Direct sales outlook 2015

Buying online over buying from retail stores

The direct selling industry has experienced a steady increase in retail sales since 2009, with a 5.9 percent increase between 2011 and 2012 (most recent statistical year available) according to the Direct Selling Association (DSA). In the U.S., an estimated 15.9 million people are involved in direct sales, and approximately 80 percent of them are women.

My company, Lemongrass Spa Products, is no exception, boasting a 65 percent increase in sales force in 2014. The industry growth trend continues as consumers move toward buying from small and local retailers, as direct selling companies offer a variety of quality products, and as people look for flexible income avenues.

The direct selling industry will continue to experience growth in 2015 because of key economic indicators, a continuing surge in internet purchases, social media and the increasingly popular direct selling model. Generation Xers and Millennials have found the extra income they can earn by having a direct selling business satisfies their need to supplement their income.

Competition for well-paying jobs is at an all-time high, and college graduates are discovering that the direct selling industry offers an entrepreneurial path to success. Baby boomers find the direct sales’ business model is easily adaptable into their lifestyles, can offset health care expenses and provides invaluable social connections.

Many direct selling companies have done an effective job of reforming the image of today’s direct seller away from one who is pushy, old-fashioned and dishonest to one who is trendy, successful, educated and legitimate. We’re finding that social media plays an integral role in helping build a brand and in improving the perception of direct selling by helping to establish a personal connection through the use of an electronic medium.

The social media venue is geared toward supporting our philosophy of sharing and caring – whether it’s sharing the lifestyle, the products or the income opportunity. Sparking change in the perceptions of consumers’ minds can happen with an increase in positive messaging, media attention focused on the positive impact of direct sellers, and consultants who are trained to uphold ethical business practices. We tailor our content to touch on at least one of these areas each time we post.

How does Lemongrass Spa Products stay relevant and evolve in a changing direct sales landscape? Our goal has been to continually improve our product line by adding innovative, affordable and healthy products that capture the attention of our customers. Consumers of our products are generally well-educated when it comes to the ingredients we use, so we are continuing to find ways to anticipate their needs and meet their expectations regarding value and outstanding quality.  

We want to make it easier than ever for our new consultants to earn money right away and build the incomes they desire. Through a combination of social media and face-to-face events such as our #HostASpaPartyDay, which we initiated in January 2015, we plan to educate a broader audience on the importance of choosing healthy products they use daily.

All indication is that 2015’s industry outlook will be strong. Whatever the reasons for joining a direct sales company—from earning extra income, making new connections or just having fun—there is no better time to be involved in the direct sales industry.

Categories: Sales & Marketing