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MSPA MADRID 2004 Riding the Tiger: Advances in Mystery Shopping Technology Tony Felos and MSPA MADRID 2004 Riding the Tiger: Advances in Mystery Shopping Technology Tony Felos and John Hsu Managing Partners, Surf. Merchants LLC MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 1 N

I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? II. What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? III. What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? IV. From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 2 N

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? a) COMPREHENSIVE FEATURE SET Mystery Shopping systems need an unusually wide range of functionality SURVEYS SHOPPERS SCORING SCHEDULERS REVIEWERS REPORTS CLIENTS PAYMENTS/BILLING MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 3 N

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? a)COMPREHENSIVE FEATURE SET b) ABILITY TO OVERCOME A LACK OF c) STANDARD METHODOLOGY: Every mystery shopping company does things differently. Developers have to guess how to build systems. Example: Even the basic terminology is different: -> Shop, Report, Evaluation, Job, Visit, Assessment ? -> Reviewer, Editor, Proofreader ? Successful systems devise an interface that works for a majority of clients MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 4

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? a) b) COMPREHENSIVE FEATURE SET ABILITY TO OVERCOME A LACK OF STANDARD METHODOLOGY: c) SUFFICIENT FLEXIBILITY TO MEET CLIENT DEMAND: d) Mystery Shopping Clients are usually larger than MSP’s and have unusual leverage in demanding customizations. MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 5

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? c) SUFFICIENT FLEXIBILITY TO MEET CLIENT DEMAND Vendor / Client relationship examples : Microsoft : New Versions of Windows Mc. Donalds: New Fries TALL, GRANDE and VENTI ? Starbucks - can impose terminology upon customers MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 6

Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? c) SUFFICIENT FLEXIBILITY TO MEET CLIENT DEMAND In mystery shopping, many clients: • Are larger than MSPs. • Want to replicate their previous systems • Will not hesitate to ask for customizations In flexible systems, most customizations are both possible and affordable. MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 7

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? a) b) c) COMPREHENSIVE FEATURE SET ABILITY TO OVERCOME A LACK OF STANDARD METHODOLOGY/BEST PRACTICES SUFFICIENT FLEXIBILITY TO MEET CLIENT DEMAND d) SCALABILITY e) System performance must be sustainable under high shop volumes MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 8

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? d) SCALABILITY Easy to build low volume systems, hard to build high volume systems Very difficult to test for high volume performance (hard to simulate thousands of simultaneous users doing different tasks) Successful systems allow MSPs to increase shop volumes without limitations or uncertainty MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 9

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? a) b) c) d) COMPREHENSIVE FEATURE SET ABILITY TO OVERCOME A LACK OF STANDARD METHODOLOGY/BEST PRACTICES SUFFICIENT FLEXIBILITY TO MEET CLIENT DEMAND SCALABILITY e) RAPID AND CONSTANT EVOLUTION f) Systems must stay current and competitive in an industry still undergoing constant change MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 10

I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I) Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? e) RAPID AND CONSTANT EVOLUTION WORD PROCESSING SOFTWARE: MYSTERY SHOPPING SOFTWARE: • Mature industry (word processing around for 25+ years) • Young industry (6 years ? ? ? ) • Word processing has well defined requirements, industry accepted interfaces • Today’s version will still be usable and competitive for 3 -5 years • Mystery shopping has constantly growing requirements, no industry accepted interfaces • Today’s version MAY be competitive for 1 or 2 years. • Constant investment required ! MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 11 N

I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? II. What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? III. What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? IV. From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 12

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? SCHEDULING NON AUTOMATED SYSTEM scheduling 1000 locations in 50 states Search for Shoppers 1 search per state ______ 50 searches Contact Shopper Return Messages Send Forms & Instructions Avg 2. 5 calls per location to find shopper Avg 1 return call to shoppers who didn’t get shop 100 shop packages delivered by email, fax or mail ______ 2500 calls ______ 1000 packages MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 13

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? SCHEDULING AUTOMATED SYSTEM scheduling 1000 locations in 50 states Search for Shoppers Assign Shops Send Forms & Instructions Contact Shoppers Apply System executes searches simultaneously System sends email to all shoppers near any location Shoppers apply for shops Scheduler Shoppers pick assigns shop up form and to best shopper. instructions on the web site System autosends rejections to others ____ 1 search ________ 0 1 batch of emails scheduler tasks _______ 1000 assigns 1 package 0 return calls uploaded to web MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 14

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over nonautomated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over nonautomated or non-web based mystery shopping ? SCHEDULING Comparison: scheduling 1000 locations in 10 states Non automated system: 50 searches 2500 calls 1000 calls Automated system: 1 search 1 batch of emails 4550 tasks 1000 packages 1003 tasks 1000 assigns 0 return calls 1 package uploaded to web MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 15

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? DATA COLLECTION & CORRECTION NON AUTOMATED SYSTEM : 1000 shops a month DATA ENTRY Shopper calls, emails or faxes survey. Data Entry enters shop into database ______ 1000 data entry tasks Validations Proofreader checks that answers are valid, none missing ______ 1000 validation tasks Proofreading Proofreaders check for content , spelling and grammar problems ______ 1000 proofing tasks Shop Corrections 20% of shops require more info from shopper or major corrections by proofreader ______ 200 shop resubmissions MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 16

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? DATA COLLECTION & CORRECTION AUTOMATED SYSTEM : 1000 shops a month DATA ENTRY Shopper submits survey directly into database (shopper can spellcheck on web) ______ 0 data entry tasks Validations Proofreading System checks that answers are valid, none missing Proofreaders check for content , spelling and grammar problems ______ 0 validation tasks ______ 1000 proofing tasks Shop Corrections 5% of shops require more info from shopper or major corrections by proofreader ______ 50 shop resubmissions MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 17

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over nonautomated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over nonautomated or non-web based mystery shopping ? DATA COLLECTION & CORRECTION COMPARISON : 1000 shops a month NON AUTOMATED SYSTEM: 3200 tasks 1000 data entry tasks 1000 validation tasks 1000 proofing tasks 200 shop resubmissions AUTOMATED SYSTEM: 1050 tasks 0 data entry tasks 0 validation tasks 1000 proofing tasks 50 shop resubmissions MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 18

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? REPORTING NON AUTOMATED: 1000 shops, 300 stores, 30 regions 1000 shop reports for store mgrs. 1000 shop reports for regional mgrs. 300 location monthly reports for store mgrs. 300 location monthly reports for regional mgrs. 30 regional monthly reports for regional mgrs. 30 Year to Date regional reports for regional mgrs. _____________________ 2660 reports to calculate 2660 reports to publish (on paper, CD, fax, email) 3 -7 days to wait for data to be received by client MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 19

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? REPORTING AUTOMATED SYSTEM 1 shop report (on web) • Store and Regional Mgrs view shop reports for stores under their management. 1 selectable date range report (on web) • Store and Regional Mgrs generate monthly reports (for stores under their mgt. ) • Regional Managers generate YTD reports for their region _____________________ 2 reports to load onto the web 0 reports to publish (on paper, CD, fax, email) 0 days to wait for data to be received MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 20

II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated II) What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? Overall effect is to increase: 1) Efficiency 2) Quality/Accuracy 3) Capacity 4) Potential client base …. without large additions to workforce and payroll. MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 21 N

I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? II. What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? III. What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? BIG DISCLAIMER FOR WHAT YOU ARE ABOUT TO SEE ! MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 22 N

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 1 - Multiple Scheduling Methods a) Scheduler Assign • Shoppers apply • Scheduler selects best applicant b) Self Assign (First Come, First Serve) • Often sacrifices quality of shopper c) Hybrid : Scheduler Assign and Qualified Self Assign based on • MSPA shopper certifications • Shopper Rating • # shops completed d) Circuit (shopper is assigned a group of shops) MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 23

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 2 - Shopper “Helper” Applications a) Reminder Systems Emails reminders 1 day and 3 days before shop b) Assignment Confirmation Shoppers must acknowledge that they have received assignments or risk losing shop MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 24 N

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 3 - Web Free Surveys a) Long Forms & Multiple Page Forms b) Multiple day & travel shops c) Audit / Inventory d) Direct customer surveys MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 25

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 3 - Web Free Surveys PDA (Palm) Desktop (Laptop) Cell Phone MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 26

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 3 - Web Free Surveys Slow and costly development model PDA survey Desktop survey Cell Phone survey Form Specifications Web Interpreter PDA (Palm) Desktop (Laptop) Cell Phone Web Forms MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 27

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 3 - Web Free Surveys Rapid development model Form Specifications Java Application PDA (Palm) Desktop (Laptop) Web Interpreter Cell Phone Web Forms MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 28

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 4 - Flexible Forms TYPICAL Web Form (one row per question) Bad Boys CD Matrix CD LOTR CD X Men CD Bad Boys VHS Matrix VHS LOTR VHS etc. . . . $ $ $ $ Grid / Table style form (better for audit/inventory) Bad Matrix Boys CD VHS DVD PSII LOTR X Men $ $ $ $ MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 29

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 4 - Flexible Forms Standard Layout Example MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 30

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 4 - Flexible Forms Custom Layout Example MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 31 N

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 5 - Dynamic Forms • One form that automatically changes depending on the situation • Better than multiple forms (cleaner reporting of combined results) MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 32

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 5 - Dynamic Forms Form changes according to DATE Jan Form Feb Form Jan Report Feb Report Constant Jan-Feb Report Constant 400 answers Rate the ice cream 200 shops Rate the donuts 200 shops Rate the ice cream Rate the donuts Rate the 200 ice cream answers Rate the donuts 200 answers MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 33

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 5 - Dynamic Forms Form changes according to LOCATION Economy Constant Standard Deluxe Report Constant Pool Health club 200 shops 100 shops 350 answers 100 answers 50 shops 50 answers MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 34

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 6 - Multi-service Capabilities Correlate mystery shopping with the following marketing/sales data): • Direct Customer Feedback • Customer traffic • Sales Figures • Training effectiveness MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 35

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 7 - Shopper Testing and Qualification MSPA testing · MSP level shopper testing MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 36 N

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 8 - ICR (interactive Computer Response) vs. IVR (Interactive Voice Response) Instead of giving phone number to take survey, give a web address for: ·Electronic Comment Cards ·Polling ·Customer Satisfaction Surveys Like IVR, ICR can: ·Be printed on receipts, coupons, menus, literature ·Include back-end incentives (Gift certificates in PDF format) MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 37 N

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 9 - Data Delivery Methods a) Web Reports b) Excel Reports c) Data Dumps d) PDF Distribution • Email the link to download PDFs from the web • Email PDFs directly to the client MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 38 N

III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery III) What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? 10 - Niche Specialists · Mystery Shopping Specialists in certain industries i. e. “The world’s expert in mystery shopping for BEER !? !!? ? ” · MSP owners usually former workers in their specialty · Excel in form and report design for their specialty · More of a consultant than a vendor relationship · Can usually charge higher shop fees MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 39

I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the I. Why is mystery shopping technology so difficult to develop and what are the characteristics of successful systems? II. What are the key advantages of automated web based mystery shopping over non-automated or non-web based mystery shopping ? III. What do we see as the top emerging technologies and trends in mystery shopping ? IV. From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 40

IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? 1 - Internet Usage ©Copyright 2004, www. Internet. World. Stats. com. All rights reserved. http: //www. internetworldstats. com/s tats 4. htm MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 41 N

IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? 2 - Differences in many parameters Units • currency • weight • height Demographics • race / nationality • education • marital status Geographics • Phone area code • Postal code • State/Province/Territory • Country Time/Date • 12 or 24 hour time • Month/Day/Year or Day/Month/Year These differences require a system that can automatically switch to accommodate these different parameters. MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 42

IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? 3 - Alliances instead of acquisitions Reasons • More multinational clients in Europe • Many MSPs are part of a larger company (usually marketing research company) • More difficult to acquire and operate companies across national borders Demands on technology • Again, system must be able to automatically handle parameter differences in countries • Collaborative modes (allowing sharing of resources like shoppers) MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 43

IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? 4 - Multilingual Issues Different levels of Multilingual systems (Which users need a system in their native language ? ) A. Multilingual surveys B. Multilingual shopper interfaces C. Multilingual client interface and reports D. Multilingual interface for MSP staff MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 44

IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American IV) From a technology perspective, how is European mystery shopping different from North American mystery shopping ? 4 - Multilingual Issues : Different Development models Multiple Parallel Systems One Dynamic System F G S French German Spanish F G S F F F G S G S French Library German Library Spanish Library • Faster to set up initially (translations, no logic) • More complex set up initially (logical switching) • Harder to add languages • Easy to add language libraries • Each system must be updated individually • Only one system to update MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 45 N

FINAL THOUGHT: The Limits of Technology YOUR TECHNOLOGY IS NOT YOUR COMPANY MSPA Madrid FINAL THOUGHT: The Limits of Technology YOUR TECHNOLOGY IS NOT YOUR COMPANY MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 46 N

This presentation will be available at For more information, please email Surf. Merchants at This presentation will be available at For more information, please email Surf. Merchants at [email protected] com MSPA Madrid 2004: Riding the Tiger 47