Every month, Diamond Comics sends in secret shoppers to try and buy unreleased comics. They're given a sort of script, and instructions on where to take pictures with their phones.
And every month the people who do it are slightly stupider than the previous month.
I usually spot them taking pictures of the window before they come in. As I did today.
Me, as the secret shopper entered: "Hi. How are you today? Can I help you find anything?"
This week's Guy Trying To Make A Buck At The Expense Of Retailers: "Wow. Your store is small."
GTTMABATEOR: "Do you sell new comics?"
Me: "Of course. Are you looking for anything in particular?"
GTTMABATEOR: "Um. Let me. Uh. Yes. But. Hold on."
He goes into the corner and scrolls through his phone.
GTTMABATEOR: "Do you have Detective Comics #1006?"
Me: "Unfortunately, that doesn't come out until tomorrow."
GTTMABATEOR: "It doesn't? Oh. Oh no. Um. What about Action Comics #1012?"
Me: "That also doesn't come out until tomorrow. Is there anything else you're looking for?"
GTTMABATEOR: "Yea. Um. Hold on. Let me."
Walks back into corner to scroll through his phone.
GTTMABATEOR: "Do you have a TV for customers to watch?"
GTTMABATEOR: "So, if I wanted to watch. Like. Ok. Marvel or DC movies. Where are they?"
Me: "Movie theaters. You can probably buy the DVDs at Wal-Mart, or just stream them on Netflix. We don't sell DVDs here, though."
GTTMABATEOR: "Ok, um."
Corner. Phone. Scroll.
GTTMABATEOR: "After DC and Marvel, what would you say is the biggest comic book company?"
That's a new question.
Me: "Image Comics actually sells better here than DC or Marvel."
GTTMABATEOR: "Like Spawn?"
Me: "No. We haven't sold an issue of Spawn in nearly a decade. But Saga by Brian K Vaughan, and Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman are just a couple of our huge sellers from Image Comics."
GTTMABATEOR: "Ok. What's your name?"
GTTMABATEOR: "And how tall would you say you are?"
Me: "I would say I am 5'4"." (I'd be fucken lying, but that's what I'd say if you asked me. I really hope he includes that in his report.)
GTTMABATEOR: "Ok. I'll be back."
Me: "Great! Have a wonderful day."
That secret shopper who came in last week just filed his report:
Were the store hours posted, or did you have to inquire about them? Posted (Truth!)
"GENERAL INFORMATION" COMMENTS ABOUT THE LOCATION:
The exterior of the building was clean. There was no debris anywhere on the floor. The exterior showed the building sign from the window. There was no debris anywhere on the ground at the store front. (Guess who happened to vacuum that day.)
1. Were you greeted when you entered the location? Yes
1a. If YES, please specify what was said. The employee said hello to me. (I said "Welcome." actually.)
1b. Please specify how long it took to be greeted (from the time you entered the location). 0-10 seconds (Damn right.)
2. Was it easy to figure out where the new releases for the week are located? No (it's only the entire back wall of the store.)
3. Please specify the titles of the comic books you were to find. Detective Comics #1006, Action Comics # 1012
5. Were these specific title(s) and issue(s) available on the shelves? No (NOPE!)
5a. If NO, was an employee able to find a copy for you? No (because they weren't yet available for sale)
5B. PLEASE SPECIFY WHAT THE EMPLOYEE SAID.
The employee told me that they were not in but would be in the next day. (Yep.)
6. If applicable, please specify where it was located. N/A: It was unavailable (Yeup.)
7. Was the employee who assisted you friendly? Yes (Poisonously so.)
8. Was the employee who assisted you helpful and focused on you? Yes
...Name: Adam (Yep)
...Sex: Male (Yep.)
...Height range: 5'8" (Hahahahaha, Halfway between the truth and the lie that I told him.)
...Age range: 40's (Yep.)
...Other distinguishing characteristics: N/A
9. Did the employee wear a uniform or a name tag? Neither (Correct.)
12. Were you thanked and/or given a sincere parting comment? Yes. As I left out of the store, I was given a parting remark from the employee. I was not thanked. (Thanked for what? He didn't buy anything. I told him to have A Wonderful Week.)
DESCRIPTION OF THE STORE LAYOUT:
This store was compact. It was closed and the displays were spaced in but you could still walk around the store. There were no TVs, gaming tables, but had the POS system near the entrance or exit area. I had to really find the new comic area. (IT'S AN ENTIRE WALL OF THE STORE.)
I did not identify as a secret shopper by the employee and I did not feel like he knew what I was up to. I would still recommend to people I know because it was loaded with comic books. The employee was helping when I needed help (Sorry, dude. I smelled your secret shopperness a mile off. You took over two minutes taking pictures of the front of the store.)