Did I join Amway? (my full review)

Amway is the number one direct selling company in the world.

Consistently #1 on Direct Selling News top 100 list, (1) Amway is billions of dollars ahead of other direct selling heavy-hitters like Avon, Herbalife, and Mary Kay.

With 2014 revenue of $10.8 billion dollars, it beats #2 Avon by almost $2 billion.

So have I been involved with Amway?

This video explains:


All good? Let’s continue…


Say what you want about Amway, but figures don’t lie.  Neither do prestige markers like being referred to over and over again in major business publications.

Check out Inc. Magazine‘s online trove of articles and you’ll see evidence of this.

In one article, young entrepreneurs are advised to market their wares using “the Amway Approach” (i.e. direct selling) (2).

If there’s one thing direct marketing in general and MLM in particular want right now, it’s legitimacy.  And they’ve almost got it.   Desperate to be recognized as a valid business model, proponents of direct selling have formed the Direct Selling Association (DSA).  This self-regulatory body serves up industry standards, best practices, and recognition badges via an application system that lets in only the most ethical of companies.

Amway probably does more for the cause than any other company in the DSA.  Direct selling is making inroads into the general population’s sphere of awareness, thanks partly to the continuing success of Amway.

Just what is Amway up to these days?

Perhaps the most surprising number of all, however, is 1959.  That’s when Amway went into business, making it one of the longest-running MLMs in the world (see the top 25 here).

Their nutrition division, Nurtilite, is even older, founded in 1934 (Amway started acquiring Nutrilite in 1972 and took over fully in 1994).

The founders of Amway, Jay Van Andel and Rich DeVos, worked for Nutrilite a full ten years before they founded Amway.  They broke off to form “The American Way” (Amway) because of a dispute Nutrilite was having with the FDA.

Maybe that’s been the key to their success the whole time: fear of stepping outside the bounds of the law and fair practices.

Not that they haven’t had their share of lawsuits, too.  From charges they were spreading rumors that P&G was linked to satanism (3) to pissing off Avon for purchasing too many of its shares (4), Amway is no stranger to the court system.

But so far nothing has stopped Amway, which is currently #26 on Forbes Magazine’s list of Largest Private Companies (5).


With more than 450 exclusive high quality products, Amway features too many brands to list.  Here are a few, so you get an idea of the range of products:

  • Nutrilite (nutrition)
  • Artistry (beauty)
  • eSpring (clean water)
  • B2B products like commercial cleaning products
  • Air purifiers by Atmosphere®, supposedly the world’s #1 brand

A random sampling of products reveals 16 product in the skin facial moisturizer category.  A major trend in that area right now is “safe ingredients” which don’t contain toxins that harm the body.  Full ingredient lists are available, allowing concerned consumers to punch the ingredients into the Cosmetic Database, for example  That’s much more than you can say for many skincare companies, who try to hide their ingredients.

There is no option to search for “safe ingredients” but there are fragrance-free products for sensitive skin, for example.

Pricing could not be considered “budget” pricing but neither are prices too ridiculous.  There is a nice middle ground of retail prices.

Compensation Plan

“Cure for the Common Cubicle”

Nice tagline.

That’s the tagline for the Amway compensation plan, which is billed as low-cost and low-risk.   Since most people know what Amway is, Amway’s marketing tactic is to break down the obstacles that confront young people when they consider becoming an Amway independent distributor.

They present direct selling as a new wave that’s hitting young America (you just haven’t heard of it before), allowing smart, attractive young people to work when they want and where they want so there’s more time for friends.

Get the idea?  Convince someone that direct selling is the way to go, and it’s pretty much a done deal that they’ll choose Amway.  Amway isn’t the decision…direct selling is.

With an impressive 76-page intro brochure for new recruits, they’re out to train you well, too.  Distributors earn three ways:

  1. Retail margins
  2. Monthly Bonuses
  3. Growth Incentives

For the retail margins, you may set your own prices for the products you sell (good luck with raising them above the MSRP, though!).

The monthly Performance Bonus is based on your team sales, and earns you up to 23%.  Your volume will have to be well into the thousands, however, for that rate.  This bonus starts out at a 3% rate for a monthly Personal Volume (PV) of 100-299.

Growth incentives include 25% performance bonus if you sponsor someone who makes it into the big-player levels by selling tons of product.  Of course the more you continue this, the higher the rewards go.

There is a 100% money-back guarantee in the first 90 days in business.

  • Product Kit ($83.99)  This contains full-size product samples worth $160 retail plus samples and brochures and tools for selling.
  • Welcome Kit ($62).  Considered a registration fee, this is 100% refundable if you change your mind.  Contains start guide, product brochures, training resources, and details on the bonus program.

IBOs may earn additional Personal Volume by shopping at Amway’s partner stores through the Amway portal.  These include big names like The Home Depot, Microsoft, and Macy’s.


There are over 3 million Amway IBOs (Independent Business Owners).

However, as Amway puts it, there’s still plenty of territory out there for newcomers.  Citing stats from their books, Amway pulls a first for direct selling companies and publishes the average monthly income for their IBOs: $183.  They also state that around 53% of their IBOs are active status.  Those are both pretty good figures for this industry.

As you can see, you still have a chance to get in on the world’s biggest MLM of all time.

But does that mean it’s the best way to kill your day job and work from home?

Look, it’s a great company. I mean, they are the originator. Simple compensation plan, too.

But here is the thing that most people don’t understand…

…the whole you get 3, and then they find 3, and they find three is so 1990s.

It just rarely works anymore, which is why MLM success rates are laughable.

It’s not Amway’s fault, more of an industry plague.

In other words, I decided to pass on Amway even though I run one of the biggest network marketing blogs on the internet.

You might like our training because it teaches the “good life” without telling your friends you’re in this new thing called Amway.

See our top 22 small business ideas of 2017

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Jeremy Page

Jeremy Page created Multiple Streams for ballers, big thinkers and online business owners. You can follow him on Instagram here.

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