One of the important aspects of a business growth strategy is competitor research and analysis. Whether you are a start-up or have been in the market for years, knowing about your competitors is a great way to make improvements and find ways to stand out in your industry.
One significant way to do this is through mystery shopping competitors programs. The blog discusses mystery shopping competitors and customer experience programs and how businesses can benefit from them.
What is Competitor Mystery Shopping?
It is a strategy in which mystery shoppers, posing as customers, make cold calls to competitors to objectively gain insights into what their competitor is offering.
Through this strategy, businesses can evaluate the various aspects of their competitors. This may include their customer service, product quality, sales skills, strengths and weaknesses, and overall customer experience.
Businesses can use the insights from mystery shopping to refine their strategy and enhance their competitive edge. For instance, a company may decide to adjust their sales strategy in response to what they’ve learned about their competitors’ sales practices.
How Does The Customer’s Experience Play Into The Process?
Not only does mystery shopping give you valuable insights into your competitors, but it also helps you better understand their customer experience. Knowing what makes customers buy from your competitors is crucial to understanding the improvements you need to make in your services and products.
Customers typically perform brand comparisons before making the final purchase decision. Research shows that 76% of consumers say they would switch to a company’s competitors due to several bad customer service and experiences.
As such, mystery shopping competitors and customer experience solutions are an excellent way for companies to fix issues with their services and improve their customer experience research to step ahead of their competitors.
By offering exceptional customer experience, having extensive product knowledge, and a comparatively better buying experience, you can elevate your reputation and position in your industry.
6 Essential Things To Focus On When Conducting A Mystery Shopping Competitors Program
When conducting a competitor mystery shopping program, businesses should focus on the following aspects:
- Quality and Cost
When shopping, consumers generally focus on the quality and prices of products. When performing competitors’ research through mystery shopping, assess the quality of services or products and your competitors’ pricing strategy and compare it with yours to make improvements.
- Target Market
Determine your competitors’ specific audience and why they reach out to these consumer groups. Understanding their niche market and knowing how it’s connected with yours allows you to create better strategies.
- Customer Engagement
Take note of how your competitors engage their customers and address difficult situations. This will help you understand their values and priorities in offering excellent service and experience to their customers.
- Processes and Procedures
Through mystery shopping, get a glimpse of how your competitors run their daily operations, including order processing, customer service, complaint handling and other processes. This helps you create opportunities for improving your business operations.
- Brand Perception
When mystery shopping, assess how your competitors’ customers perceive their brands – store designs, marketing campaigns, customer services, etc. Doing this lets you see how the company showcases its mission, vision, and culture.
- Floor Layout and Design
The design and layout of your store play a crucial role in driving customers in. Also, the menu board’s design impacts how they engage with your offerings and purchase decisions. That is why they have to be well-planned and strategic.
How To Conduct An Effective Mystery Shopping Competitors Program?
Planning a competitor mystery shopping strategy is important to ensure you achieve the desired goals. Hence, prior to the cold calling process, prepare a list of questions for your competitors to answer. Make sure these questions are specific to your niche or industry.
For instance, if you run a healthcare industry products manufacturing business, and you are mystery shopping with your biggest competitor, you should ask questions about why the products are effective and what makes their healthcare products unique.
Also, before you ask the questions to your competitors, answer them yourself. This will help you get a perspective of your approach, and you will know how it differs from your competitors. Set up a well-thought and realistic scenario similar to the ones your customers approach you with.
How Does The Mystery Shopping Competitors Program Help Businesses?
Here are some ways that mystery shopping can help businesses stand out from their competitors:
- Identify Areas For Improvements
A mystery shopping program helps you see why your competitors are performing well in sales and have a better market reputation. It also helps you identify areas for improvements in customer experience. For instance, if a mystery shopper reports that the staff was not supportive, the business can use this feedback to improve their staff training.
Addressing these issues helps businesses create a better overall experience for their customers and stand out from competitors who may not be as aware of their customer needs.
- Stay Competitive In The Evolving Market
By assessing multiple competitors in their industry, businesses can learn about various innovative and modern practices that they may not be aware of. It keeps them up-to-date with the latest industry trends and marketing techniques that they can incorporate into their own business strategy.
- Build Customer Loyalty
When you work on your customer experience based on your findings of competitor mystery shopping, you can provide a superior customer experience. This allows them to build customer loyalty and set themselves apart from competitors.
Further, it helps them determine ways to create a positive and memorable customer experience, whether through unique product offerings or exceptional customer service. Consistently providing great experience allows businesses to build a loyal customer base that will keep returning.
Competitor mystery shopping is an incredible tool for any business looking to achieve a competitive edge, helping them identify areas for improvements, gain valuable insights and create informed strategies.
To run an effective and successful mystery shopping competitors and customer experience program, hire an unbiased third party, like My CX. We offer customised mystery shopping solutions that fit your specific needs. Our mystery shopping competitors’ programs provide valuable insights into what’s happening within your marketplace using modern methodologies and practices within our industry to develop a plan.
To discuss your mystery shopping goals with us, contact us today!