If you’re in the market for a new opportunity, then you’re probably looking at different businesses. Some may turn out to be scams, but others are legitimate and can provide you with great opportunities. The difficult part is telling the difference between the two. No single method is completely foolproof, so it’s important to be diligent with your research and look at several different factors. Here are a few steps that can help you make the right choice.
If you have a lot of contacts, then start by asking your friends and family for their experience with a certain company. Be open about your interest and state that you’re just looking for the facts. Someone in your network may have already had an experience with the company, and their feedback can be invaluable.
Understand the Difference between MLM Companies and Pyramid Schemes
There are many multi-level marketing opportunities out there. Most home-based selling businesses like Tupperware, Avon, Mary Kay, and ACN are great examples of a MLM system. The goal isn’t just to sell products directly. It’s also to get people to sign up under you and sell products. They make commission, you get a little commission, and the company doesn’t have to invest in brick and mortar stores. Everybody wins, provided the saturation levels are under control. One of the important things to note here is that with MLM, there is an actual, tangible product being sold.
It’s important to realize that MLM companies are not pyramid schemes. The only thing being sold in a pyramid scheme is typically a fake investment. There is no legitimate product. The people at the top of the structure are not making a small commission based on the sales of those they recruited, but they are making a large commission based on the enrollment fees that are required of people below them. If you cannot identify or product, determine where said product is made, or check reviews on the physical products, then you may want to avoid the program.
Check for Saturation
You can also ask the company some hard questions about market saturation. For example, if you’re considering signing up for a franchise, you need to know that you’re going to have a solid market to yourself. If the parent company is selling as many franchises as they can, then you might wind up competing with the same brand just a block away. This would become confusing for the customer and potentially detrimental to both franchise owners. Ask if they base markets on population, geographic areas, or some other formula. Then honestly assess the information to see if the numbers make sense and if you’ll still be able to make money if someone opens up very close to you.
Look Up Other People in the Business
If a business is legitimate, then you should be able to find owners in your area or other parts of the country. Don’t get their contact information from a corporate office. Look online for people who are making the business work in different areas. Contact them directly to ask for a review of the business and see how they feel about their decision. If you’re unable to find anyone who’s actively working with the company, that’s a serious red flag.
Check the Better Business Bureau
Even if the company is not registered and accredited with the BBB, it may still have information about it with the Better Business Bureau. You can specifically ask for a reputation check so that you can make a more informed decision about the company. If you’re considering taking a position with a company, then see if there is any information about listed on review sites like GlassDoor.
Before taking the plunge and deciding to work with a company, do a little research to see if it’s a good match for you. There are some great opportunities out there, and you can use these tips to help identify them.