Arbonne MLM Review

Hey there sea changers, and welcome back to my series of MLM reviews. Today I wanted to discuss one of the better known programs out there with my Arbonne MLM review. I actually have a couple of friends who are involved with this one – one made great money (she even made it to a trip to Vegas) and one made nothing. I have spoken to them both and although neither are involved now – both ‘left’ for reasons not to do with the program itself – their reviews are mixed. So with that known is Arbonne a MLM worth joining? Well let’s check it out…

Is Arbonne a MLM - stripe

Oh, I will discuss their experiences later on as well…

Note: I am not a member of the Arbonne MLM Program (and hence make no commissions from any of the links included within this post). The reason for this is that I prefer to write these posts based on what a newbie would be seeing if they were interested in joining – that way I feel I can make a better judgement on what it is that these companies are offering within their programs.

What is MLM?

Multi-level marketing (MLM) programs are the mainstay of the ‘party plan’ world of products such as Tupperware, Mary Kay and Amway etc. and, of course within the beauty/cosmetics market. MLMs have become a little more popular lately, mainly due to the fact that much of the sales and marketing is now being managed online – alleviating the need to run parties – and, more importantly, not hassle everybody you know to join (you can of course, but you don’t have to).

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Arbonne MLM Review

The ‘multi level’ aspects of MLM come from its hierarchical nature in which you make commissions based not only on those that you sell to, but also the sales of those whom you ‘sign’ into membership arrangements as well.

In short, the process works as follows:

  1. You join the program, either via referral from another person (known as your up line) or directly through their website.
  2. You promote the products of the company via parties, workshops or online.
  3. As you make sales, you offer incentives to your customers to sign up as a member of the program (there are different names for this but they all mean the same thing).
  4. That new member is then placed ‘underneath’ you in a hierarchical arrangement (known as your down line).
  5. You, and a number of levels of your up line, then gain extra commissions for everything they sell as well.
  6. If they manage to refer their customers into memberships, they also become a member of your down line allowing you to make up line commissions as well.

The number of levels of your up and down lines will vary depending on the program you have joined. Commission rates will also change as your down line grows or contracts and many will also offer other incentives such as total company sales percentages and/or access to membership prizes as your own business grows.

Who are Arbonne?

Is Arbonne a MLM - home

Arbonne was founded in 1980 by Petter Mørck and is based out of California in the U.S. He started his skincare and makeup journey in Norway in the 60s but was unhappy with the ingredients being used in many of the products. He started Arbonne with just 19 products and it has built to where it is now with over $500 million in revenue and more than 200,000 Independent Consultants. Petter’s set of guiding principles for his life’s work are as follows:

Is Arbonne a MLM - stripe2

Since 1980, Arbonne has expanded to offices in Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, Poland and New Zealand. Its main aim is to “transform lives through our botanically based products and the opportunity to be part of our flourishing network of Arbonne Independent Consultants”.

What do they Sell?

Ok, there is a lot of stuff here – which is one of the things my friends said they liked about the program – there was just so many options to look at. Their catalogue however is maybe too much to list it all but I will an outline below:

Skincare

  • Cleansers and Toners
  • Moisturisers
  • Treatments
  • Grooming – including a decent men’s range
  • Accessories

Bath and Body

  • Washes, scrubs and soaks
  • Lotions
  • Body treatments
  • Personal care
  • Fragrance

Make up

  • Face
  • Cheeks
  • Lips
  • Eyes

Hair

  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Treatments
  • Styling products

Is Arbonne a MLM - products

Like many other companies within this niche, they have also branched out with a fairly large range of nutrition supplements. Their products here include:

  • Vitamins and Minerals
  • Protein
  • Fiber
  • Omega-3s
  • Snacks and beverages
  • Sports/fitness

I have seen a few clever marketers discuss this cross selling opportunity as one where they can work from the ‘outside in’ with their range of products.

MLM Program outline

The Arbonne MLM program calls their members Independent Consultants who are part of what looks to be a simple, almost ‘old school’ programs with basic commissions and only a few extra bonus options. As with many companies that offer MLM opportunities, their website and processes appear to set it up as a network marketing company first, and a marketplace second. The compensation plan for this program (they actually call it their Success Plan) is available on their site so let’s check out the basics.

Discount: 15 – 35% for Consultants

Base Commission rate: 15 – 35% (based on retail sales on discounts above)

Down line commission rates: 1 – 8% to 6 levels (1st generation (down line level 1) rates 8%

Minimum monthly spend to qualify for commissions

  • Consultants are required to maintain a minimum 150 Personal Qualifying Volume (PQV) per month via their personalised website – this can be personal or customer purchases.

Payment terms: Weekly and monthly.

Application required?: Yes, personal and payment information at time of first purchase

Purchase requirements to join: Yes

  • $65 registration fee ($35 renewal fee per annum)

Special starter kits are available but not mandatory (as far as I could tell)

Marketing materials provided: Personal website, marketing materials, back office

Is Arbonne a MLM - opportunity stripe

As with the bigger programs, downline commissions and rankings are determined by the total Override Volume (OV) generated by the consultant and their down line within a calendar month. Most MLM programs manage it this way in that commissions are paid on the points assigned to a product rather than the entire sales total. Arbonne calculates its OV at 65% of the Retail Volume (total sales) so for example, if a product retails for $100 which gives it a 65 OV rating (these generally vary from product to product) then the commission is calculated on $65 only. So if a commission rate for a product is 8% then it will generate a $5.20 payment to the sponsor (i.e. 8% of the $65 commissionable amount).

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How can I get paid?

The compensation plan promotes 4 ways in which consultants can make money when they promote and sell products. These are quite standard for a MLM program however commission rates within this program are a little on the lower side when compared to some others I have seen. Let’s check them out…

Client Commissions

Client Commissions are the base profits earned by the general day to day retail sales that consultants can make either in person or via their website. There are two main ways here:

  • Earn a commission of up to 35% (15% if the purchaser is a preferred customer) of the purchase value if done so at retail prices (basically the difference between the distributor discount and the retail price).
  • Purchase products at the discounted rate and on sell them at retail prices within a shop front, market stall or kiosk – or even the traditional party plan method.

Commission Overrides

Commission Overrides are the stock standard Unilevel commission arrangements common to most MLM programs. Commissions are paid down to 6 levels on all generated volume within the downline of the Consultant. Rates are as follows:

Is Arbonne a MLM - overrides

As with most programs, the higher the rank, the more commissions are paid.

Mercedes-Benz Cash Bonus

Once a consultant reached the rank of Vice President or above, they become eligible for the Mercedes-Benz Cash Bonus Program. The cash bonus ranges from $200 up to $1000 per month and is dependent upon total group sales within their down line.

To qualify, consultants must be ‘Active’ and provide documentation that they have purchased or leased a white Mercedes-Benz automobile and have affixed the Arbonne car emblem to it.

Independent Consultant Cash Bonus

The Independent Consultant Cash Bonus is paid on each rank based on number of new consultants recruited and their total sales. Bonus amounts start at $100 up to $600 each time the rank specific targets are met. An example for new consultants is as follows:

Is Arbonne a MLM - cash bonus

Ranking structure

As you have probably noticed, the commissions and bonuses paid out above are reliant upon the ‘rank’ that distributors are assigned within the Arbonne MLM program. I was unable to find a table with all of the ranking qualifications in one place however below is an example of the requirements for the rank of Regional Vice President.

Is Arbonne a MLM - regional rank

Again, as is common with almost all MLM programs, rank progression is determined by both the number of members within your down line legs, and the total sales made by those legs per month. Ranks can rise and fall based on the ability (or dis-ability) to reach the required member and sales targets.

What is good about it?

So, after a good look around the site and looking at all the options I could find, I do like the following:

  • Commission/discount rates for entry level sales are good.
  • Information in regards to their MLM program is easy to find.
  • The program is quite simple and easy to follow.

What is no so good about it?

There are also some things to be aware of including:

  • Entry level costs are not high, but they are there.
  • Commission rates are quite low compared to many others within this niche.
  • There are not as many bonuses and payment options as some others within this niche.

How much can you make?

To be honest, the figures supplied by Arbonne within this Income Disclosure statement do not reveal anything to give it an advantage over the others within this niche.

Is Arbonne a MLM - income disclosure

As with most MLM programs, the percentage of members making the upper rank levels – and hence earning a living – is very low. That said, these figures are no worse than any other cosmetics or beauty based MLM programs.

My final thoughts

Look, MLM is not an easy platform to make money in. And my main concerns with this program is that unilevel commission rates are quite low and that there are not as many options here to earn as a new entrant (via fast start incentives etc.) than some of the other programs I have seen.

There are entry level costs involved however a starter kit is not mandatory. Consultants are also not required to maintain personal sales per month as long as they can generate the PV requirements via their retail customer sales – meaning that if this falls short, then personal sales will be required to qualify for commissions. Although if I am being honest – I think that to be successful in any MLM program, you will need to have a good understanding of the products, hence personal sales are necessary.

At the end of the day, there is nothing here that would make me tell you to avoid it like the plague, however I do feel that other programs within this niche might offer a little more in terms of earning capacity for consultants.

I was unable to locate any negative reviews in terms of non-payment etc. however there was some negative comments about the quality of products and the MLM program itself – although it was not really anything that is uncommon in regards to MLM programs or products within this niche.

What did my friends say?

Oh yeah, firstly, Donna made it all the way to the higher ranks and was making about $10,000 per month. She says she loved it and would have stayed if not for the high-flying corporate job she was offered. Her only real negative comment was about having to push her downline for sales – this is MLM 101.

Karen lasted a few months and made “around $200” after purchases. She got out as she didn’t have the time required to dedicate to the program as she had two little ones at home. I got the impression she was being pressured by her up line to get more – another common MLM trait. She still loves and uses the products.

They both said the program was fine – and in line with most others – however there was always a need to purchase from their own funds in the early stages.

Time and money – two things that are essential if you want to start an MLM business.

Conclusion

So there you have it, my honest review and appraisal of the Arbonne MLM program. I hope it has been of assistance but as usual, if you have any questions or experience with this program please do not hesitate to reach out by commenting below – especially if any of my information is inaccurate.

Are there any other programs you have been looking at but want to know more about? If so, please comment below and I will do my best to get some details for you.

Do you want further assistance with any of the above or need help to build your own Supplements, Cosmetics or MLM based website?

Are you looking for a comprehensive training platform that can give you step by step training, 24/7 support, tools to develop and host your very own website, ongoing assistance with SEO and social media and access to some of the best affiliate marketing minds on the planet, then click on the following link to read more about Wealthy Affiliate.

Until next time

Have fun

Paul

Note: If you make a purchase from this page, there is a very good chance that I make a commission from it – these commissions do not increase your sale price.

Arbonne MLM Program

$65.00 +
5.2

Clarity of Information

8.0/10

Commission Structure

5.0/10

Cost to Enter

5.0/10

Ongoing Cost Requirements

6.0/10

Bonus Structure

2.0/10

Pros

  • Commission/discount rates for entry level sales are good.
  • Information in regards to their MLM program is easy to find.
  • The program is quite simple and easy to follow.

Cons

  • Entry level costs are not high, but they are there.
  • Commission rates are quite low compared to many others within this niche.
  • There are not as many bonuses and payment options as some others within this niche.

Hey there, my name is Paul and I am the owner and founder of Make That Sea Change.  I spent 30 years in a cubicle working the 9 to 5 grind and just wanted to live at the beach.  I was lucky enough to achieve that with the help of my wife and our new Pilates studio.

Then I decided to help fund my new sea change with some affiliate marketing.  I joined Wealthy Affiliate, and as they say, the rest is history.

Let me know how I can help you fund your sea change today!

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