Overview: These assignments are definitely not for everyone. Those that embarrass easily should probably consider taking a pass. Others that are a bit more adventuresome might find these interesting and even fun.
So what are adult boutiques? Well, a lot of people have the idea that these businesses are seedy and tawdry. The ones in the run-down parts of town flashing bright signs advertising XXX-rated merchandise probably are. But there’s a more tasteful version located in strip malls featuring clean brightly lit premises with attractive and organized displays that are targeting more mainstream shoppers.
Project Variations: The visit itself is usually completed in the same manner for most assignments. It’s the purchase requirement that varies. Typically the assignment either specifies that the shopper purchases lingerie for one scenario, or novelty items for another scenario.
Visit & Reporting Requirements: Most assignments require the shopper to be on the premises for a minimum of a half hour. Reporting typically requires heavy narrative, and can run another 30 to 45 minutes.
Strategies: Be sure you are comfortable with completing one of these assignments before accepting one. Regardless of the scenario, you will be required to visit all sections of the store. To ensure you know what this entails, those sections will include lingerie, hosiery, shoes, candles, all manner of lotions, bachelorette party items, videos, and yes, a wide and bewildering array of sex toys and accessories.
You must browse through each section. An employee should be touching base with you from time to time as you make your way throughout the store. Each time they do, you need to ask them a question about some of the merchandise in whatever section you happen to be in at the time. Yes, that includes asking about the sex toys. If you fail to do so, your report will likely be rejected. So once again, be sure you are confident enough to talk frankly and openly about intimate matters before considering doing one of these.
The client will also want you to note how many other customers were on the premises, the condition of the premises, how many associates were on staff, and what the associates were doing.
Details about your multiple interactions with the associates is a must. The client wants to know if the associate was professional and engaging, as well as tactful and informative. They will also want to know what the associate told you about the merchandise you asked about, and if they tried to upsell you.
Sometimes the assignment is concluded with a bit of an integrity test. The shopper is required to pay in cash, and to report on how the associate handled it.
What Others Have to Say: Very little has been said on www.mysteryshopforum.com about adult boutique assignments. It would be understandable if shoppers were somewhat reticent to talk about their experiences on such a visit. However, there are members that have found them fun and easy to do, and who enjoy the reiumbursement. Lingerie lovers eagerly look forward to these assignments.
Estimated Pay: Pay is usually nominal, around $10 to $15. But it is the reiumbursement that makes these assignments appealing. Some compensate the shopper for $25 in purchases, while some go as high as $50 or more.
MSCs: One of the mystery shopping companies that offers these types of assignments is Measure Consumer Perspectives. A soon-to-be defunct company, Secret Shopping Services, also had an adult boutique client with many locations, so be on the lookout for them to show up on the job boards with a new MSC in the near future.