Sunday, November 15, 2015

Working From Home With Avon - Review

How I got into it...

When my son was a baby, we were out walking when I was approached by a very very chatty old lady. It turned out this lady was an Avon Team Leader (and a pretty good business woman) and after a few persuasive words I had signed up for a meeting to become an Avon representative. It's something I had thought about before, but not enough to actually take that step and sign up.

A week or so later, the same lady visited my house armed with catalogues, a few small Freebie's for signing up and buckets of advice and encouragement. That was it, I was now an Avon rep. I thought I would share my experience and review the process and 'job' for anyone that may be interested in starting up a little Avon empire for themselves.

Getting Started...

I was given everything I needed to get started and there was no start up fee like some work from home businesses, definitely a positive. I started off by going door to door in my selected area which contained three streets to start with. I really didn't enjoy the door to door process, mainly because I hate people coming to my own door, so didn't want to be that person. I knew that this initial door knocking would be the worst part, then it would be a case of knowing who was interested and who wasn't. I had mixed responses, nobody was unpleasant which surprised me given the area, a few were interested - great, and two were a little creepy. No I would not like to go for a 'drink some time to show you (very old man) the catalogue'! 

I also shared my new venture on Facebook, where I had quite a few interested in ordering. At the time, you had to send an order for £80 in order to qualify for free postage, also anything over £80 and you got to keep 20% of the money collected. This seemed pretty unachievable, but actually people love Avon and buy pretty regularly, so I never once failed to go over this. I kept my audience pretty small and instead of having the money, I treated myself to free products and goodies as my payment, as a new mum this was heavenly!
Nail Selection Box
I quite enjoyed sorting the orders into bags and doing the admin side of things. You do have to buy your catalogues and bags etc, but they are very cheap and you soon find a system that works, with things like rotating catalogues to use less. I'm guessing with the new legislation that the bags may now be paper or that customers will cover the bag fee, something I'm not entirely sure of.

Avon don't take cards through reps, so it was just cash or cheque for payment. Everyone paid in cash which I paid directly into my own bank account and then paid the Giro slip from Avon online. I didn't mind this method, but it did mean a trip to town and sometimes carrying a large amount of cash - which I'm not too keen on. At least the worry of safely storing and disposing of card information wasn't an issue though, so from that point of view cash was a blessing.

I had a cupboard allocated to Avon bits, but it really doesn't take up much room and you get freebies from time to time which I was able to keep for gifts. You can purchase samples to give to your customers, these are really cheap, keep people happy and may encourage them to buy more so it is worth doing for a few pence here and there. I loved getting those sample lipsticks and perfume bottles as a kid too, they are so cute!

The biggest downside for me was the fact that the books felt really close together. As a busy Mum, by the time I had sorted and delivered everyones orders, it was nearly time to send the next order. I felt I had to chase people a little too much and wished the books were just a couple of weeks further apart. The reps and emails felt a little much at times too, but it's just the world of sales and in a business like this it's no wonder they keep so busy, if you don't work hard you don't get paid!

To Avon or not to Avon?

Overall I would definitely recommend being an Avon rep for a little extra money or as a hobby. You really get out of it what you put in, so you can make it as big as you want to really, it just means working harder, more admin and trips out delivering goodies! There are pros and cons of this though, which I'll talk about now.


You get lots of orders.
You can make money from family and friends.
You are in control of your own mini business.
The products are nice.
You get highly discounted bargains.
Extra income.
Flexible hours around family.
It's very easy to do.
It's fun.
Free/cheap products.
Access to staff only discount book - up to 80% off products!


Catalogues are too frequent - embarrassing at times.
No card option for payments.
It's a pain when you have an order but can't get hold of the person to deliver or get payment.
Returns are a bit tricky, though not impossible.
You get bombarded with emails.
Sales leaders can be quite pushy.
Door to door knocking is not fun.

The Make-up Shop

I was an Avon rep for around six months and I just got to a point where I was confident enough to branch out a bit and sell to Mums at play groups, when not only did I get pregnant but we also had to gut our house back to brick to have emergency work done, so I had literally no storage or guarantee of getting online to process orders. This is definitely something I'd like to do again, but unfortunately two friends now do it - so my customers would be a bit limited!

I think you would struggle to get rich from Avon unless you really gave it your all, but it's definitely a good start into the working from home world and a good starter for running your own business. Thumbs up from me!

Thanks for reading,