Overview: This is one time you get to lie down on the job and get paid for it. So give those tired feet a break from tramping through malls and the plethora of mega stores. Instead of having to wearily stand in one place while listening to yet another interminable sales presentation, lie back on a comfy bed and take mental notes.
Or better yet, use an audio voice recorder if you’re afraid you might accidentally fall asleep! That’s not entirely unthinkable, considering how many mystery shoppers work long hours both in the field completing visits and at the home office finishing up reports.
I myself did one mattress assignment after a grueling week of jam-packed routes making for long days with little rest. I looked tired enough that the sales rep had no doubts that I was a serious customer with real need of a new mattress. I could barely keep my eyes open once I flopped down onto that wonderful bed!
Project Variations: Mattress assignments are straightforward. There’s usually two kinds of basic scenarios. In one, you go in shopping for a specific brand of mattress. In the other, you let the sales representative guide you to the brand that he thinks would work best for you.
Visit & Reporting Requirements: The on-site visit takes around 15 to 20 minutes, depending upon how long you loll about loitering in comfort and repose. The reporting is a bit longer, as it usually requires some narrative about the highlights of the sales presentation. The write-ups can run about 30 to 40 minutes.
Strategies: Be prepared to provide an alias in case the sales representative asks for your name. Additionally, some might want you to give up a phone number so that they can follow up with you. You can handle this best by telling them it’s easier to reach you by email, and give them an email you have set up beforehand specifically for this purpose. This works well for other types of assignments, too.
Note the name of the sales representative as well as his description. Be sure to ask for a business card. This can appear natural if you use it to jot down model names and prices of the mattresses he shows to you.
Don’t lead the sales rep through his presentation. He should initiate the conversation by asking you why you are in the market for a new mattress. You can tell him your present one is so old that it is uncomfortable. Or you can say that you have physical issues to contend with that interfere with your sleep without necessarily being specific. See if he offers up recommendations of certain mattresses for those with bad backs, arthritis, fibromyalgia, or other maladies.
Note what the sales rep has to say about the construction of the mattress, its benefits, how it compares to others, and applicable warranties. Listen to what he tells you about the significant differences in each model. Be sure you are able to describe if and how he attempted to close the sale.
What Others Have to Say: There are a lot of posters on www.mysteryshopforum.com about mattress assignments. There is variation in the work involved on-site and in the report writing among MSCs, so it can be wise to check out the assignment instructions and report before accepting a shop. Some MSCs want a detailed and tedious blow-by-blow story from beginning to end.
Estimated Pay: Pay is typically $20 to $25.
MSCs: One of the mystery shopping companies that conduct evaluations of mattress stores is Marketing Endeavors.