Young Living is one of the most well-known and popular essential oil MLMs in the market. The field is an important one, as essential oils continue to be incredibly popular among many different audiences. Some people are fascinated by the potential health benefits of using such oils regularly, while others are simply interested in the scents.
Essential oils are also appealing from a sales perspective. One advantage is that you're dealing with a consumable product. This means that people will keep coming back for more. There are also plenty of different oils to choose from.
Another cool aspect is that essential oils aren't all the same, even for two essential oils from the same plants. The specific plant crops used, the extraction processes, the bottling and any other chemicals used are all factors that can influence the final product.
It's difficult to know whether such differences have any impact on potential health benefits or the scent of the oils. However, they do provide a good talking point and Young Living seems to think that its oils are high quality.
So far, Young Living looks pretty encouraging. Let's take a closer look and see whether the company would be a good way to make money.
As an MLM, Young Living follows a familiar pattern. The initial way to make money is by selling the products. You then have the option of increasing your income potential by recruiting people and building a team under you.
Both of those approaches can work and some people do make money through Young Living. Even so, we're more interested in whether making money is realistic for the average new member.
That's why this article finishes with a consideration of the overall income potential of Young Living and what you can expect from the company.
When it comes to product sales, the first consideration is what you are selling. Appealing products that are reasonably priced will sell better than expensive alternatives. It also helps if the company makes the items seem unique.
Young Living is clever in this area. Many of the products have unique names or combinations of ingredients, making it impossible to compare directly with other products on the market.
A good example of this is the Thieves essential oil from Young Living. This is one of their most popular oils and it is a mixture of various individual essential oils. Because the precise mixture isn't known, anyone who enjoys the oil needs to buy it from Young Living.
Young Living has also branched out past just focusing on essential oils. They now have a wide range of different product types. Some of these use essential oils as an ingredient, while others have a more general focus on health.
There are other types of oil products in the mix too, like CBD oil. The variety of products is ideal from the sales perspective. Not just focusing on essential oils means that you can promote products to a wider audience.
There is some bad news too. Most of the products at Young Living are pretty expensive. A 15ml of lavender essential oil will set you back more than $30 for example, which is certainly on the high end of the market.
In contrast, Amazon offers many different essential oils that are less expensive. The image below shows prices for two different oils. While they're a little smaller, they tend to get good reviews and are much less expensive.
Whether these oils are as good as what Young Living offers is highly debatable. Even if you're convinced that the oils from Young Living are superior, you will still need to get other people to believe the same.
There is also very little evidence that the products from Young Living are any better than other things out there on the market. Oh – and don’t be fooled by the Therapeutic Grade claim on the essential oils. Many brands use a similar claim and the phrase doesn't mean anything.
There is no grading system for essential oils and the company even says that their founder invented the grade that Young Living uses. There isn’t even any indication of what this means in terms of what is and isn’t in the oil. Instead, it just seems to be a marketing label slapped on the products to make them sound better.
Honestly, if the products from Young Living were that much better, why aren’t they organic? In reality, Young Living’s products are priced much higher than most others in the marketplace and there is little indication that they are any better in terms of quality.
I'm sure that many people will disagree, saying that many other brands are lower in quality. Regardless of the truth, there isn't much evidence. You also need to convince potential customers that the oils are worth the price tag. This suggests that you should be convinced about the quality of the oils (and other products) before getting involved. If you have any doubts, your ability to convince others is likely to suffer.
One side note is the way that people use oils. If someone is specifically looking for health benefits from essential oil, they'll probably be expecting relatively expensive oils. On the other hand, potential customers who simply want a nice smell won't want to pay through the roof for oil.
Issues With The Products
The company itself has actually got in some trouble with the FDA over misrepresenting some of its essential oils by claiming that they had the potential to either prevent or cure the Ebola virus (you can read the full information here).
This makes the rest of the claims on the site pretty questionable as well, especially claims about things like cancer protection. Seriously? Prevent cancer and heart disease? You gotta be kidding me!
I hate claims like this and I'm glad that Young Living seems to be toning them down.
Young Living actually sells its own products through its website and some of them are also sold on Amazon (even if they are not supposed to be). This works well for people wanting just the products, but it sucks for anyone trying to make money through the opportunity.
This means that you have to compete with Amazon and the Young Living site itself for sales, as well as with other distributors and other products. All of this makes the process of actually making sales all the more difficult.
In fact, I saw someone doing this today in Starbucks. It took about 45 minutes of explanation, and I'm not sure whether or not the distributor ‘sealed the deal' at the end. Remember: There will be many of these sessions that result in no sales. How well can you handle rejection? It's all part of the biz.
Additionally, many of the products from Young Living last a long time. Essential oils are a good example of this because you don’t use much at a time. In fact, people often buy them on a whim and never really use them at all. I bought a multi-pack about 6 months ago. With 3-4 drops for a full tank on my diffuser, I imagine these will last me all year unless I really run the diffuser 24/7.
This means that even if you get one or two sales of someone, getting more will not be easy, especially if you are counting on selling to friends and family.
An appealing feature of Young Living is that the company is entirely up-front about their compensation plan. This is very impressive and is much better than hiding the information away.
The basic premise is the same as any other MLM. Distributors can make money simply selling the products, but to make a decent amount of income they also have to recruit other people into the business. The more generations of people the member recruits, the more they earn.
At least that’s the theory.
Young Living uses a variety of criteria to determine the ranks of individual members. These include the following:
- Personal Volume (PV): Monthly volume of total personal orders
- Organization Group Volume (OGV): Monthly volume of yourself and everyone in your downline
- Personal Group Volume (PGV): Your OGV with some specific groups excluded
- Leg: Every new member that you personally sponsor becomes the start of a new leg in your downline
- Leg Volume @ OGV: This focuses on how many legs you need and monthly OGV for new ranks
As you can see, the system gets complicated fast. I'm not even showing you all of the definitions, much less the requirements for each rank. The further up the ranks you go, the more you have to do in order to get and stay there. The incentive for going up in ranks is (of course) more money, as the higher ranks earn commissions from more levels.
Young Living wants people to look at its compensation plan and see opportunity, but really, there is more work there than anything else.
The tiers require you to buy a certain number of products per month (the Personal Volume) and also for your ‘organization’ to buy a certain number of products per month. This means the people you sell to or the people you recruit have to buy a certain number of products.
This can actually be pretty tricky.
In fact, even recruiting people to the organization can be a challenging task. Getting them to stay there, buy things, make sales and recruit others is even more difficult.
My own experience has shown me that relatively few people have the dedication required to be successful at business. This isn't a problem if you're working on your own, but it's a serious concern if you need to rely on other people for your income.
Like most MLMs, Young Living looks good on paper but is much more challenging in practice. The company isn't a scam, you can still make money. They're even very up-front about the processes that are involved.
Without a plan to get online and reach other people in the world (online marketing), the vast majority of sellers will not make money from selling products to other people and will rely on recruiting distributors that must fulfill their personal volume numbers to remain active.
Distributors end up fighting an uphill battle to make money and you are completely dependent on the company and the people in your downstream – which is never a good situation.
Besides, let's be honest. There are plenty of essential oil companies out there and the oils from Young Living aren't hard to find. Can you really expect to make consistent sales?
Still Selling Junk To Your Friends?
What is this - the 1950's selling Tupperware? Gimme a break. It's 2019. If you want to build a business, you NEED to be online or your business will be dead in less than 10 years.
Plus, those MLM parties boring as hell, and you know it. Nobody wants to buy that overpriced junk. Sorry to be so straightforward, but I really want to see you succeed.
You can start an affiliate website, you can promote ANY products you want from ANY company, so why are you selling such a limited range of products? Affiliate commissions range from 5% to 75%, and include Amazon products, digital products, and recurring services.
Last year I generated multiple six figures with my affiliate sites, and I can show you how to make them using the same templates. You get to promte whatever you want of course, and YOU keep all the profits (no upline!).