The answer is a resounding yes, you can. In fact, most mystery shopping assignments are performed by shoppers on a part time basis and this is perfect scheduling for stay at home moms, dads, retired or disabled persons.
Mystery shopping can be done by almost any adult over 18 years old. Since businesses can be patronized by almost anyone, a mystery shopper who blends in with the typical shopper at that establishment is definitely an asset.
There are even mystery shops which require customers of a demographic segment, such as race, or children, seniors, or disabled customers.
The goal of mystery shopping is to see how the customer is treated by employees especially if they don't fit the profile of the “typical” customer.
There are some assignments which require you to bring along children for authenticity sake, and if you organize your day and schedule, you can plan to complete the assignment with your well behaved children in tow.
There are also assignments where age requirements must be met, such as the purchase of tobacco products or alcohol, where the purchaser must be of legal age. Many students accept these types of assignments and earn good part time money with age requirement shopping assignments.
Have you ever walked into a retail establishment, or restaurant and the employee took one look at you, or not, and decided that you were not worthy of their best service? For whatever reason?
This is the basis for mystery shopping, which requires that all customers must be treated with dignity and courtesy, regardless of their background. The Mystery shopping tool enhances that commitment to treat all customers fairly and to assist businesses from avoiding bankruptcy through failure to observe and practice legal regulations, loss of customers or even lawsuits.
When you sign up to be an independent contractor with a mystery shopping company, they frequently ask you to identify your ethnicity, age or economic status for this very purpose and some mystery shops require shoppers who have limited financial resources or poor credit report.
There are even companies who specialize in disabled mystery shoppers since the Americans with Disability Association requires that establishments be accessible to disabled patrons and that reasonable accommodations be made for those with disabilities.
Remember, mystery shopping can be a rewarding experience where you get to interact with people from all walks of life. It can be a learning experience, and best of all, you get to make a valuable contribution to improve and enhance the customer service provided in your community.