What Does My Score Mean?

Introduction to Mystery Shopping Scoring

As you kick off your mystery shopping/quality assurance program, please keep in mind these best practices.

The Survey

The measurement instrument (aka survey) is composed of a combination of your brand standards, guest expectations and other important content as directed by your team.


Don’t fixate on overall score. You won’t know what a 95% or a 75% score means until your results are compared to the entire company. Don’t get stuck on the numeric percentage score—look at the questions you missed and focus on fixing them in future visits.

Missed Questions

The questions you miss are your action items.  Review these and take the opportunity to engage staff and correct these behaviors through coaching and reinforcement.

The best performing restaurants readily admit they aren’t perfect, but they generally don’t miss the same standards over and over.


Your overall rank in the company after 3-4 evaluations will be the most compelling rallying cry for your team. Refer to the missed questions as your roadmap to improving rank.

Celebrate Wins

Be proud of the team when they succeed and share that with the other staff.  One of the keystones to improvement is when a team sees their peers and coworkers succeeding.

Identify the team “superstars” and do something special when they succeed. The effects will be contagious.

Establish real-world best practices. See something awesome in your report? Make it part of your restaurant’s culture and training.

Mystery Shop as a Tool

If you shout out how great your 95% was, what happens if you get a 75% the next time? The restaurant did not go from great to bad, did it? Concentrate on the components and behaviors that drive scoring and specifically address those items.

© 2023 Coyle Hospitality Group. Reproduction of any material without written authorization is strictly prohibited.

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