Work From Home Guide: Work At Home Jobs

Mystery Shopping

The Ads:

Mystery Shopping Guide: We show you how to Become a Mystery Shopper.

Get paid to shop & eat PLUS get free stuff!

Get Paid To Be A Mystery Shopper: Earn $10 - $40 an hour helping businesses improve their customer service!

How it is Supposed to Work:

There are a lot of varieties of this job. Basically, you are paid to do things such as shop, dining out, driving your car, and going to movies. They say they will pay you to help test "customer relations" of the store's staff. The ads for "mystery shoppers" and "secret shoppers" promise easy money plus free meals and merchandise.

The Reality:

Believe it or not, there really are mystery shoppers out there. WAIT! Don't get out your credit card just yet. It is not easy to get a job with a reputable mystery shopping firm. That's right, firm--as in company. Most of these jobs are managed by agencies. Rather than charging you a fee, they are going to treat you as an applicant and see if you're qualified. Expect to be tested on your spelling and grammar as well as your observational skills. Also, they do not require your credit card or bank information.

If you're really interested in becoming a mystery shopper, I would recommend you check out the Mystery Shopping Providers Association. They have several informative articles on how to be a mystery shopper and a very nice (and free) forum. You can also check out my list of legitimate mystery shopping companies.

More Information:

Still not sure they are scams? Check out these links for more information. Note, these are not links to "legitimate" companies. These are links to articles by the BBB, FTC and other organizations exposing the frauds.

Work-at-Home Schemes

FTC Names Its Dirty Dozen:12 Scams Most Likely to Arrive Via Bulk Email

USPS's Work-at-Home Schemes

Work At Home -- Find Out How to Separate the Scams From the Legitimate

Work-at-Home Schemes: Modern Twist to Old Scams

Work-At-Home-Schemes Now Peddled On-Line

Better Business Bureau Warns Consumers of Three Work-at-Home Companies Based in State of Oregon