Skip to main content
Secret Shopping as User Experience Assessment Tool
Public Services Quarterly (2015)
  • Crystal Boyce, Illinois Wesleyan University
Secret shopping is a form of unobtrusive evaluation that can be accomplished with minimal effort, but still produce rich results. With as few as 11 shoppers, the author was able to identify trends in user satisfaction with services provided across two entry-level desks at Illinois Wesleyan University's The Ames Library. The focus of this secret shopping program was on user experiences rather than whether correct answers were given by student employees working at the desks. Overall, users were satisfied or very satisfied with their experiences, though user feedback identified one desk as providing consistently better service.

A poster presentation of this work was presented at the American Library Association's Annual Conference and can be viewed at
Publication Date
November, 2015
Citation Information
Crystal Boyce. "Secret Shopping as User Experience Assessment Tool" Public Services Quarterly Vol. 11 Iss. 4 (2015)
Available at:
Creative Commons license
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons CC_BY-NC-SA International License.