If you were going to do one gas station...

Like a lot of people I've gone in recent months from being an urban dweller who did all my jobs via foot, public transit or bike to a suburban car driver. Although I can of course now drive to many more shops, so far I haven't done any gas stations (aside from a debranding audit at a very small station). Reading various threads on this board has not made me very interested in doing them. Obviously everyone has their own criteria, but I'm not a route or full-time shopper, and personally my thinking is that if I can do a Five Guys and make $24 for spending 20 minutes in the store, or make $20 asking an electronics clerk two questions about a TV, or $12 plus $10 in groceries for doing a curbside pickup, I'm not interested in spending 20 minutes in a gas station taking photos of every pump (which take a long time to be uploaded) and/or having a potentially awkward encounter with a clerk and walking away with less than $20 in gas and/or cash.

Are there any gas station jobs that are especially easy and/or tend to pay especially well or have a high reimbursement? Either brand names or MSCs are welcome. I can probably figure out colors too. smiling smiley

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/08/2020 12:04AM by NinS.

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1. If you want plenty of options, Ipsos has them. Between the legacy Maritz site, Presto and Kern scheduling (all having Ipsos postings) there are six brands, in my area, with varying degrees of mystery. They have straight mystery shops, mystery/reveal audit and straight audit. Some reach very worth-it pay rates when bonused.

2. Alta360. 3 major brands in my area, also with varying degrees of mystery. A few less photos and much less pay with no reimbursement on most. Bonuses go up a dollar at a time, if at all, and only at the end of a quarter. But on-site time is minimal.

3. Marketforce. Mystery only and mystery/reveal.

sestrahelena
For me, it is a regional gas station that offers a tiny fee, but $8 reimbursement for gas. There is also a $10 reimbursement for food.

"There's so much trouble in this world; surrounded by miracles" - Citizen Cope
I'm all about non-revealed shops for two regional C-store chains. The fees aren't that big but you get a little gas money and a snack. They are fast and easy and I can combine with a few other jobs for a great route. It also helps that both MSCs are easy to deal with. Strategic Reflections and New Image has the ones I like. I don't' do revealed gas stations because I don't need that potentially confrontational stuff in my life! LOL
The gas station mystery/audit shops can be lucrative for outliers at the end of the time period for the shops be it monthly or quarterly. This is typically when I do those shops. While each station has its own quirks they are all basically the same. Base pay and early bonuses are usually not worth it but you can negotiate and make good pay the later it gets and closer to actual shop deadline. So Gas Brand x pays $10 fee and $5 in reimbursements ($4 gas, $1 inside). It will usually bonus $10 then $20 and lastly $30. What ever it is ask for more and the higher the offered bonus the closer and more desperate they are. For this and most I like $50 min and they have to be no more than a $30 drive. However when they get to desperation mode I have gotten anywhere from $75 to $150 bonus easily. 4 outliers at this time is a quick $400 to $600.

Shopping Western NY, Northeast and Central PA, and parts of Ohio and West Virginia. Have car will travel anywhere if the monies right.
@callinectes wrote:

I'm all about non-revealed shops for two regional C-store chains. The fees aren't that big but you get a little gas money and a snack. They are fast and easy and I can combine with a few other jobs for a great route. It also helps that both MSCs are easy to deal with. Strategic Reflections and New Image has the ones I like. I don't' do revealed gas stations because I don't need that potentially confrontational stuff in my life! LOL

I will not eat the New Image "food". #1 I don't eat that type of food. #2 we now know exactly how old the item is if it says 2 pm. If it's 4 pm, it has been under a heat lamp for 5 hours at that point.
The New Image shop I do does not require me to eat anything. I have to buy something in the store but it can be anything except lottery tickets and alcohol. .

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/09/2020 10:24AM by callinectes.
Thanks for all the replies everyone - I really appreciate it. Callinectes, thanks for reminding me about New Image and Strategic Reflections. I signed up for both years ago but had long gotten into the habit of ignoring their emails because their shops required a car (or at the very least going to places only reachable by car). I just assigned myself a New Image shop around the corner from another shop I had planned for today. Only $10 plus reimbursement, but the shopper is only expected to spend 4-7 minutes inside the store (plus a visual inspection outside but only one outdoor photo). The required purchase is a bottled beverage to see if I'm offered the "buy two" sale price. Happily one of the beverages on sale this month is a Red Bull and my spouse is always happy when I bring back one or two from a shop.
Glad it helped! I love the New Image and the Strategic Reflections shops, even at the low price, because I can pick up a bunch of them while making my monthly trip to see my Dad. I go on a state highway instead of the interstate and all of the locations are just a few yards off the road. The little added time is well worth the money since I am making the trip anyway. The added bonus is the reports are quick and easy! I throw in the Walmart Recycling Bales since they are also right off the road and take less than 5 minutes.
I find that the more I can do of one brand the same day the better. In my area, brands tend to be clustered so the drive time is much less. So, my answer would be whichever brand you can get the most of at the same time. It gets significantly easier the more that you do...at least for me, my shorthand makes more sense if I'm not switching between brands. That being said, the Ipsos ones that you can do on the app are easier on the days that I do a bunch of work because I don't forget pictures (if I don't do things in roughly the same order I forget something) and I'm done when I leave the last location (and am not stressing out about submitting reports before they disappear from my page due to the 24 hour rule). I usually only do the stations that Ipsos (both the legacy Maritz and the Presto shops) has and one of the good things is that I get paid within the week. So, my reimbursements are very timely which is great in my book.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/11/2020 05:12AM by KarenMSW.
Anything with a good bonus and has the option to provide an loa if photos have to be taken works for me. I try to stay away from debranded shops and those that are supposed to be mystery shops with photos and no reveal because that tends to be a problem when confronted by an angry clerk who sees you on the video camera taking pictures outside.
@callinectes wrote:

The New Image shop I do does not require me to eat anything. I have to buy something in the store but it can be anything except lottery tickets and alcohol. .
Sorry. You referred to a snack. The only shops that I do for New Image are mystery shops not revealed and require a specific purchase, which could be eaten, but I choose not to eat it. There is also a revealed shop (C-store) but I quit doing those because the clerks were creepy and kept hitting on me.
I worked through the end of February-early March on some Q1 heavily bonused gas stations. Did over 100, $7-8 reimbursement in the c-store.

Filled my “pandemic pantry” with the C-store peanut butter, spaghetti, cereal, Mac n cheese, condiments, sugar, flour, cooking oil, canned milk... and donated about half of the $1000 reimbursement to local food pantry.

When everything shut down, I was READY. :-)
I just did 5 shops for the same station and MS company at $20 each plus fuel and store purchase. I will not do this again. I had lots of problems finishing the first shop on the website. It kept locking up on me, wouldn’t let me save or submit. I switched to a different computer, wrote up most of the shop and hit save. Then went in to edit and it locked up on me again. I had to exit without properly closing. My “saved” version was not there so I had to start over. Took 2 hrs to finally get it submitted. I had less problems with the other shops. I did decided these shops were definitely not worth it. But the shops still aren’t done. One of the five, claims to be missing a photo of a alternate fuel pump that did not exist. How do you post a photo of something that doesn’t exist?? But is worse, when I click the missing photo button, it takes me to this question but there is no button to upload a photo. I’ve emailed over 5 times now for help and can’t get response from anyone. Once I realized that these were costing me time and money, I tried to cancel the other shops I was scheduled for. How do you do that? Couldn’t get anyone to respond. These shops were scheduled through KSS, should I contact them with my problems? Help.
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