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Scentsy
Work at Home Mom 
Thursday, February 02 2012

Here is an informative article by Pamela Koleszar that gives a brief look at some things to consider before signing on with a Direct Sales Opportunity:

Are You Considering a Direct Sales Business
by: Pamela Koleszar

Initial Considerations

When thinking of starting your own direct-sales, home-based business, the first consideration is usually the startup cost. That's not the only, nor is it the most important, thing to ponder.

At the point of judging your own fitness or ability to start a business, you have probably been approached by someone who is already selling the product. You are probably a fan of the product. You have probably been told or have thought "The products sell themselves!" Unfortunately, that's just not true of any direct-sales product. If it were, the manufacturer would open a website linked to the warehouse, spend its budget on advertising, and forget about sharing profit with consultants. Selling these products will require you to be a good salesperson, with great marketing skills, the ability to find new customers, and good interpersonal communication. You will likely also have to be a good recruiter, as many organizations offer the best compensation to those who have a team or downline of personally recruited members.

Another problem to weigh heavily is developing your customer base. Is the person recruiting you a friend, family member, co-worker? If so, your potential customers already have a consultant. Who else is there to buy from you? Will you be able to convince any of them to sign up? Or will you present the same customer base problem for them? How often do you truly meet new people?

You may be able to avoid one issue of customer base increase, if the product you choose to sell is consumable. Some direct-sales products are not consumable (kitchen items, jewelry, purses, etc.) and after one order, your customer may not need or want anything else for a while. One key to success in direct sales is repeat business. A consumable product, such as skin care products, food, scrapbooking supplies, and more, will make a subsequent purchase more likely. Do your research and find a product you can believe in that will generate recurring orders monthly (ideally).

There are many direct-sales businesses available today, and each has positive and negative points. The best time to join is at or near business startup, after determining the product is worthwhile. When a business already has multiple established consultants in your area, it will be more difficult for you to make your splash. Some of the available opportunities have websites that will show you how many consultants there are in a particular geographic area, and that may be research you want to undertake before sending in your check.

Additional Research

You should do your own research into any business you want to begin, more than just talking to a recruiting consultant who is seeing dollar signs over your head. Below I have listed important points about a few of the direct-sales businesses that are popular in my area. This is by no means a complete list, nor should you rely on these numbers and information to make your final decision since they are subject to change almost daily.

All of this information was found on openly published websites and is not copyrighted or otherwise protected. Please note that all business names arecopyrighted and may not be utilized for the purpose of sales without prior permission of the company. Companies are listed in random order.

(click column header to sort results)
Business Name  
Product Type  
Startup Cost  
Reorder Requirements 
Recruitment Info  
Commission Rate  
Pampered Chef
Kitchen/food
80 / 159
must order $1250 in first 3 months; $100 in sales / month to remain active
Commissions earned on down-line sales
20-25
Mary Kay
Cosmetics/skin care
100
must order $200 wholesale (specific products) in first month; will remain active for two additional months
Commissions earned on down-line sales; advancement based on recruitment
50
Avon
Cosmetics/skin care/jewelry
10 / 20
must order "MOV" in order to receive discount; varies from $50-100
none
24-32
Scentsy
Wickless candles/warmers
99
must order $150 every three months to remain active
Leadership bonuses - 9%
20-25
lia sophia
Jewelry
149
$250 sales in a quarter to remain active
10% Commissions earned on down-line sales
30-40
Thirty-One
Handbags/gifts
99
$1000 to "qualify"; $200 in a three consecutive month period to remain active
2+% Commissions earned on down-line sales
25
Tastefully Simple
Food
85 / 170
$400 retail (specific products less credits) per quarter to remain active
5% Commissions earned on (first-level) down-line sales
30
Creative Memories
Scrapbooking supplies
50 - 245
$500 retail in a consecutive three month period to remain active
Up to 20% Commissions earned on down-line sales
30-45
Tupperware
Kitchen
80 / 120
$250 personal retail sales within a four-month period to remain active
4-8% Commissions earned on down-line sales
25

Further Resources

For much more detailed information regarding direct sales, and to do your own research, I recommend directsalesmoms.com (link below). This website has profiles of different businesses created by current consultants with links to the company websites.

There are other websites that can provide in-depth comparisons, lists of questions to ask, and more. A quick search can provide more information than you thought was possible. Do not be pressured into making a decision on the spot. Money spent quickly is often spent foolishly.

Posted by: Elena AT 12:14 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
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