MYSTERY shoppers who visited Sheffield’s Castle Market have given gave traders a massive thumbs up.
A team of undercover shoppers visited more than 100 traders, looking at the attractiveness of their stalls, staff knowledge and service and how they closed a sale.
The average rating across the market was 87 per cent – a leap of 11 per cent since the exercise first took place in the summer – with 12 stall holders scoring the maximum 100 per cent.
Businesses have been working with The Source and Sheffield Council since the summer to get the best from their businesses.
Mystery shoppers worked alongside The Source Skills Academy, based near Meadowhall, which also delivered customer service training to traders following the first undercover visit.
The market is aiming to be the first in the UK to be awarded WorldHost Destination Status due to the number of businesses taking part in training, which recognises their commitment to customer service. Thirty-seven have achieved the status.
Sheffield Council leader Julie Dore, who presented the top scoring businesses with certificates, said: “This shows the commitment of the city’s market traders to improving the customer experience.
“We’re determined to have the best markets in the country and we’re working with traders to encourage them to make the most of their businesses.
“What’s particularly rewarding is the overall improvement in customer service considering we’ve been doing this for less than a year.”
Grace Bolsover, who runs Grace’s Fabrics, one of the traders who scored 100 per cent, said: “I’m over the moon.
“This shop is my Marks & Spencer and I want people to feel good about shopping here.
“I’ve told all my customers and they’ve said they wouldn’t expect anything less from me.”