Amway is an internationally recognized company that has operated successfully for more than 60 years. Amway uses a multilevel marketing (MLM) structure that allows individuals to run their own business with support from the corporate office and other experienced distributors.
Amway Products and Services
Amway currently offers more than 450 products for nutrition, beauty, personal care and home care. The company's website provides detailed information on each of the items available in the Amway product line.
Amway products are not available in stores. The business model created in 1959 by founders Richard DeVos and Jay VanAndel is based on personalized customer service. Amway believes business owners are well-positioned to make product recommendations to customers and build repeat business.
Become an Independent Business Owner
Become an Amway distributor and you're known by the company as an independent business owner (IBO). Within company guidelines, you're free to operate your business as you choose, such as setting your own hours and deciding on your own marketing territory. You can work on your own or involve family members in your business.
Sell Through Your Website
Amway cannot be sold in any brick-and-mortar retail establishment, but distributors are allowed to create their own websites and sell Amway online. Selling this way allows you to expand your customer base beyond family and friends. It's also a way that busy customers can order new products and reorder favorites at their convenience.
Can You Sell Through Amazon?
No. Although Amway allows IBOs to sell its products through their own websites, you can't sell anything from the Amway product line on a commercial site such as Amazon, Etsy or other retailers.
Earn Money Three Ways
Amway's IBOs earn money in three ways. There is a retail margin on every product sold, meaning you keep the difference between your cost for a product and the price customers pay. Amway also pays bonuses as you grow your business. The company also offers rewards for reaching certain milestones.
Is Full-Time Income Possible?
Amway positions itself as a company that offers an opportunity for a "part-time side gig". In other words, don't plan on quitting your day job, at least initially. Amway reports that thousands of distributors worldwide do earn the equivalent of full-time income. With a multilevel marketing business such as Amway, your earnings depend on your own sales and the sales of the distributors you have sponsored.
Cost to Get Started
Amway charges an annual $100 registration fee, which entitles you to call yourself an Amway IBO, purchase products at cost for resale and take advantage of free training opportunities. You can get a full refund of the registration fee within 90 days if you're not satisfied for any reason.
To register, you must be at least 18 years and have the sponsorship of another Amway business owner. You will be asked to provide the sponsor's Amway ID number on your registration form. Amway company information, including the registration form, can be found on Amway's global website.
Amway does not require you to stock any inventory, although some IBOs choose to do so. Amway promises an efficient delivery system that will get products to its distributors quickly, so they can get those products in the hands of customers in a timely manner.
Pros and Cons of Amway
As is true with any business startup, you have to work hard to make money as an Amway IBO. With Amway, you have a recognized company name. Many people are already familiar with Amway products and services. But it's up to you to develop effective strategies for reaching customers and developing your clientele. You need to put in the effort to reap rewards and, like any entrepreneur, success is a risk, no matter how hard you work.
Talk with Other IBOs
If possible, talk with as many Amway distributors as you can. Don't just limit yourself to potential sponsors and individuals who've had success as IBOs. If you can, speak with people who sold Amway but left the business. Learning about problems and pitfalls can help you avoid some of those missteps if you decide to become an Amway distributor.
Denise Dayton, M.S., M.Ed. is a freelance writer specializing in careers, education and technology. In addition to writing for corporate clients, she has published articles in Library Journal and The Searcher.