Amway Pyramid Scheme – Scam or Legit MLM? Read This Review!

Are you looking for an Amway MLM review? Is Amway a pyramid scheme? If you want to make money online, you might have heard of this program. But you may wonder if it is a scam.

There is a good chance that you heard about Amway MLM through someone – a friend or family member.

Many people these days are looking for additional income, and you are most likely one of them. There was then an opportunity to work from home through Amway MLM.

I have a passion to help people explore the best money-making opportunities online, so over the years, I have reviewed hundreds of similar online programs like Amway MLM.

To help you make a more informed decision, I have thoroughly researched the Amway MLM so I can tell you more about it.

As a disclaimer, I’m not affiliated with Amway MLM. It means I’m not paid to write this review. So you can rest assured that you will get an honest and unbiased review from me.

At the end of this review, I’ll also tell you the best alternative to Amway MLM that has enabled me to make a full-time passive income online.

Amway MLM Review – Key Takeaways

  • Name: Amway MLM
  • Pros: MLM opportunity to make money
  • Cons: Amway MLM has a very low success rate; Amway products are expensive; Amway is a cult
  • Overall Rating: 1/5
  • Who is Amway MLM For: Amway MLM is supposed for marketers to make money. But you are unlikely to make a penny because of the MLM nature and you may end up losing a lot of money.
  • The Best Alternative: An All-in-One Platform to Make Passive Income Online

In this Amway MLM review, I’m going to cover the following in this review:

What is Amway MLM?

Amway, founded in 1979, is a multilevel marketing company best known for its home-based products and landmark case against pyramid schemes.

No other multilevel marketing company earns as much revenue as they do based solely on numbers.

Amway Global is the world’s leading direct selling company, earning $8.9 billion per year. The company is $3 billion dollars ahead of Avon and Herbalife.

Previously, Amway distributors could be found on every street corner. Amway employs over 17,000 people in more than 100 countries. Although no official figures have been released, the number of distributors is estimated to be between three and four million.

According to Forbes’ most recent business rankings, Amway is the 44th largest privately held company in the United States by revenue.

Amway has been named to the “Top 100 list” of direct selling news for several years in a row.

They have a mile-long headquarters with 80 buildings totaling 3.5 million square feet of commercial space.

In addition, the company owns an Amway Grand Plaza hotel in Grand Rapids.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Who Founded Amway MLM?

Amway was founded in 1959 by Jay Van Andel and Richard DeVos. Van Andel and DeVos first met at the Grand Rapids Christian School. They met because they were both interested in business and sales.

Both DeVos and Van Andel had previously worked together in other businesses, the majority of which failed. Nutrilite was one of these failed businesses.

Nutrilite was unlike most businesses at the time in that it offered both sales bonuses and incentives to get others to become suppliers.

In other words, Nutrilite’s primary business was selling nutritional supplements, but they later expanded into cleaning products such as Fluid Organic Cleanser.

Jay Van Andel and Richard DeVos had finally found a business model that they believed would work. They left Nutrilite and founded Amway, which stands for “American Way.”

The company quickly became well-known all over the world. However, in the United States, Amway’s online reputation quickly deteriorated as people began to regard it as a pyramid scheme.

In 1999, the company’s name was changed to Alticor, and its sales divisions were renamed Quixtar Brand.

Amway is currently the most well-known multi-level marketing company in the world. They appear to be a good way to get to a wide range at first glance.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

What is the Quality of Amway Products?

Whatever you think of Amway’s MLM. They do, however, produce high-quality goods. People who have tried their supplements have given them nothing but positive feedback.

They are well-known for cultivating, harvesting, and processing the plants used in these supplements on their own organic farms.

Amway also claims to use Egyptian worms for soil fertilization. Amway is not the only company that has achieved success in this area.

Are you familiar with their “LOC” cleaner? The “legacy of clean” is fully biodegradable and made from natural ingredients. Organic was mainstream for Amway before it was a trend.

Amway’s Artistry line also includes cosmetics and personal care items. This is yet another revenue stream worth millions of dollars per year.

The eSpring is the company’s most well-known product. It purifies municipal water. Consumer reports rated it “excellent” among the general public.

If you look deeper into this Amway product, you’ll notice that it’s purified using a UV light and a carbon block filter.

Amway’s XS energy drink is one of their most addictive products, with independent business owners selling over $100 million worth of it each year.

This multilevel marketing company has no shortage of products that make money for them every minute of the day.

The Amway business model, on the other hand, has typical MLM inflated pricing. There is no doubt that they do not have the lowest prices in the MLM industry.

Amway’s premium price is understandable given the company’s high-quality products almost everywhere.

Despite the fact that they manufacture many high-quality products, this business opportunity is fraught with controversy.

Why Are Amway Products So Expensive?

The products are significantly more expensive than those of the competition when an MLM or other pyramid scheme is involved.

To make a profit, the company must first profit from the distributor, and you must profit from the end user.

As a result, you have trouble selling to anyone other than your family and friends, who only buy to help you and be nice to you.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

What is MLM?

Before we get into Amway MLM, I’d like to explain what MLM is and how it differs from traditional business models.

Multilevel marketing companies are also known as direct sales companies or network marketing companies.

An MLM company does not pay you a salary.

You make money by recruiting others to join your business rather than selling products. If you hire someone and they start making money, you get paid a commission on the sales and recruits they bring in.

There are several levels to this (hence multi-level).

Think about a triangle. If the person at the top of the triangle recruits ten people, and each of these ten recruits ten more, and each of these ten recruits ten more, you will receive commissions from everyone in the triangle because they are all in your direct downline (in an MLM, the people beneath you are known as your ‘downline,’ and you are their ‘upline’).

You can earn $1100 by recruiting 10 people.

Even if your MLM company offers a wide range of products, most people prefer to recruit others because they can earn a lifetime passive income from them, whereas if they sold a product, they would only receive a one-time commission.

People at the top make a lot of money because money trickles up to the top of the triangle, while people at the bottom make the least.

The ultimate goal of someone who works for a company like Amway MLM is to have as many people in their ‘downline’ as possible, allowing them to earn large amounts of passive income.

How Does Amway MLM Work?

You must spend your own money to join the Amway market. If you want to be a member of the “direct marketing association,” you must purchase the products. You must also pay fees.

You should not only be seen using their products, which are frequently much more expensive than their Target counterparts, but you should also have some on hand to give to anyone who is interested.

Distributors are paid a percentage of the sales of each item they sell. A day can only sell so much soap.

So the real money comes from the fees people pay to become “independent business owners,” as Amway refers to it when you hire others to sell for you.

The money moves up to you as new people sign up under you and start recruiting new salespeople.

The only way to make a lot of money is to hire other people (or even a pyramid model).

Even though Amway is not a traditional pyramid scheme, it is set up in a pyramid shape that is very similar to traditional pyramid schemes.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Is Amway A Pyramid Scheme?

A pyramid scheme recruits members by promising them money or services in exchange for enrolling others.

A pyramid scheme is unsustainable and frequently a scam because members lose money as the number of recruits increases.

Those who want to join must pay a fee to an organization that runs a pyramid scheme. The organization will share a portion of the funds raised from each additional member they recruit as a reward.

The directors of the organization receive a portion of these payments (those at the top of the pyramid).

The scam is profitable for the directors whether or not they do any work. It is in the membership’s best interests to recruit and funnel money to the top of the pyramid.

Such organizations almost never sell valuable goods or services. The scam’s only source of revenue is from recruiting new members and soliciting more money from current members because it does not produce any goods or services.

Pyramid schemes are very similar to exponential growth mathematics. The size of a pyramid grows dramatically with each level. A pyramid scheme would have to grow indefinitely in order to make money for everyone who joins. This is impossible due to the planet’s finite population.

The scam will fail in the absence of new recruits and other income sources. Because the largest terms are at the bottom of this geometric sequence, the majority of people live in the pyramid’s bottom layer.

Workers in pyramid schemes typically promote the company rather than the product they are selling. At some point, no one at the bottom of the pyramid will make any money, while only those at the top will profit.

People at the top of the pyramid usually make money, while those at the bottom usually lose money. Because they are at the bottom of a pyramid scheme, the majority of participants lose money.

Members at the scheme’s bottom will have no chance of profiting if the scheme fails, but they will have already paid.

Is Amway, then, a pyramid scheme?

No. Amway does not operate as a pyramid scheme. It’s possible for members of the company to make money by selling their products.

They don’t have to make money solely through recruitment.

Watch the short video below to learn more:

How Much Money Can You Earn with Amway MLM?

We can find out by reviewing their 2017 income disclosure statement for the United Kingdom and Ireland. Amway does not produce income disclosure statements for the United States, so we are unable to investigate them.

At the end of August 2017, Amway had 17,205 registered Retail Consultants.

Only 4,735 of them received rebates from Amway. In other words, 12,470 people, or 72.5 percent, earned nothing.

Furthermore, the 27.5 percent who did work had an average monthly wage of £41.82, giving them an annual income of £501.84 before expenses.

Business Consultants are at the top of Amway’s pyramid-shaped earnings chart. There were only 66 of them in 2016-17, and their average monthly income was £2,281 (£27,372 per year).

Only 66 of the 36,940 Amway members in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland earned more than £110 per month on average that year.

It makes no difference if you’re an Amway top rep (remember, this represents only 0.17 percent of all those who join) because you’ll still have to deduct your expenses from your income. In that case, your ‘profits’ will be significantly reduced, if not completely eliminated.

According to FTC research, the average net income (after expenses) for the top 200 Amway distributors in Wisconsin was approximately minus $900.

According to their tax returns, the top Amway representatives in Wisconsin lost money on average.

This information was obtained from state tax returns obtained by the Wisconsin Attorney General’s Office in a 1980 lawsuit against Amway.

According to the same study, winning a single spin of a roulette wheel in Las Vegas is 286 times more likely than profiting as an Amway representative.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

14 Reasons Why I Don’t Recommend Amway MLM

1. The Good Reviews are Written by Amway MLM’s Affiliates

You probably have found some other reviews of Amway MLM and all of them are saying good words.

But all of them are actually paid to write, meaning they will receive a commission if you join Amway MLM via their links. Therefore, their words are often biased and not trustworthy.

Those reviews are simply sales pages and do not tell you the hidden costs and the difficulties of really making money.

By common sense, should you trust someone who has a conflict of interest that receives huge compensation by “reviewing” the program? Probably not. They are not reviewing, but selling!

Therefore, I recommend reading the reviews of those written by the non-affiliates of Amway MLM.

2. Very Few People Can Make Money With Amway

Success is difficult to achieve with an MLM company like Amway.

You can look at the statistic that says 72.5 percent to 99.9 percent of MLM members lose money.

The reason for this is that MLMs have sales quotas that require members to continue selling products in order to remain active and eligible for commissions.

They will not be paid if they do not meet the quota.

As a result, many MLM members lose a significant amount of money before even recruiting one person into the company.

3. Losses From Amway MLM Are Reframed As Investments

Amway MLM uplines often reframe their financial losses as ‘investments’ in their business so as to keep their reps in an MLM scheme, dangling the carrot of future financial freedom. 

But the reality is that these are not investments. You are unlikely to get the money back. And the return on “investment” is negative in most cases. So saying that it’s an investment is cheating.

4. Amway MLM is a Cult

Why do people continue to work for Amway if it appears to be so bad? Our investigation of MLMs revealed that they all have cult-like company cultures.

Critical thinking is actively discouraged among MLM representatives. They are chastised and even isolated when they ask questions that deviate from the ‘this company is a-mazing’ mindset.

MLMs, like abusive partners, encourage you to isolate yourself from anyone who questions your involvement.

Those who leave an MLM are labeled as failures or bad people/influences, and reps are not allowed to contact them.

Rejection from people they once considered practically family is one of the most devastating losses experienced by former MLM representatives.

MLMs frequently expect their representatives to prioritize their events and business over their personal lives in order to further embed them in the business while separating them from their family and friends.

5. You May Need to Purchase Amway Products Yourself

If you don’t have a large network of friends, family, neighbors, and so on, you may have to buy products yourself each month. It’s a losing proposition all around.

I think it’s quite ridiculous when you have to buy the products you are trying to sell. But this is very common for people who join MLMs like Amway. That’s why in the long term, you are going to lose a lot of money, not to mention making money.

6. Amway Products are Overpriced

As with other MLMs, Amway offers overpriced products. There are many other brands that offer similar products but at lower prices.

Therefore, you may find it difficult to sell Amway products because your prospects can buy the same product elsewhere at a much cheaper price. This explains why most people who join MLMs only focus on recruitment instead of selling actual products.

7. Amway’s MLM Business Model Has a Bad Reputation

Some people have benefited financially by joining a network marketing/MLM company. Unfortunately, most people who join MLMs are left with nothing but regret and a lot of useless products that they were unable to sell.

MLM like Amway is fundamentally flawed. The distribution of commissions is skewed toward the top.

The majority of those in the top tier and pioneers make the most money, while those at the bottom will not even break even after a few months.

As a result, many people do not consider Amway to be a legitimate business opportunity.

8. Exaggerated Claims Of Income

Amway, like any other MLM company, makes exaggerated income claims, but in reality, very few people make a good living by promoting Amway.

Amway’s low retention rate can also be discouraging, as less than 41% of its distributors are active.

According to Amway’s payouts to distributors, over 99 percent of Amway distributors never make a profit.

9. Amway Is Like A Pyramid Scheme In Disguise

If you want to avoid losing money every month, the MLM will actually encourage you to recruit people.

Every system that requires you to recruit people in order to make money eventually looks like this.

Amway is not a pyramid scheme in the traditional sense because you can earn money by selling their products.

However, in order to make a living, you will need to hire others in reality.

10. Recruiting is Required to Succeed

I don’t recommend MLMs to people for this reason. MLMs like Amway put a lot of effort into recruiting. Eight out of ten ways to earn money with Amway require recruiting. If you don’t recruit, you are destined to lose money at the end of the day.

My #1 recommended platform is different. You can make a 4-figure, 5-figure or even 6-figure passive income by promoting and selling products you truly like. You don’t have to recruit people but recommend useful and great products. I will tell you more at the end of this Amway review.

11. Amway Representatives Have To Attend Expensive Events

The events Amway representatives were required to attend appear to be the most expensive.

A former representative stated that if they did not attend events, their Amway upline would withhold mentoring.

Attending these events was not cheap. An ex-rep stated that the cheapest ticket for an evening event was $70, which included dinner.

Weekend trips were also the most expensive, with tickets costing around $250 per person and including breakfast and lunch (dinner was on your own).

During events, you had to pay for travel and lodging as well. Flying across the country in the United States can cost thousands of dollars. According to one representative, long-distance events cost them between $4,500 and $5,000 each.

12. You Have to Pay Shipping Costs

You may not be aware as an Amway distributor that you will be responsible for all shipping and service charges. As a result, you will lose commission.

To calculate your actual income, subtract your commissions from any shipping costs.

13. The FTC’s Ruling Does Amway No Favors

Amway has been the subject of numerous investigations into illegal pyramid schemes over the course of their many years in business.

Pricing fixing, exaggerated income claims, and deceptive business practices are among the allegations.

Amway is currently being accused of operating an illegal pyramid scheme, which is one of the most common charges leveled against them.

Because of this, some people have dubbed it “Scamway.”

In 1998, the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) determined that Amway needed to improve its policies.

Although Amway is not a pyramid scheme, the FTC found that its commission policies were similar.

According to a 1979 Federal Trade Commission ruling, Amway does not directly compensate distributors for bringing on new distributors.

14. Amway Faces Many Lawsuits

Amway has previously faced class-action lawsuits. Among the lawsuits filed against Amway are:

  • Racketeering by Amway is a criminal offense
  • California’s “endless chain” law is violated by Amway
  • Consumers are deceived by Amway to enroll in its pyramid scheme, which results in financial loss for them
  • Wire fraud and mail fraud are committed by Amway

Amway MLM Pros

1. Registration Fees May Be Refunded

You can request a refund of your registration fees if you decide not to become an Amway IBO within 60-180 days.

2. Amway is Available in Many Countries

In addition to Europe, China, Japan, Korea, Australia, Southeast Asia, and the Americas, Amway operates in over 100 other countries.

3. Amway MLM Offers Free Courses

For your success, Amway offers free courses, podcasts, and presentations. The World Wide Dream Builders program is also available for an additional monthly fee.

4. Amway MLM Offers a Variety of Products

Amway has a wide range of products in its catalog. The company offers weight management, energy drinks, sports nutrition, home products, beauty products, and personal care.

5. Amway MLM Has a Long History

Direct selling association member and the world’s most successful MLM, Amway have been around for years.

As a result, you’d be joining a company that makes over $8 Billion a year.

It’s safe to say Amway products are here to stay, even though recent numbers haven’t been stellar.

6. Amway Product Quality is Good

If you still want to become an Amway Independent Business Owner, you can rest assured that you won’t have to worry about product quality.

As a consumer, you can enjoy their quality and useful products without even being interested in selling their products.

7. Training Materials are Good

You learn a thing or two when you’ve played the network marketing game for so long.

There are a number of different training materials that Amway provides free of charge, so that you can advance your MLM career.

There are online courses, podcasts, webinars, and live presentations to choose from.

Yes, everything has been updated for the 21st century. In the past, you would have to pass on black and white brochures to friends and family as prospective distributors.

Along with that training, you can also attend live events and buy Business Support Materials (BSM’s) from your upline.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Do Some Countries Ban Amway MLM?

In the US, Amway is not against the law. Even so, it is against the law in the UK because it was found that Amway makes more money by selling to their distributors than by selling directly to customers.

It is also being closely looked at by the Indian police. They have even caught some higher-up representatives who were taking part in an illegal pyramid scheme.

Currently, Amway is leaping through legal difficulties all over the place to keep operations going in the US. But, like in India and the UK, it seems likely that Amway’s time in business is coming to an end.

How Much Does It Cost To Join Amway MLM?

You do not have to pay anything to join Amway, but you will need to purchase a certain amount of products to get started.

These items are available in the form of starter kits. It is also possible to purchase random items to assemble your own starter kit.

You will need to invest around $100 in order to get started.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Amway MLM Positive and Negative Feedbacks By Real Users

Positive Feedbacks

  • The starter kit comes with a good money-back guarantee.
  • They have agreements with companies such as Lego and Microsoft.

Negative Feedbacks

  • Amway has had a few run-ins with the law.
  • They were eventually forced to pay $56 million to settle a case in which they were accused of running a pyramid scheme.
  • Their compensation plans do not assist many people in making money.
  • Only about 3% of members earn enough money to support themselves.
  • Some people still believe Amway is a pyramid scheme.

Is Amway MLM a Scam?

I cannot say Amway MLM is a scam for legal reasons. A scam is defined as “a dishonest scheme; a fraud” by the Oxford Living Dictionary. 

Can you make money selling Amway products? We already know that a majority of Amway reps did not earn any money. A few people do make money but only if you put in a lot of effort. And usually, the way they make a lot of money from Amway is by recruiting aggressively.

Also, Amway blatantly makes disingenuous and irresponsible marketing claims to recruit members. Therefore, some people do consider Amway MLM a scam.

My #1 recommended platform, however, has seen a lot of beginners earn four figures a month after joining it for a year.

I will tell more about my #1 recommended platform at the end of this review.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Final Verdict: Amway MLM Review

Here comes the conclusion of my Amway MLM review. Overall, I don’t recommend joining Amway MLM to make money.

You will have a tough time at the beginning when you are prospecting and trying to find recruiters to add to your Amway commission.

The worst part is that you practically have to ask your family and friends to join your Amway business opportunity. It’s not fun.

Your upline is constantly following up with you to encourage you to buy more Business Support Material even as you struggle to get people to join your downline.

The reality is that you’re likely to lose more money. Statistics confirm this as well. 99% of people who join an MLM break even or lose money, according to a case study on the FTC’s website.

People who join these MLM-type businesses often feel under pressure to succeed, and that is one of the main reasons they leave. 

Why not consider starting your own online business if you want to earn money and have a flexible schedule? 

Thus, you can choose what you want to promote rather than having someone tell you what you must promote.

Let me tell you how to build an online business in a legit way to make passive income online in the next section. This has allowed me to make a full-time income in a year. Most importantly, unlike MLM models, It’s 100% legit and sustainable.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

The Best Alternative of Amway MLM To Make Passive Income Online

If you’re beginning your online business journey, you deserve a programme much better than Amway MLM.

My #1 recommended platform is called Wealthy Affiliate.

Wealthy Affiliate is an all-in-one platform for building your affiliate marketing business from scratch.

When you join Wealthy Affiliate, you can get access to the first-class web hosting service, keyword research tools, community support, comprehensive training, writing tools, and other software to help you build an online business step-by-step.

You can register a free account with Wealthy Affiliate, which enables you to get started with affiliate marketing right away without paying a penny.

If you like the platform, you can then upgrade to the premium membership to get access to everything on the platform. There are no upsells afterwards.

But How Much Can You Earn with Wealthy Affiliate?

A 21-year old student from Wealthy Affiliate was able to earn $7,395 in just 1 week, which means he made more than $1k a day…all while applying what is taught inside Wealthy Affiliate.

Amway MLM Review

Compared with Authority Hacker, Wealthy Affiliate has a much longer history, which has been established for 15 years and there are many success stories in the past decade. Actually, Wealthy Affiliate has more than a million members so far, so you can see how popular this platform is.

To give you more examples, here are some of the other inspiring success stories of Wealthy Affiliate members.

Where to Join Wealthy Affiliate?

Wealthy Affiliate has a very simple pricing scheme. It has a free and premium membership. The premium membership only costs $49/month or $395/year.

If you want to feel about Wealthy Affiliate, you can sign up for the free starter membership here (no credit card required). You can select to be a free member with no time limit.

And as a starter member, you can get instant access to the community, live chat, over 500 training modules, 2 classrooms, networking, commenting, 1 free website, access to the keyword tool.

You can enjoy all these values without paying a penny.

So I strongly recommend you to register a free account and see it yourself.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Amway MLM Review FAQs

1. Is Amway A Direct Selling Business?

Amway is both a direct selling business and an MLM with over a million distributors in over 100 countries.

2. Is Amway Worth Joining?

Here are a few questions to ask yourself:

  • Would you want to be a part of a company that causes you to practically ask family and friends to join it?
  • What do you think about Amway business owners making $200 a month on average?
  • Are you willing to throw away a lot of money?
  • Would you like to sell Amway forever?

If all four of these questions were answered no, Amway isn’t right for you.

3. What Makes Multi Level Marketing Companies Like Scams?

Even if MLM companies aren’t technically scams, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll make as much money as they lead you to believe before joining.

Because of all the upsells that many multilevel marketing companies offer to “simplify your success,” you may end up being net negative.

This is all a marketing ploy used by your upline to sell you Amway business products.

4. How Do You Quit Amway?

You can leave Amway by calling the customer service number or sending an email notifying the company.

If you don’t want to deal with Amway support or reach out to them on social media, your best bet is to simply wait for your registration to expire at the end of the year.

5. What is the Federal Trade Commission’s Opinion About Amway?

The FTC didn’t say much. Only that Amway wasn’t technically a scam.

6. What Are The Signs Of An Amway Pitch?

What steps can you take to avoid being approached by an Amway representative? They practice the FORM conversation taught to them on the Married to an Ambot blog. If they steer the conversation in this direction, it could be that they are preparing you for an MLM sales pitch.

FORM works as follows:

  • Ask about their family and whether or not they have enough time to spend with them.
  • Get to know their occupation and if they are looking for a change.
  • Find out how much time they would like to spend on their hobbies and what they do for fun.
  • Ask if they need more money for buying things, paying off debt, or funding dreams.

7. Why Is Amway Banned In The US?

Amway is not currently banned in the United States.

The UK banned it after discovering that Amway makes more money by selling to distributors rather than directly to customers.

It is also being closely scrutinized in India. Some distributors have even been arrested for allegedly participating in illegal pyramid schemes.

Amway is currently jumping through legal hoops left and right in order to continue operations in the United States. Amway’s days are likely numbered, as they are in India and the United Kingdom.

Recommendation: Here’s The Best Alternative

Leave a Comment