Mystery shopping measures operational excellence. That includes a wide gamut of behaviors ranging from the effectiveness of sales associates in presenting products and asking for the close to a cashier’s ability to run a checkout line effectively. It’s a great tool for observing behaviors within a location and determining whether the brand promise is being executed. But how do you know if those standards are effective?

You’ll want to match performance against brand standards to other metrics, particularly customer satisfaction or loyalty metrics and the number of negative contacts (calls, social media posts, etc.) at the location level. Take a look at the data you have for measuring operational excellence. (That typically comes from mystery shops or audits.) Create a baseline showing low to high performers. Then chart against that your top KPI’s for loyalty or satisfaction (e.g., Net Promoter Score or top box satisfaction). You should see that as performance on brand standards increases, so do your loyalty metrics. Then add another item: The number of negative contacts coming into your call center or negative posts from social media. You should see that as performance on brand standards increases, the number of negative contacts decreases. And remember, managing negative experiences costs your business, so decreasing them immediately returns dollars to your bottom line.

If you do not see that relationship, you may not have designed the right brand standards. That means you are spending your precious training dollars on the wrong things because you’re not picking up on what matters to customers. A final tip: Your chart should show a sharp increase in customer loyalty and satisfaction metrics as performance on brand standards increases. If the line looks flat, you need to set the bar higher for your operational standards.
A sample graph can be seen on our Technology page under “Unique insights for combined data.” Check it out, and of course, we’re happy to discuss how to integrate your metrics so you can draw some meaningful conclusions and act.