What you need to know before becoming a sales rep
What's It Like Selling Avon Products?
by Dollar Stretcher Contributors
Be Your Own Boss
Multiple Income Streams
What's It Like Selling Avon?
I'm looking to make some extra money. My friend is encouraging me to start selling Avon products. I've always been into make-up and enjoy using their products. But how can I tell whether I'd make any real money by selling Avon?
Keep It All in Perspective
I think this article from Forbes is a good one. But it says the median income is $2400/year. Larry Burkett said that there's nothing wrong with Direct Sales/MLM companies, as long as you don't look at everyone you know/meet as a potential customer or sales rep.
Sharon (via Facebook)
Hard Work Has Its Rewards
Can you make money selling Avon? Sure. But, you have to be careful not to be your own best customer!
Having sold Avon for several years now, I can say that there is money to be made. It's not easy necessarily, as you have to constantly be on the lookout for new customers while keeping your existing customers ordering.
Also, keep in mind that you have to pay a fee with each order (twice monthly, currently a minimum of $5.95). Plus, you have to pay for your books and other supplies. Often your sister reps and managers can help you out with the books and supplies, at least initially, but it's good to plan for these expenses.
Hard work does have its rewards, and Avon is no exception. If you'd like to try it, Avon will connect your with the manager in your area, so you can give it a shot.
Tammy C. in North Carolina
Reconsider Selling Avon
I would have to discourage you from selling Avon. I don't know too much about Avon specifically, but if you are trying to make money, starting out with a cash outlay to Avon for supplies is not the way to go. Do you know anyone who has told you that they use Avon products and love them and wish they had a supplier? Is there a need? Think about it before you make an investment. You might be better off dog-sitting, babysitting, or getting a part-time job in a store. In my experience, any gig that wants you to spend money to make money is not a good idea.
Jen in Rio del Mar, CA
No Money on the Bottom Rung
I sold Avon a few times. It was fun and I figured I wasn't selling enough and that I needed more sales. I increased my sales. It was much easier after they took away territories. I was only a few hundred dollars shy of the Mrs. Albie award. You get that award when you sell $10,000. Yes, I sold a lot. You have to pay taxes on your earnings. Avon graciously sends the information to the government for you. You have to buy your own books and bags for the products. When all was said and done, I earned $500. A year's worth of delivering and following up and I got $500. In summary, no, you will not make money selling Avon, but if you move up and recruit Avon ladies under you, you make money off their sales. You can make money with Avon but not on the bottom rung of the ladder selling Avon.
Find a Job at a Make-Up Counter
Prior to moving, I was one of the top sellers in my West Coast district for Avon. I worked tirelessly at nearly 20 hours per week, spending time encouraging over 100 other women to also sell. When I deducted the cost of catalogs, travel, advertising, buying samples, etc., my extra income totaled less than $150 per month! Avon makes a big deal of getting you excited about all the new products. They encourage you to buy many of them on "sale," so you end up with lots of inventory, etc. Most of the other people in my district weren't making that much and dropped out within a year or so. You could get a part-time job at a make-up counter, working a few hours a week and end up with more money.
You Get Out What You Put In
I've been selling Avon for over 20 years now (that's a lot of lipsticks). It has helped pay for "extras" (dance classes for our daughter, sports things for all three kids, etc.), and throughout the years, I have earned "points" and redeemed them for savings bonds and appliances. You do have to pay for most of your supplies (books, bags, samples and demos). However, they do offer you a free website, representative forum, free online training, etc. There is a minimum you have to sell to make commission (I believe it's $50), and you must not be your own best customer. Like everything else, when it comes to earnings/savings, don't spend more than you make!
Being an Avon rep has enabled me to really help my community, neighbors, and friends by conducting or holding Avon fundraisers. I've done them for several of our high school groups (tracks teams, dance teams, band, etc.), a local preschool, various individuals that have fallen on hard times, etc. As a matter of fact, right now I'm conducting one for the people of Vilonia, AR.
Like any other business, it is what you make of it. To be successful, you have to work, get the word out, pass out the books, bag those orders, etc.
Not Worth the Time and Energy
I used to sell Avon and I can tell you that I did not make any substantial money. I even sat down with a friend of mine who is a salesman. I followed all his ideas for marketing (he even did free marketing for me), and I made $30 to $45 per month extra, after all operating expenses (cost of product, shipping costs, marketing material, etc.). For the time and energy I put into it, I honestly don't feel it was worth it.
She's Enjoyed Selling Avon for 35 Years
I began selling Avon 35 years ago when my youngest was four years old. I needed some extra income but did not want full-time employment since it was my desire to spend time with my children. When I started out, I was given a territory (right in my neighborhood). I was able to take my child with me as I went door to door. I asked if they might be interested and kept notes. If no one was home, I left a brochure with my number. I did acquire several customers (some of whom are still my customers). I also had friends and family take brochures to their offices. I found that I was able to keep my family stocked with everyday products as well as some extra income, but I had to be cautious not to overspend my earnings. It's quite a temptation since I like their products. It takes planning and will power to purchase items your family uses that would cost much more at the store but not spend over what you earn. I have had some very good years and then some not so good years. The economy, people moving away, people losing jobs, etc. all determine my earnings. It really depends on how self-motivated you are to get out and sell. I have enjoyed selling it and have made many new friends in the process.
Take the Next Step:
- No time to take action now? Why not 'Pin it' so you can do it later?
- Visit the TDS library for more on starting a business.
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