- 10 Jun 2020
The original work from home opportunity, what does direct selling look like in 2020?
In recent months a lot of Australians have been working from home, it temporarily became the new normal.
Direct selling was the original work from home opportunity, and now many people are seeing the benefits this flexible industry could offer.
What is direct selling?
Direct selling is a form of retail where products and services are marketed directly to the consumer, no physical store required.
It’s about building relationships and connecting with people to offer a quality product or service that you believe in.
Importantly, it’s an avenue for the entrepreneurial-minded. People who thrive working independently and are looking for a business opportunity with low start-up costs and minimal risk.
How direct selling got started
Direct selling has been a way people sell goods and services since there have been good and services to offer.
However, the formal direct selling business model we are familiar with today was established in 1855 by a company now called Southwestern.
Since then, direct selling has become a $22 billion market, engaging almost 100 million people around the world.
How does direct selling work?
Many companies are set up in a direct selling format. It’s likely they all differ slightly, but this is how it works.
For a low start-up cost, you purchase your business under the umbrella and support of the established brand.
The investment usually buys you your business kit (the products you demonstrate/sell) and access to training and marketing materials. Essentially, you’re buying the rights to become a seller for the company.
In direct selling, products can be demonstrated and sold in a group presentation (like an ENJO Demo), person-to-person and sometimes online.
There’s no physical shop, it’s about being social and bringing people together at a time and location that’s convenient.
When you make a sale, you make a commission on that sale. It’s that simple.
What does direct selling look like in 2020?
Many of the great benefits that originally enticed entrepreneurial thinkers to direct selling still apply today.
You create your business hours to suit your schedule. You work on your own but you’re still affiliated with a bigger company that offers support and rewards. You choose to sell a product that you believe in.
What has changed?
The online aspect of social selling has made it even more appealing to a wider range of people.
Social media has opened up a free marketing and networking tool for direct sellers.
Social media not only helps direct sellers build a community, but it also allows them to become content creators and the authority on their subject matter. This helps business owners extends their reach to new potential customers.
There are online training programs and networks to better set business owners up for success from the very beginning, and online groups to offer advice in a supportive community setting.
Online ordering platforms and even digital demonstrations help create wider access to the products you’re sharing, especially in a remote area.
Direct sellers can now tailor their services to meet the needs of their customers, but to also suit their own needs. Approximately 89% of direct sellers work their business on a part-time basis as this best suits their lifestyle.
Things to consider before starting a direct selling business
The risk is low when starting a direct selling business, but that doesn’t mean it should be taken lightly.
Here are some questions you should ask yourself before you get started.
1. Am I passionate about the products?
There's plenty of choices when it comes to Direct Selling companies.
The Direct Selling Association (DSA) is the recognised trade body for direct selling companies in Australia, and it has about 60 member companies.
Whatever direct selling business you’re thinking of joining, the thing that matters most is passion.
Over 25 years of direct selling in Australia, the most successful ENJO Business owners have pride and passion in the products they sell.
Passion really drives your business and creates an authentic business and rapport with your customers, something you can’t underestimate in business.
2. Am I ready to talk to people?
Even though online selling and social media have made direct selling more accessible, real success comes from building genuine relationships and that means talking to people.
Product demonstrations will always be daunting at first, but quickly become second nature, you just have to be ready to make the calls and build relationships.
3. Am I ready for rejection?
The great thing about Direct Selling in 2020 is that you can utilise social media to build communities of like-minded people. People who follow your account because they have a genuine interest in what you have to say.
However, it's important to remember and respect the fact that not everyone is going to be receptive to what you have to say or like what you have to sell.
Understanding diverse points of view and accepting rejection is part of any business.
Is it time to create your own new normal?
Now more than ever people are considering different ways to work to suit their lifestyle or supplement their income.
This change in how we want to work is shining a light on the direct selling industry that empowers people to make changes to their work-life balance.
It's important to do your research and map out how you want to run your direct selling business, and if your plan is feasible when it comes to fulfilling your ambitions and income.
For more information about Direct Selling, visit the DSA website.