It didn’t matter to me as long as I got paid.
Word. It didn't matter to me what one calls this because I ate well and got paid a bit. Kinda helped a lot when I took time off to finish my bachelors back in '08 and also during the year I took off to do my masters degree. Another unforseen effect was being the guy with the cool job installing standees. The gals at the theaters loved me. Sigh.

I did do a shop for RBG Friday night, but that one was a PITA, because I really didn't want to be out after my massage with an early wakeup for inventorya at work yesterday morning...

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/04/2017 01:41AM by AlfredB1979.
I wanted to raise money to send a friend to school. So I started to Uber and thought there had to be a way to maximize my downtime waiting in parking lots for my next ride. Lead to FA app, then got the itch to search for more and found MF then this website that led me to be able to meet my goal for my friend. So thanks everyone here for the great insight and research. Uber went to the side and it's full blown shopping after my regular job.

Also now that I'm in this game - I WILL NEVER again buy toilet paper or razors without being reimbursed or pay for pizza or burgers! Also the FTD flowers get me tons of points with the ladies.
Jas is correct.
Chris and I actually will be meeting up later this month.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
I now know Chris C. is a woman, but in the beginning when she kept liking everything I was writing, i thought she was a he because of the name. Say hi for me, and is she still shopping?

When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping....
Every conference I've been too has been 90% women. I got my significant other into shopping.

Edited to add....at the last IMSC conference there were 10-15 men, maybe. A lady sitting at our table the first day, on the other side of my partner, offered him her hotel room number while I was sitting there (my chair was facing the speaker). I couldn't believe the audacity or the desperation. Another lady kept pestering him and boldly asked me in the restroom if I was with him. WTF - some woman apparently come to the conferences shopping for men.

Shopping up and down the Colorado Rocky Mountain front range.


Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/04/2017 07:42PM by COMystery.
When we'd go shopping on Saturday, my ex didn't have patience for looking through sales, or help, would see what he liked and buy it, inn and out.....(not the burger). I'd look on every sale rack My other ex in Sarasota, Fl. would come with me and go to the Deli in the mall, get a bagel and the newspaper (always the New York Times)
and I'd get him when I was done.....to me woman are the shoppers, but there are three here that I know are great shoppers, maybe not for clothes, but kudo's Steve, BGriff, Eric in Tampa and Rolfwofl...smiling smiley

When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping....
I fully agree with Hoju on this. I am not a mystery shopper and I don't work for mystery shopping companies. I am a business inspector and represent market research companies.

In my past life I was a manufacturer's representative for 35+ years before retiring. My retirement lasted a few months until I missed being active and productive so I started looking for work at home ideas. I found a lot of gimmicks but nothing of interest. During my research I found "mystery shopping" and, with trepidation, decided to give it a shot. My wife's comment when I received my first check was "well at least they pay". I really don't consider myself a mystery shopper as, like many men, I don't particularly like shopping. I have found my niche in banks and gas stations and in neither case do I come out with toilet paper, a hamburger or something I have to return later.

My guess, and this is strictly speculation based on the forum members I have been able to identify as male or female, is that 75% of the shoppers are female.
I can guarantee bgriffin and Eric have both completed clothing shops and a lot of them. There are many male forum members who have not responded to this thread along with many who no longer participate in the forum.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
A significant number of men are MSers (It was over 40% in my database when I was scheduling). I enjoy shopping for clothes. I've also been the primary cook in most of my relationships.

Many of the most successful chefs, fashion designers and even the majority of MSC owners are men. All of that may go against a traditional model of gender roles, so I think it's time we do away with gender stereotypes.

As far as the attendance at the IMSC event, you could probably find other reasons why it may have been more appealing to women than the gender demographics of MSers.
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