The Truth About Avon

Well, I was just looking though my Yahoo groups emails, and I saw these poor Avon “hopefuls” advertising their biz for sales and recruiting. So I just had to Speak On It. {Special Note: I will use many exclamation points in this review. It is not a sign of yelling, but I’m merely being sarcastic.}

The Great Things About Avon
*It is a branded company
Companies that people already know about tend to do better because the general public feel that they are legitimate. So that works to the reps advantage.

*The products are good
People trust the products and have stood the test of time. Heck, our grandmothers used Avon! And the shoes are dynamic- not cheap- but really comfortable. Also, Avon’s makeup is ahead of technology. You can pick up a copy of the “Beauty Bible”, Allure magazine, and see the very trends of Avon right on the pages, not to mention their ads.

*Low Start Up Costs
It’s on $10 to join Avon. That is the cheapest start up for a legitimate direct sales company (not affiliate programs who usually have free start ups also) in the industry.

Those are just a few positive things that I noted with Avon. But, as my grandmothers says, “Everything that shines ain’t gold!” So here is the downside of Avon.

The Truth About Avon
*Commission structure
You’re going to love selling Avon your first 4 campaigns of business because you get 50% off commission on all of the “core” products, meaning the skin care, make up, body care, fragrances, and some jewelry. But, at all times, you make only 20% on the children’s items, clothing, other jewelry, shoes, purses and other non core items. These items are usually priced higher and people love to buy them, but you don’t make hardly anything on these items. And they try to teach you strategies on how to increase core product sales, and people still end up buying what they want to buy which is usually the 20% items.

After the first 4 campaigns, the commission goes on a tier structure. So, in order to earn 50% again on the core items, you need to sell almost $1600 per campaign! That’s a lot of Avon! This can be a pain in the butt because these are individual deliveries-not a party delivery. And did I mention that the campaigns are every 2 weeks? so that means that you would need to sell $3,200 for the month to get 50% commission for the month. So that’s why some reps are satisfied with $425 per campaign in order to get 40%

But, even if you meet the required sales for 40% or even 50%, backorders or sold out products can drop you down the scale. Therefore, if you would have had 50%, you’ll drop down to 40% because some items were missing or on backorder. One of my Avon friends stated to me that she felt the company does that on purpose because she makes her 50% every campaign, but because of missing items, her commissions drops each time. That’s her experience, so I can’t say whether the company does that deliberately or not.

*Representives Leave Out Just as Fast as they Come In
The sponsoring program is designed to sponsor people quickly and at a great price. The problem with this is the fact that you end up with people on your team that quickly become disappointed once they receive their first invoice. Also, you may receive annoying emails from a district manager begging for reps to sign up more people to meet the district’s requirements. This drives many reps to desperately sign up people who never plans to do anything with the business-they just serve to fill a quota. This presents a problem because it breed negative energy which is the last thing you need in direct sales. I heard a network marketing seminar once, and the speaker made the statement, “the compensation plan, drives the behavior of the consultants.” In other words, desperate means cause for desperate measures. And that’s almost always the case in Avon’s leadership program.

Oh, and did I mention that there is NO online recruiting unless you’re in a “test” district? (A test district is a district in a certain geograpical location that Avon has allowed to do online recruiting just to see how it’s going to work for the company). It’s suppose to be only face-to-face recruiting, and if a rep that’s not in a test district is caught recruiting online, she can lose her leadership status.

Uh, I don’t think so! Come into the 21st century, why don’t ya? Everybody’s online recruiting!

*Read the Fine Print
When you receive your invoice, you will see a processing fee, customer fees, and you need to order catalogs and leaflets, not to mention samples and other supplies. I had the personal experience of collecting $300 in sales on all 20% items, and I had to take out all of these fees, order catalogs, and ordered some demonstration products, and I made negative $15 . So, I was actually in the hole! Well, when the reps that you sponsor experience this a few times, you can’t honestly expect them to stay, can you?

*Avon never gives you a break.
If you happen to get sick one campaign, you get behind if you don’t place an order. This is very annoying! Sometimes, I don’t feel like doing Avon; can I have a life, please! I was truly upset when I almost lost my life in a car accident and was injured and is still in physical therapy, and my uplines are asking me when I’m going to place my next order. In between pain pills and doctor’s visits, I’ll let you know.

So, that was it for me; I now sell Avon just to a few friends and family and to order things for myself. I no longer burn all of my gas, run up my phone bill, or demean myself by acting desperately to keep my leadership status. Now I enjoy what I do with my new company. The owner of this DSA member company called ME and asked ME to help launch the US division of her company. In all fairness to Avon and as an ethical business person, I will not post the name of the company. But, since this company is a MDSA client now, you can visit my direct selling PR and resource network and read about it members. Finally, someone recognizes my work and appreciates it.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. hmaewalker
    Jan 21, 2009 @ 18:10:11

    I like your thoughts. Many folks who do Avon lack the planning ability to fidure out what they want their costs to be in accordance to what they expect to make. Also, many do not take into the account that even though the initial start up is low unless you already have customers lined up you will still need seed money that you are willing to spend to build a decent customer base. I differ with the idea of leadership. I prefer to only bring in people that I think will stick eith it or are doing it for their own family & friend discount. That way there is no dillusions of riches immediately. It is not that one can not work for that but focusing on the quality of a recruit will bring you the best success in that respect.

    I hope you continue to do well an if you ever stop being an Avon Lady because it is too much hassle please consider buying from my website.

    I will always supply you with a free shipping code. Just shoot me an email and ask.


  2. Handbagsandperfumes (@handbagsperfume)
    Apr 17, 2012 @ 10:17:10

    we are always looking for reps-


  3. Mom
    Feb 13, 2013 @ 13:43:46

    I am a new avon rep, struggling because I want to buy all the demos, but won’t allow myself to do it. The demos are much more aggressively marketed than the products for customers.

    Plus, the makeup feels like concrete on my face and the Anew caused an allergic reaction. The perfume is terrible and gives me headaches.

    I’ve stuck $200 into this and already want to quit.


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