Why is Trend Source so cheap?

I've been shopping for TS for a few months. When I started, I was excited because I really hate grocery shopping and I thought..."at least now I can get paid". I've gotten a couple calls from schedulers desperate to get a shop done and offering a whopping $10 PAD for me to have the pleasure of driving an extra 40 miles round trip. Although these type shops are required in my everyday life - paid or not - I think next time I'm called, I'm going to pass...unless they really do make me an offer I can't refuse.

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By taking the shops at a dirt cheap rate you inadvertently lead the MSC to believe the fee and reimbursement was fine with you. If you've changed your mind, don't apply for or accept them anymore.
TS and the other MSCs pay as little as they can. Because they can - it is as simple as that. Because they want to make as much money as they can.

Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
When I asked for $10 PAD I was told no.....the first and ONLY time I ever asked....it was quite a distance a way....tongue sticking out smiley
@myst4au wrote:

TS and the other MSCs pay as little as they can. Because they can - it is as simple as that. Because they want to make as much money as they can.

Exactly. It's good business for them to get an independent contractor to work as cheap as possible. It's bad business for an independent contractor to take shops if the contractor is not going to make money, which is an individual determination that each of us makes for himself. I would not consider driving an extra 45 miles for $10.
@roflwofl wrote:

@myst4au wrote:

TS and the other MSCs pay as little as they can. Because they can - it is as simple as that. Because they want to make as much money as they can.

Exactly. It's good business for them to get an independent contractor to work as cheap as possible. It's bad business for an independent contractor to take shops if the contractor is not going to make money, which is an individual determination that each of us makes for himself. I would not consider driving an extra 45 miles for $10.

yep, i agree and of course there will be those who say "great, keep turning down those $10 shops cuz it's more for me, etc, etc." To those who say that, "that is about all your time is worth, i guess"

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/15/2015 03:58AM by parkcitybrian.
We get $16 dollar shops for a local grocery store. $14 total is not bad for a grocery. Another MSC pays $9 total. I did two and in the second one I had to itemize over 50 items not stocked when I shopped. I have not done another since then.

Do not read so much, look about you and think of what you see there.
Richard Feynman-- letter to Ashok Arora, 4 January 1967, published in Perfectly Reasonable Deviations from the Beaten Track (2005) p. 230
One day I logged into the TS website to see a notice that they were paying too much PAD and for us to stop asking for so much. Phhht. Let someone else go in the hole for milk and bread. I'm not doing it. I hate the shops that have such a narrow window anyway. When I see ones that have a 10 day window I take them because I can fit them in when I'm already in the area. I'm not running myself ragged for the others. I leave them on the board.

I enjoy awkward questions and uncomfortable silences. This gas station pavement is $%^@*#& hot.
@CoffeeQueen wrote:

One day I logged into the TS website to see a notice that they were paying too much PAD and for us to stop asking for so much. Phhht. Let someone else go in the hole for milk and bread. I'm not doing it. I hate the shops that have such a narrow window anyway. When I see ones that have a 10 day window I take them because I can fit them in when I'm already in the area. I'm not running myself ragged for the others. I leave them on the board.
Their "too much distance pay" is zero! tongue sticking out smiley At least in my case...
@SunnyDays2 wrote:

@CoffeeQueen wrote:

One day I logged into the TS website to see a notice that they were paying too much PAD and for us to stop asking for so much. Phhht. Let someone else go in the hole for milk and bread. I'm not doing it. I hate the shops that have such a narrow window anyway. When I see ones that have a 10 day window I take them because I can fit them in when I'm already in the area. I'm not running myself ragged for the others. I leave them on the board.
Their "too much distance pay" is zero! tongue sticking out smiley At least in my case...

IKR? I've been paid distance pay 3 times for one particular town. I asked for 15 and they came back and asked me if I'd take 13. Seriously? Your gonna nickel and dime me for $2? I took it because I refuse to haggle over $2 but I haven't taken it since. They can call me and offer me the $15 I've made clear is my price to go there or they can call someone else.
A couple of other companies have asked me to go there and the lowest offer I've gotten is $20. So my $15 was entirely reasonable. Things like that just piss me off LOL.

I enjoy awkward questions and uncomfortable silences. This gas station pavement is $%^@*#& hot.
@CoffeeQueen wrote:

@SunnyDays2 wrote:

@CoffeeQueen wrote:

One day I logged into the TS website to see a notice that they were paying too much PAD and for us to stop asking for so much. Phhht. Let someone else go in the hole for milk and bread. I'm not doing it. I hate the shops that have such a narrow window anyway. When I see ones that have a 10 day window I take them because I can fit them in when I'm already in the area. I'm not running myself ragged for the others. I leave them on the board.
Their "too much distance pay" is zero! tongue sticking out smiley At least in my case...

IKR? I've been paid distance pay 3 times for one particular town. I asked for 15 and they came back and asked me if I'd take 13. Seriously? Your gonna nickel and dime me for $2? I took it because I refuse to haggle over $2 but I haven't taken it since. They can call me and offer me the $15 I've made clear is my price to go there or they can call someone else.
A couple of other companies have asked me to go there and the lowest offer I've gotten is $20. So my $15 was entirely reasonable. Things like that just piss me off LOL.

I wish I could "Liked By" more than once.
That's my one beef with TS. The BVI's are needed right away, you have 4 hours to call the manager, you have to do it ASAP. None of this fits in with my busy schedule so I don't do them anymore. tongue sticking out smiley
MSC's do keep notes on what a shopper is willing to accept for a given shop. They start with the shoppers who will take the least and call in that order. When they get to me, they know what I will ask for and always start off at a couple bucks lower than that. I hold firm and even if they say something like, "X is all I am allowed to offer." Even if it's $2 less than what I quoted, I will not back down and leave the door open for them to call me back. 90% of the time it is a bluff and they will accept my offer or put me on hold for such a short period of time, I know they didn't talk to someone and come back and accept my offer.

I never back down from a price when I make a counter offer. I decide what I'm willing to take and stick with it. If that means another shopper gets it for $2 less, then good for them.

If the MSC calls me back with even less time until the shop is due and I already have food thawing in the sink or some other inconvenience, the shop fee goes up from my original offer. They will take whatever they can get from each shopper. They know not to call me with a low ball offer.

My phone does not ring as often, but when it does ring, it is music to my ears.
This is one of the first MSCs I ever shopped for. My first assignment was a grocery audit - I hated it, and the pay turned out to be awful based on my time and effort, but I did it to get started. Once I learned a bunch of newbie lessons about how much time things take and was better able to assess my real earnings, I saw that this MSC is mostly not worth my time. I will very occasionally (2-3 times/year) do one of their regular grocery shops at the overpriced natural foods chain when I want to go shopping there anyway. I learned how to do those particular shops without spending twice as much as the combined pay/reimbursement, so it's manageable. But overall, this MSC seems pretty cheap.
I don't mean to down the company, I feel like they do me a favor. They have a ton of grocery shops in my area and they are always flying off the boards. So they are basically keeping the soccer mom shoppers busy while I go after the money.

I enjoy awkward questions and uncomfortable silences. This gas station pavement is $%^@*#& hot.
Hell I would just be happy if I could actually get paid from Trend source. I have done about 8 shops over a 7 week period for them and haven't seen a thin dime. Its bad enough that they are cheap and call you expecting you to drop everything at a moments notice to take last minute jobs and then give you these narrative heavy jobs for little pay, but when they just don't pay you, it is not an acceptble way to do business. When I fussed about this and asked to see about maybe canceling a check because it seemed to be lost in the mail I got a really snitty response from Elizabeth the office manager who made comments like as a free agent I should be paying attention to when my money is due blah blah and I told her I was perfectly are of when payment is rendered the 5 and the 20th but I still have received no money. Now I did move in the middle of this, but didn't put my change of address in until the 3rd of August but supposedly they sent a check on the 20th and I moved on the 31st, Are you going to tell me the postal system can't get a envelope from San Diego to Denver in 2 weeks!!! I am rethinking doing business with them. I have already dropped GFK and I am not sure I want to keep Sentry Marketing either . They have some really ridiculous requirements. I just did a burger shop for them for the vast sum of $4.00 plus reimbursement, had to drive 66 miles one way and then they returned my narrative to me and said I wasn't descriptive enough about my burger that they needed to be able to taste it through my words. That narrative + form took me close to 2 hours to do ...

Shopping til' I drop, no joke here!
@aprilredbird wrote:

Hell I would just be happy if I could actually get paid from Trend source. I have done about 8 shops over a 7 week period for them and haven't seen a thin dime. Its bad enough that they are cheap and call you expecting you to drop everything at a moments notice to take last minute jobs and then give you these narrative heavy jobs for little pay, but when they just don't pay you, it is not an acceptble way to do business. When I fussed about this and asked to see about maybe canceling a check because it seemed to be lost in the mail I got a really snitty response from Elizabeth the office manager who made comments like as a free agent I should be paying attention to when my money is due blah blah and I told her I was perfectly are of when payment is rendered the 5 and the 20th but I still have received no money. Now I did move in the middle of this, but didn't put my change of address in until the 3rd of August but supposedly they sent a check on the 20th and I moved on the 31st, Are you going to tell me the postal system can't get a envelope from San Diego to Denver in 2 weeks!!! I am rethinking doing business with them. I have already dropped GFK and I am not sure I want to keep Sentry Marketing either . They have some really ridiculous requirements. I just did a burger shop for them for the vast sum of $4.00 plus reimbursement, had to drive 66 miles one way and then they returned my narrative to me and said I wasn't descriptive enough about my burger that they needed to be able to taste it through my words. That narrative + form took me close to 2 hours to do ...

With the issues you have had along with a somewhat "other than positive attitude" my suggestion = find another line of endeavor? Just sayin'
@aprilredbird wrote:

Hell I would just be happy if I could actually get paid from Trend source. I have done about 8 shops over a 7 week period for them and haven't seen a thin dime. Its bad enough that they are cheap and call you expecting you to drop everything at a moments notice to take last minute jobs and then give you these narrative heavy jobs for little pay, but when they just don't pay you, it is not an acceptble way to do business. When I fussed about this and asked to see about maybe canceling a check because it seemed to be lost in the mail I got a really snitty response from Elizabeth the office manager who made comments like as a free agent I should be paying attention to when my money is due blah blah and I told her I was perfectly are of when payment is rendered the 5 and the 20th but I still have received no money. Now I did move in the middle of this, but didn't put my change of address in until the 3rd of August but supposedly they sent a check on the 20th and I moved on the 31st, Are you going to tell me the postal system can't get a envelope from San Diego to Denver in 2 weeks!!! I am rethinking doing business with them. I have already dropped GFK and I am not sure I want to keep Sentry Marketing either . They have some really ridiculous requirements. I just did a burger shop for them for the vast sum of $4.00 plus reimbursement, had to drive 66 miles one way and then they returned my narrative to me and said I wasn't descriptive enough about my burger that they needed to be able to taste it through my words. That narrative + form took me close to 2 hours to do ...

Why do you not use Direct Deposit?

I have worked for Trendsource for years and have always been paid on time via direct deposit.

Liz
aprilredbird, Trendsource is a solid company and you do not indicate in your post that they said they were not going to pay you. There may be some delay of a few days as a result of your move or other issues before this is worked out.

Your comment about what they said about knowing when your money is due indicates there may be some confusion on your part about the due dates for payments on the various reports. My understanding is they pay twice a month but regardless of that, what matters is the terms of payment for the individual shops. A shop you have completed and which has been accepted may still not be due because of the stated terms for that shop or type of shop. I think this is what they are talking about when they mention you should be aware of when your shops are due for payment.

Elizabeth at Trendsource gave you good advice but now that you have called her snitty on a national forum, you may not receive that consideration in the future. From the sound of your post Elizabeth was probably not the only snitty person involved in the interaction. I am not trying to criticize or upset you, but you have to realize that when you are dealing with the MSCs you are not dealing from a position of great strength. If you want to work for them, you have to get along and treat them as you would like to be treated.

You owe Elizabeth a public apology along with a private one and it would be to your advantage to address that and see if you can make amends. By making this belittling comment about Elizabeth, you have demeaned yourself in front of all other MSCs who may take this into consideration when you want to shop for them. We are working in a very small world which includes hundreds of MSCs but includes millions of shoppers. I am sure you can do the math on how that works out for the disagreeable and contentious.

You seem literate, detailed, energetic, and driven. All those qualities will work in your favor to develop yourself into a first rate shopper with a profitable business. All you have to do is move forward carefully. I wish you the best.

Mary Davis Nowell. Based close to Fort Worth. Shopping Interstate 20 east and west, Interstate 35 north and south.
I have never had any problems with Trendsource. In fact, they are one of my favorite companies to work with. The schedulers are fantastic and fair, and they have never been late in payments. Their fees are very much in line, even in some cases more, with other companies I work with.
As long as legal citizens are bidding against illegals who are willing to take "ANYTHING" we will always be offered less. MS company's do nothing to ensure the contractor whose SSI is used is the actual shopper. They don't want to know because if they had to verify this information then they would find those who are legal won't work for pennies and only illegals will.
I know for a fact how the illegals are working under other legal citizens (relatives) names and SSI. Basically its bait and switch. If a illegal does not have to pay taxes and can hide under the income cap then we will never see more money from these type of shops.
Just refuse to accept these shops and eventually they will have to evaluate why they can't fill the assignments with a variety of shoppers.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 08/21/2015 10:46PM by iiCyou.
Try doing the business inspections, I LOVE this company and the pay is fantastic, as far as I am concerned.
@iiCyou wrote:

As long as legal citizens are bidding against illegals who are willing to take "ANYTHING" we will always be offered less. MS company's do nothing to ensure the contractor whose SSI is used is the actual shopper. They don't want to know because if they had to verify this information then they would find those who are legal won't work for pennies and only illegals will.
I know for a fact how the illegals are working under other legal citizens (relatives) names and SSI. Basically its bait and switch. If a illegal does not have to pay taxes and can hide under the income cap then we will never see more money from these type of shops.
Just refuse to accept these shops and eventually they will have to evaluate why they can't fill the assignments with a variety of shoppers.

"...I know for a fact..." umm, would you care to share your knowledge of that "fact"? Otherwise, your seemingly political screed is nothing more than just a lot of hot air. Just sayin'
When that scheduler calls me I tell him I wouldn't get up out of bed for that and hang up!
I have been registered with the company for about a year and never took on a shop because nothing 2as worth my time. I received a call from them on Christmas eve asking me to do a shop the same night. I figured that they must be very desperate to try to call that day and get a shopper. My mind started imagining the bonus they were offering and since I had nothing to do I thought to inquire about the shop. I was surprised to learn that they wanted me to do the shop for some $3 bonus........ I came up with some lame excuse while trying not to laugh and get off the phone.
@iiCyou wrote:

As long as legal citizens are bidding against illegals who are willing to take "ANYTHING" we will always be offered less. MS company's do nothing to ensure the contractor whose SSI is used is the actual shopper. They don't want to know because if they had to verify this information then they would find those who are legal won't work for pennies and only illegals will.
I know for a fact how the illegals are working under other legal citizens (relatives) names and SSI. Basically its bait and switch. If a illegal does not have to pay taxes and can hide under the income cap then we will never see more money from these type of shops.
Just refuse to accept these shops and eventually they will have to evaluate why they can't fill the assignments with a variety of shoppers.

Your really Donald Trump... right?

I enjoy awkward questions and uncomfortable silences. This gas station pavement is $%^@*#& hot.
@CoffeeQueen wrote:

@iiCyou wrote:

As long as legal citizens are bidding against illegals who are willing to take "ANYTHING" we will always be offered less. MS company's do nothing to ensure the contractor whose SSI is used is the actual shopper. They don't want to know because if they had to verify this information then they would find those who are legal won't work for pennies and only illegals will.
I know for a fact how the illegals are working under other legal citizens (relatives) names and SSI. Basically its bait and switch. If a illegal does not have to pay taxes and can hide under the income cap then we will never see more money from these type of shops.
Just refuse to accept these shops and eventually they will have to evaluate why they can't fill the assignments with a variety of shoppers.

Your really Donald Trump... right?

ha....off with their heads !!!
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