Grocery Store Shop

I just started mystery shopping in November. I've had some pretty interesting things come up. Some of the reports are long and cumbersome especially the grocery store shops. Are there any tips to obtaining large amounts of data (at least large to me at this point) and not walk around with a pen/notepad? I got snarky comments from editor about my report.

Thanks for your help.

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Even if you are not required to evaluate the restroom, you can visit the facilities and take notes there on your phone, with pen/paper, or some other method. You can go there more than once, if necessary, to add to your notes.

There are other methods.

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under the trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the blue sky, is by no means waste of time. - John Lubbock, "Recreation," The Use of Life, 1894
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I’ve noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born. - Ronald Reagan
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Look into using the app called ShopIt. It's the best!

Shopping up and down the Colorado Rocky Mountain front range.
Lorijordan What were the snarky comments? Most comments should help you improve your narratives. Only answer questions asked, yes and no answers. Some newbies over detail or under detail the answers. Never give your opinion. We could help you if you give us more detail.
I have a small notepad for my "grocery list", do it with discretion, no one ever said anything, been doing groceries for about three years.... Mine require two sentences, how does one go wrong.

Live consciously....
I do one that requires a lot more than 2 sentences and it requires a lot of names and descriptions and details of the interactions. I need notes!

@Irene_L.A. wrote:

I have a small notepad for my "grocery list", do it with discretion, no one ever said anything, been doing groceries for about three years.... Mine require two sentences, how does one go wrong.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/12/2018 01:46AM by prince.
I text myself too. A scheduler suggested that I text someone else. He said a shopper on a golf shop somehow dropped his phone in the water hazard and lost all his notes.

My previous phone crapped out on a day I was doing several shops. Luckily, I was able to remember everything I had texted up to that point.

I haven't taken his suggestion yet as hubby would find that annoying. Lol. But I might start doing that and just tell him to shut his phone off for a while.

@mikemikemike wrote:

I text myself all the details. Tons of people are walking around the grocery store texting. It doesn't stand out.
Mine are Krogers, 4 evaluations + cashier and bagger and questions, lots to remember....

Live consciously....
I always take a spiral notebook with the "groceries" I am looking for written on the first page. On the next page, out of view, before I go to the store, I write the depts I have to check. When I'm at the store, after I visit one of the depts, I walk away and just turn the page and write down the name and/or description of the associate and anything else needed, in my own shorthand. (For ex: long black hair in ponytail = LBlkH PT). It's worked for me for several years. It's so normal to see, especially older shoppers like me, customers with a notebook crossing out what they've bought, and adding up the totals, on a sheet of paper. I've not yet been outed.
I was writing on my "list" also with my funny shorthand. Then I started using my video on my phone and pretending like I was talking to someone. "Meat/Seafood,2,1verbal, 1 non-verbal" etc. Now, I go back and forth depending on if I feel like I'm paranoid about someone seeing me writing or speaking too much. I almost always forget the name of the bagger so I have a pen and little piece of paper in my pocket and I write their name down now every time. I've been a real cheap-skate since my divorce and having three smart girls to raise knowing I'd have to cough up college money so when I get to the register I can't help but focus on whether or not every item rang up correctly and all of my coupons went through so I've been capturing pics of the employees, uploading them to my computer and putting their name as the file name; shameful I know. But, as I shop in other cities I need an advantage and that is it. If anyone ever goes through my computer and sees all of that they might think I was stalking grocery store people. But, the more I think about it the more I don't want to do it so I try not to think about it.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/21/2017 04:57AM by spicy1.
@spicy1 wrote:

If anyone ever goes through my computer and sees all of that they might think I was stalking grocery store people.

Ha, I always laugh when I look through my phone gallery. Videos of shops (I video almost every one), shots of food and receipts, receipts, receipts.
@ShopWhisperer wrote:

@spicy1 wrote:

If anyone ever goes through my computer and sees all of that they might think I was stalking grocery store people.

Ha, I always laugh when I look through my phone gallery. Videos of shops (I video almost every one), shots of food and receipts, receipts, receipts.

I do a lot of convenience stores where I have to take photos of the restroom if anything is amiss, LOL! No one wants to see my photo gallery.
I've got food pic's up the gazoo....you'd think I'm promoting food...now on my Facebook, every bloody restaurant i L.A. shows me pic's of their latest meal....not jobs, your tracked on computer and your favorite things come up in ads. Big Brother IS watching.....

Live consciously....
I always laugh at the Facebook posts that say cheer me up and post the 8th picture on your phones cameral roll. Ok no, a bathroom, a pretzel, a receipt, Not going to cheer you up. Liz
I make a list on a back of an envelope, the more disheveled the better. I write my notes at the bottom of my list, "adding-on" to my list. For example: App Jamie init 54 5'6' blk lng pb ty (In the apparel section, the associate named Jamie initiated contact, was 54, 5 foot 6 inches, had long black hair that was pulled back and thanked me at the end)
I just finished a grocery shop! I feed 5 people daily plus 4 more a few times a month and take as many as possible. I bring a grocery list that I take notes on which looks perfectly natural. Just have to interact with a few employees and visit the restroom, no photos. The pay for me is at least $12.00 plus $15.00 reimbursement, the report is short and has no narrative. What's not to love? Not sure how I can go wrong with this one, every little bit helps!
@arkndove wrote:

I just finished a grocery shop!!

Wow, I was at the store today and was so thankful I didn't have to shop it. It was a madhouse. At least you got paid for being there!
I don't do grocery store shops (haven't found the right MSC yet) but when I am grocery shopping I have a grocery list app on my phone. I can enter the unit price and amount I am purchasing. The amount of time I spend staring at my phone while shopping makes me think you could easily take notes on your phone without raising suspicion.
The remarks were about my conflicting comments. I probably didn't take well to criticism at the time. Since then, I've gotten more practice. I have started texting myself during the shop and taking written notes and act like it is a grocery list. I also downloaded mystery shopwatch. I am determined to get better! The first store was during the holidays and they had a lot of employees working. Since then it has been slower and easier to track. Thanks for all the advice.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/2018 07:48PM by lorijordan.
Wow, yours pay better than mine. Here they are $9 or $12 reimbursement and a $5 fee. Still, I love mine and take as many as possible also. I did 38 in December! edited to add: in December they had the competitor shops also so I don't normally do that many.

@arkndove wrote:

I just finished a grocery shop! I feed 5 people daily plus 4 more a few times a month and take as many as possible. I bring a grocery list that I take notes on which looks perfectly natural. Just have to interact with a few employees and visit the restroom, no photos. The pay for me is at least $12.00 plus $15.00 reimbursement, the report is short and has no narrative. What's not to love? Not sure how I can go wrong with this one, every little bit helps!


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/2018 07:50PM by spicy1.
I keep spending more than I'm making!!! I did a different grocery store last night. It was a good night since everyone in Georgia was at home watching football. I think I was the only one in the store!
I really struggled with my first 4-5 shops but was determined to get better, and it really is going so much more smoothly now. (Although I'm still astounded at the number of associates who can't even glance at you when they pass within a foot!) These are awesome for me even at the $5/$12 deli rate, because 3 of these shops can get me enough groceries for a week, especially if supplemented by a couple of restaurant mystery shops.
Do you ask for a modest pad when you self-assign? Even an extra $3 per shop will add up over time.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
The MSC above with pad are not generous, pad not given frequently unless your in the boonies doing a lot of them...pad is never and I say never given to L.A. city shoppers, and I'm not talking zip 90001 in So. Central where shootings go on daily, yes, pad is given there, but who wants it....not recommended. I do 5 Stores in my town, all within 3 miles and just do em knowing if i asked for pad for a few miles, someone else will get the job. I just SELF-ASSIGN. Store does take coupons which helps.

Live consciously....


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/14/2018 12:20AM by Irene_L.A..
I've only done a few of these shops... I've successfully asked for a modest pad a few times and gotten it. I am certain success will vary by region and time of month. I do not believe that there is any harm in asking.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
I'e been doing numerous shops weekends for years and asked, normally of course it doesn't hurt, but knowing your MSC, you pretty much know who gives bonus/pad and who doesn't....many posts about this MSC and the difficulty of getting pads, but it does depend if they need it done and the distance, which are not in my favor.
i'm not driving these freeways for 8 dollars for 5.00 fee..... which is considered high pad.

Live consciously....


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/14/2018 12:46AM by Irene_L.A..
There can be harm in asking though because when you ask for pad with this company your request goes into request mode. In the meantime, anyone else can self-assign the shop. So, the harm is that you won't get it at all. I take all the ones in my area for base and rotate weekly the two sides of the city. I know, in my city, if someone doesn't take the shop or it's been flaked (like when they want it done on a Friday and who wants to be in that traffic?!) then I ask for pad and I get it. But they are stingy with pad, for sure.
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