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The ACE Mystery Shopping Blog Has Moved!

If you check the ACE Mystery Shopping blog frequently (I hope you do!) then you will have noticed some changes. If you are not already subscribed to our email updates, then in order to keep getting updates from the blog, you will want visit the new blog and subscribe again. I know, I know, it is a little inconvenient, but what would you do without all the funny, witty, brilliant, helpful, and luminescent posts.

In the move we have made a few adjustments, such as splitting the blog into a blog for our clients and blog for our shoppers. Here are links to get to each of them:

Combined Blog: http://www.acemysteryshopping.com/blog/
Shoppers Blog: http://www.acemysteryshopping.com/shoppers-blog/
Clients Blog: http://www.acemysteryshopping.com/clients-blog/

If you have any questions or you just want to make sure that you are getting notifications, you can email me at john@acemystersyshopping.com.

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Is My HARD Work Lost?!?!

Have you ever been working on completing a shop report, spent valuable time entering all the information, clicked save, and LOST all your work because the system timed out?  We certainly appreciate the hard work of our shoppers, and we DO NOT want this to happen to you. Here are a few suggested solutions to prevent this from happening.

1)      Save OFTEN

The shop reporting system automatically logs you out of your account after 15 minutes. Click the SAVE button frequently (after each section, for example). Each time you click SAVE, the timer will start over. This is the SIMPLEST way to prevent your information from being lost.

 

2)       Open TWO tabs

When you log in to your account, open TWO tabs, not just one. You can then work on the survey in one tab, leaving the other tab open to the open opportunities page (or any page within the ACE system). When you are preparing to submit, refresh the second tab FIRST. If the system has timed you out, you can then log in on this second tab. You will then be able to save and submit the survey in your original tab.

 

3)      Click the BACK button

If you attempt to save but realize you have been logged out, click the back button. All the information that you entered should now appear. Then, open a NEW tab and log in. Once you are successfully signed in, you can then return to your survey tab and submit.

 

The automated time-out feature is a security precaution to prevent unauthorized access to your account. We are constantly working to provide the best service possible to our shoppers! If you have issues with shop reporting, please feel free to contact us!

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Secrets to Being Perfect!

Are you one of those people that always have to have a perfect score no matter what you are doing? Do you often find yourself waiting anxiously to find out what you scored on your last shop? If so…keep reading! Today, I would like to share a few tips with you to help you get that perfect score!

The most common mistake we see as editors is not following instructions. Simple things like the instructions requesting a number, and the shopper providing a sentence. This always has to be changed on our end and leads to a lower score for you, the shopper.

Another error often made is not addressing all of the questions in each comment section, especially if it was a negative response. Keep in mind, negative is not always bad, but anything you answer “no” to must be justified in your comments.

My third tip is to tell you please do not use incomplete sentences and abbreviations in any comment box. Yes, it seems you are merely “talking” to our team but in reality your survey gets submitted directly to our clients and so it should always be well written, with complete sentences and proper grammar. It is a professional report and should always be treated as such.

The final thing we often see is shoppers not following the scenario precisely.  Each shop provides very specific scenarios in order to obtain the information desired, if it is not followed, the shop can possibly be declined. We don’t want that to happen! Make sure you always read the scenario before doing a shop as they often change and follow it. Although we encourage you to be creative at times with other things, your creativity must stay in line with the scenario and not alter it at all.

Follow these tips and there is a good chance your grade is going to raise! What does your grade matter you ask? Having a higher grade allows you to have more prestigious shops offered to you, higher paying shops offered to you, your applications approved more often, and so many more things! It’s definitely worth your effort! Try these tips on your next survey and start reaping the rewards now!

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Make A Day of It!

One of the most common questions we get asked here at ACE Mystery Shopping is “how do I make more money?” Well…since you asked so nicely, we decided to let you in on our little secret!  The best way to get the most money for your time is to become a bundle shopper!

How do you bundle, you ask? First, you need to become a mystery shopper.  Once that happens, you will gain access to our website and allowed to choose through the jobs we have available. When you are choosing shops in Open Opportunities, look for multiple shops in the same area.  You can do this by adjusting your search criteria.

Once you have applied for and are accepted for all these shops, check out their due dates. Then, you can pick a day that you have a larger sum of free time and bundle your efforts all into one day. By doing this you save gas and travel time, which makes the money not only add up faster but because your expenses are less, you actually make more for your time! Throw in a few shops that are strictly phone calls and you just might be considered bundle-spectacular!

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Shoppers Beware: How to Identify A Scam

Legitimate mystery shopping companies, including us here at ACE Mystery Shopping, work hard to provide quality service to our shoppers and clients. However, some unscrupulous individuals continue to use mystery shopping as a disguise for scams. We want to make sure everyone can identify these scams immediately.

FACT: No legitimate mystery shopping company should charge you a fee to sign-up or become a member.

Any advertisement or posting that encourages you to sign-up as a mystery shopper but charges a fee is a SCAM. We do NOT charge shoppers to sign-up or to conduct shops. We PAY YOU for your services, not the other way around.

Some companies will attempt to disguise themselves as legitimate, and may even make assurances that they are NOT a scam, but then prompt you to pay a fee to become a shopper. Here is a screenshot from one such SCAM:

scam

Again, signing up with ACE Mystery Shopping is ALWAYS FREE. WE DO NOT CHARGE YOU ANYTHING to sign-up and view all available shops.

FACT: We pay shoppers after a shop is completed.

Any person or group that offers to send you a check/money order for mystery shopping BEFORE you complete a shop is a SCAM. Most of the time, these people will send a check/money order in a LARGE sum and provide detailed directions on how to cash it. One shopper forwarded such a fraudulent check to us today.

fraudcheck1

They will then direct you to send a portion of it back, and tell you to keep the rest for your efforts.  These checks will then BOUNCE, leaving you on the hook for a large sum of money. Here at ACE, we pay shoppers on or around the 15th of the month following your completed shop(s).  We also have a detailed blog post describing our payment process.

FACT: We do not send out unsolicited emails.

We only send emails to shoppers who are registered with us. Every email we send comes directly from one of us here at ACE, and will ALWAYS have @acemysteryshopping.com as the sender’s domain.  Check the email address of any email you receive from someone claiming to be with a mystery shopping company. Scammers will use generic e-mail domains (@gmail.com, @live.com) or fake email domains in their communication. Our contact information is clearly listed on our website, and we are available by phone, email, and live chat to answer your questions.

We hope that these facts will make scams easier to spot. However, scammers are constantly evolving and developing new techniques to attempt to fool honest, hardworking shoppers. If you receive a solicitation or believe someone is attempting a mystery shopping scam, please contact the FTC and your state’s attorney general.   The Federal Trade Commission also has a brief discussion on current shopper scams, which you can view HERE. We are a member of the Mystery Shopping Providers Association, which has a strict code of standards and ethics that we abide by to provide our shoppers and clients with the best possible service.

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How to Become a Mystery Shopper

How To Become a Mystery Shopper (click this link)

This is a great video explaining how to become a mystery shopper from examiner.com

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Six Degrees of Shoparation

Many of you have heard of the “six degrees of separation” theory, or the idea that you can be connected to any other person in the world through six or fewer steps. While the idea of being connected to actors, athletes, and billionaires is fascinating, there can be practical applications of this theory as well. Yes, I’m talking about MYSTERY SHOPPING!

We are ALWAYS looking for qualified, talented shoppers to join our shopper database. You may not personally know someone from Puerto Rico, for example, but chances are someone you know (or someone they know) knows someone who lives there. These “word of mouth” referrals are invaluable to us as a company. The BEST resource we have is YOU!

We consistently have a variety of shops available in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Canada. Tell your friends and family members about ACE Mystery Shopping, and encourage them to sign up and visit our blog. These friends tell their friends, and pretty soon YOU have helped create a whole new network of shoppers! We are always thrilled to welcome new shoppers aboard.

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