Multi Level Marketing is always mistaken as a pyramiding scam. Well, these two are different from one another. MLM has actual products that they sell while the Pyramiding scam or scheme are all about the recruitment and payment.
However, this does not save MLM from commiting its own crimes. There are businesses who are truthful enough and are able to help their members gain income but there are those who only pay a select few and put some money in their pockets.
One of the MLM businesses that people get confused with is the Market America. Is is legitimate because it pays? Or is it a scam with all the lawsuits it faced?
Let’s check it out!
Market America Review Summary
Product Name: Market America
Product Type: Multi Level Marketing
Creator: JR Ridinger
Summary: Market America also known as “Shop.com” is a Multi Level Marketing business. However for the company they call it, “Unfranchise”. Just like any other businesses that operate in this business model, they simply have distributors to sell their products and recruit other distributors.
Price: Initial payment of $399 and a monthly payment of $129; $20 to $200 for each training
Best For: Multi Level Marketing
Rating: 2 out of 10
What is Market America?
Market America also known as “Shop.com” is a Multi Level Marketing business. However for the company they call it, “Unfranchise”. Just like any other businesses that operate in this business model, they simply have distributors to sell their products and recruit other distributors.
This is founded by JR Ridinger, a former Amway distributor.
This company has been in the industry for more than 27 years. And they are in partnership with different companies for their products. Examples are Hudson’s Bay, Ebay, Bed Bath and many more.
They also have A+ rating from BBB.
Market America says that its products are from third party firms and manufacturers and are exclusively marketed and distributed by them.
The distributors can choose from a variety of products which they buy from the company and resell. The products cover health care like nutritional supplements and weight-loss; cosmetics like anti-aging and skin care products; and home cleaning supplies.
Since they are catered by third-party manufacturers you might want to check out their brands:
- Health and nutrition – Isotonix (they have 20 varied products under this line alone)
- Home and garden care – Snap
- Pet care- Pet Health
- Automotive care- Autowork
- Weight management TLS
- Personal care- Royal Spa, Fixx, Skintelligence
- Cosmetics- Motives by Loren Ridinger
- Jewelry- Loren Jewels, Yours by Loren Ridinger
- Water filter systems- Pure H20
- Personal financial management- maCapital Resources
- Internet marketing services- maWebCenters
In addition to that there are also for sale apparel, food and other electronic products that you can check and access through Shop.Com. Shop.com are set of third-parties that supply these products to the company.
The products are bought as wholesale which is cheaper as compared to per piece.
How does it work?
To start with Market America, you will have to spend an initial payment of $399 and a monthly payment of $129. If you are an independent contractor, you are still required to spend $130 up to $300 on products of Market America that is available on Shop.com.
Once you become a memberYou are also required to do the following tasks on a monthly basis:
- buy a minimum order per month as a member
- Complete all paper works for the company
- Attend weekly meeting and trainings
- Teach your downlines on a regular basis
Sales are done through one-on-one marketing or selling.
Each training, seminar and events that they require you to attend actually costs you $20 tp $200. Yup, these are not for free so you have to spend for all of it.
In addition, the company calls their members as independent distributors or “Unfranchise Business Owners”. Whether you are operating as an individual distributor or as a business entity, you sell them online as a retail website and you will be referred to as their “Partner Stores”
What went wrong?
They actually have a good reputation at first. Their ratings were high and they were running the business for almost three decades now. So what went wrong with Market America?
There are several suits filed against them and the most recent one is a lawsuit brought by Chuanjie Yang and Ollie Lan accuses Greensboro, who are California residents. They accused the company of violating the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and California state law.
They claim that they are being taken advantage of because of their Nationality. Furthermore, they explained that the company targets Chinese-American immigrants for the reason that they have limited access to the channels that will help them exercise their legal right. And to quote, “they don’t “have regularly available legal channels to vindicate their legal rights.”
Market America denied these accusations and settled the case privately. However another incident happened earlier than these which they neither admitted or denied.
They faced allegations that are related to stock sales. This crime was made by someone on behalf of one of the Ridinger family trust. They settled the case by paying $235, 498 and a fine of $100,000. They also paid an interest to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
And there are more cases filed against them which you can check online and through the news sites. Overall, they faced around 5 filed cases and allegations which they only denied one of those.
Same Ole Strokes
Some reviews claim that Market America is not an MLM but seeks to start a new brand that will serve as a substitute or an improvement on the MLM model. However, critics would argue that there is no thing that is not an MLM in their current model.
They actually term it as “incarnation of Multi Level Marketing”. This is because they still uphold the foundational characteristic of an MLM Business Model.
- The quality of the products they sell are actually interchangeable with products outside their company with a more affordable price.
- What the distributors do is to introduce to their customers Market America Products and the same thing is done by their downlines.
- There’s this promise that MLM says to their downlines, that they can be as rich as the owner of the company when they become a member or when they continue to invest in it.
Is Market America a Scam?
So you might be thinking, some of their distributors are actually successful but some are not. So is it really a scam?
Well, I think there is a more relevant question other than that. Is it safe? Is is worth the risk? Can I trust the company? Like what I always in my reviews, there are always risks when you start a business so pick the one that you can trust.
Scam does not only mean they do not pay at all. Scam could be paying less to have more, and still taking advantage of other people. Personally, I wouldn’t trust a company who have a bad record regardless of they pay or not.
If you are going to look at it, these are not simply complaints but lawsuits were actually filed. I bet these are serious matters and all of it involves mishandling of money.
There is a better alternative when it comes to business where you do not have to risk much of your money and you will actually get more returnns.
Affiliate Marketing is one of the fastest growing online businesses. A lot of people in any age range are drawn into trying it and succeed! There are a lot of advantages that are within your reach once you start with this business.
It is simple and easy. There are no recruitment needed and there is no need to buy the products! You can be an affiliate of a certain merchant like Amazon. You just need a website to start with that will as a platform for you to promote their products.
Yes! You don’t have to drag yourself into selling the products face to face! As long as you have a good content and make people buy though your affiliate link, commissions will start to flow into your account. You also get to choose what kind of niche you want to concentrate on. For example, you love cosmetics and skin cares you can focus on that niche!
This is why it is so great to have free sign-up successful programs online that are equally legitimate and successful as the paid one. Wealthy Affiliate is one of the biggest Affiliate Marketing platforms. It currently has millions of members and thousands being added weekly! Wondering why? Take a look at these freebies!
1. Free membership
This is very helpful if you are starting or trying to build your business. Instead of paying for a lot of software, you can use those resources in other expenses where it is needed. You will save a lot and gain the same income through a Wealthy Affiliate!
2. Face to Face trainings
One of the advantages in Wealthy Affiliate is having face-to-face mentoring or training. You have access to videos and manuals that will teach and guide you in your online business. You get to ask questions real time and have a conversation with trainers.
There is also a weekly webinar where you can learn up-to-date infos about the field or the market you are working on. Awesome!
3. Website Builder
Included in this platform is a website host and domain! It is very pricey to pay for it on a different service. In Wealthy Affiliate, you can already have it in their package. They will also help you build and personalize according to your needs and market.
4. Keyword research tool
Since SEO is a great determinant of your success here, they are also providing a research tool that computes the competitiveness of your keyword. Can’t think of anything? It is okay. It will also give good suggestions of high rank keywords for you!
5. 24/7 Technical and Community Support
What if something goes wrong? You do not have to wait for cue! You are welcomed by tech support 24/7. This will save you a lot of time and energy than waiting for another office hour to ask or figure out things by scrolling hours in the internet.
Another thing is the community within the program. You will not study the topics alone but you will also learn from other people who are also starting or are successful in the business. They are a very engaging, kind and active community.
6. Worldwide partnerships
Finding the right niche is very crucial and not easy. Thanks to Wealthy Affiliate because it already offers legitimate and successful affiliate programs! All you need to do is choose from their categories where your interests and likes fit. You choose from thousands of good programs.
Lesser risks and high incomes, just as how you want it! Check out Wealthy Affiliate and learn more!