Do I have a right to be upset?

Hey guys!

I have only been shopping since June but have not had any of my shops rejected yet until today. I just don’t know if I am being ridiculous - I feel like I am not and it’s complete BS, but would love opinions of more seasoned shoppers.

The situation: A MSC I work with often paired up with a third party app/MSC for a shop. I was to download the app and use that to complete my shop. Not a lot of information was given, and I perused the app a bit but basically I could not look at the shop in the app until I was physically at this pet shop on the day of my shop. I will not get derailed talking about how awful this app and the entire experience was but 0/10, would not do it again - and that was before I found out they weren’t paying me.

So basically you have to take a picture of each product/display/etc. they describe but you cannot go to the next item or even know what it is until you have taken a picture of the current item. All the picture taking is in-app. There is also no place for comments until the very end, once you have taken pictures of everything. So one of the items is a display of Bissell products. I was searching forever and could not find it. Finally I approach an associate and ask them. She said they do not have the display or products at their store. So at this point I have no idea what to do, I cannot move to the next screen without taking a picture of SOMETHING and there is zero FAQ or direction on what to do if something simply doesn’t exist. So I just take a random picture of a display and move on. At the end I give a detailed synopsis of why that picture was missing.

So basically they are rejecting the shop because of that - “Your photo was of the wrong area in the store. If you were not able to locate the Bissell display, then a photo of the Bissell products in store or the cleaning supplies section is the best area to photograph. "[] Check out our guide to a great product/display photo by clicking here.”

Okay. That is all fine and great except I was told by an associate those products and display are not in the store I was shopping. NOWHERE in their guide or “tips” or anywhere else can I find where it tells you what to do in that sort of scenario. Is this just MS general knowledge or do you think it is kind of ridiculous for them to assume people would think to take pictures of other specific items if that if it is not outlined anywhere?

I wrote them back and explained the situation and I just received a reply that they are holding to the rejection. I will never use this app again and I really want to reply to let them know how I feel (in a professional manner of course) but maybe I am just a dummy and this is common knowledge.

Sorry for the novel and thanks for any insight!

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/09/2021 12:24AM by lizbtayl.

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I will finish reading your post but first I want to warn you that we are not allowed to mention a client and the mystery shop company that does them in the same post. So please edit your post and take out one or the other. You can use a general name like pet store or take out the name of the mystery shop company.
I'm not familiar with the guidelines for that shop, but based on what you've written I think you're getting burned.
I also am not familiar with that shop but agree it sounds like you are getting burned. There was nothing you could do except take a photo of something to move on. I am always skeptical of shops that require third party applications. It is bad enough when somebody is using SASSIE or other reporting software they can't control, but by the time you are using some third party ap on site to record a shop I am VERY hesitant about playing.
Sounds like the cleaning product company was the client and Mobee (instruction link) was the MSC.

I have never tried Mobee because they only pay in gift card points and, from what I think I saw, was very little at that.

Thank you! Definitely good to know to stay away from that kind of thing in the future.
Yes sorry I didn’t realize I couldn’t include the MSC and company in my post together and was alerted to edit my post so I just took both out. It was actually BestMark who partnered with Mobee for a pet shop. I’d be paid through BestMark $15 if my “mission” was accepted by Mobee.
" assume people would think to take pictures of other specific items if that if it is not outlined"
I might have taken a photo of a blank wall to show the product doesn't exist........ assume nothing

Consider this a learning experience, be glad you didn't shell out for a meal you didn't want anyhow, and move on.
I used to do a lot for Mobee when they had the Mastercard gift card to cash out, but they don't have it any longer. I've had some jobs rejected due to things not present in the right place or the photo was not of the right area etc. It's very annoying after spending the time to hunt them down. Once in a great while they reverse the rejection, but not usually. I don't do much with that app any longer. They require too much for the reward. If I'm in an area with extra time, I'll sometimes check it out and do something quick, but mostly not.

The more I learn about people...the more I like my dog..

Mark Twain
I’ve hand-printed PRODUCT NOT AVAILABLE on a piece of paper, photographed that, and uploaded it to reports so that I could complete the work. Always have been accepted.
I tried a shop for a new-for-me MSC using a third-party app, and it was a nightmare. The app didn't work like it was supposed to, even though my "test" shop was fine. I spend so much time trying to capture the photos, but nothing worked. I probably will never use any app like this again!

The MSC should include some typical "what if" scenarios a shopper might encounter and instruct on what to do in those cases. We're not mind readers, but often we're expected to be!

I learn something new every day, but not everyday!
I've learned to never trust spell-check or my phone's auto-fill feature.
I have done 2 of these exact shops. The first time was a little cumbersome because, like you said you cannot move on to the next question. I also found that neither of the locations sold the Bissell products, and I did confirm by asking an employee, so I took a photo of the pet cleaning supplies section and noted in the comments that they did not sell or rent the product. Both shops were approved.
The problem here is that you are being held responsible for the store's inventory, and penalized because they don't stock something that the client wants to see on the shelf. If they leave you to come up with your own solution if the product isn't there, then they should pay you no matter how you solve it.
Was that the pictures of the floor that had just been cleaned, waxed, and polished? I had one of those but had to cancel it.
No you had to run around the store taking pictures of the different animal displays, grooming area, aisles, etc. The worst part was you could not skip ahead so a) I’d have to stand around waiting for kids to get out of the way because I did not want people thinking I’m taking pictures of their children (lol), and b) it would say “walk down the center aisle to the back, go a bit to the left and take a picture of the left aisle” then the same thing but on the right side, then next it wanted you to go BACK to the left and walk all the way to the end and take a picture, and then do the same on the right side. I was literally walking in circles, it was SO crazy. I think that is why I am the most mad, it took forever so to not get paid for all that insanity was infuriating.
That would be an ehh forget about it you can come to do it your self. That is unless it was an MSC that I earned a ton of money through.
Right, and that is the problem. I had no idea it would be like that until I was there doing the shop and the night before BestMark, who paired up with this stupid third party MSC for the shop emailed me and was like cancel now if you can’t do it, we are really counting on you to be there tomorrow. I do a lot of shops with BestMark so I felt pressured to finish it since I was already there. Blah! Lesson learned and never again!!
It sounds like the issue is with the app. Their reject rate is sky high and very inconsistent. They are known for confusing and ambiguous instructions. If you received an email stating the reason for the reject, you can try and contest it, but they rarely overturn it. If you are using this app as a third party, I don't know what your options are. Good luck to you and if it works out in your favor, let us know,

Try the app Field AGent

I like Field Agent. They pay fast and the only time I had a rejection was my own fault for a wrong location. So much less demanding than Mobee or the other one that used to have beer audits..what was it called? Oh yeah...Easy Shift..are they still around?

The more I learn about people...the more I like my dog..

Mark Twain

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/14/2021 11:59PM by MsJudi.
Sounds like they wanted a picture of the cleaning product shelf to confirm Bissell was not on the shelf.
Yeah, and I think I would have thought to do that except in their directive it said “look for this display, it’s usually at the front of the store by the cash registers” and then showed pictures of the front of the store. It did not dawn on me I should then go into their cleaning aisle and take a picture (which is on the other side of the store). Oh well!
I can sympathize with your situation. A bank shop I did about a year ago was rejected because when an editor asked me for additional photos, I emailed them to the scheduler. I did not know (and neither did the scheduler) that I was supposed to get back into the report and attach them. I had never been asked to edit a report before. The scheduler thanked me for sending the additional images and made me think that she was going to forward them to the editor. Then I received an email from an editor that my report was rejected. I was so disappointed - not for the money but for my wasted time and effort. Looking back, I wish I had complained to the corporate office. So frequently, shop instructions are either conflicting or unclear about certain situations that come up, and they leave you to make a split-second decision that could get your report rejected. A shopper should never lose pay because of inadequacy of the shop instructions.

Here's what I would do in your place: take snapshots of all the Q & A that's available for this shop, and file a complaint with the attorney general's office for the state where the provider is located. As a shopper, you have the right to expect that the information you've been given is enough to do your task properly. You should not have to play guessing games. Also, you could find the email address of the CEO of the company and send a message.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/17/2021 02:54AM by digikiss.
If I were you, I would consider not working for this mystery shopping company again. Either that or become very selective when taking shop assignments from them. I have also just started to learn how to use these apps myself and I have been mystery shopping since 2001. I found using the app available through a particular mystery shopping company (not Bestmark and the app is not Mobee) to be difficult. The form on it is designed in a way that makes no sense and requires that you go back to the employee numerous times to ask if something is in stock or boxed on the shelf. Also, I found myself having to spend much more time in the store because everything had to be done in the store on the app. I did not think the app was such a great idea, but I guess some people like it because normally when you leave the store the job is done. Not in my case. The app became stuck somehow. It remembered and saved all of the information and photos I put in (thank goodness), but it would not move from one page to the next. When I got home I still had to go on my desktop to finish and submit the report.

I don't exactly enjoy trying to submit shops on a mini screen anyway. I wonder whose idea this was.

With regard to your situation, what might have happened is that the store may have carried the product at one time, and whoever was responsible to do so may never have informed the mystery shopping company that the product was no longer being carried. Or maybe it is carried in their other stores, but not in this one, and no one informed the mystery shopping company. I still think they should have paid you something.

"Evolve thyself and lose all hate...." Orphaned Land

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/17/2021 03:58AM by alannajm.
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