If you love health supplements and other health related products you may have come across Herbalife over the years. Herbalife has a wide range of products sold through direct marketing. Perhaps you were introduced to these products through a friend or work associate. You might even consider becoming a distributor for this company. This Herbalife MLM review will take you through how it works and the products as well as the good and bad things you should be aware of. So before you sign up to be a distributor, you should be well informed first. Read on.
What is Herbalife MLM?
Herbalife was founded in 1980 by Mark Hughes and has its headquarters in Los Angeles, CA. This MLM (multi-level marketing) company employs over 9,000 people worldwide. The products are available in over 94 countries and has over 4.5 million members and distributors.
The company originally started by selling weight loss products and their first product was a protein shake that was supposed to help people manage their weight. The product line expanded into other areas such as women’s health, aging, digestive health, fitness and more. The company has since grown into a multi-million dollar company.
Are Herbalife Products Worth Their Price?
Herbalife has a wide selection of products including supplements, teas, weight management products, protein powders, personal care products, protein bars and more.
One of their core products is the Herbalife Formula 1 Healthy Meal powder. This is a shake that is made with two scoops of powder. It’s supposed to replace two meals a day in order to help you lose weight. This 26-ounce package will cost around $40 depending on where you buy it. The Herbalife website lists it for $42.85. Amazon lists it for $40 so the price is comparable.
This product has good reviews on Amazon with many people citing that they have lost weight by drinking these shakes. Each shake takes two scoops of powder so that’s four scoops each day.
Let’s Do the Math
According to the Amazon reviews, the Herbalife powder only lasts two weeks. The container is 26.4 ounces. Let’s round off the product price to $40. That’s $1.52 per ounce.
There’s a similar product sold on Amazon for half the price. It’s called Orgain Organic Protein Powder and sells for $26.99. It comes in a 2 lb. container. That’s $0.83 per ounce.
The ingredients in the Orgain Organic Protein are certified USDA organic, gluten free, vegan, and lactose free. I could not find any comparable information for the Herbalife Formula 1 Protein Powder. Both products can be used for weight loss while following an exercise program.
So to answer the question of whether the Herbalife products are worth their price, I’d have to say that there are other comparable products out there that are equal or better in quality and price. So depending on the product, Herbalife products could be a hard sell.
The Herbalife MLM Opportunity
The way Herbalife works is typical of MLMs. You would sign up under a distributor who would be your sponsor and purchase a member pack. You would then become part of their down line and can start selling products. Your sponsor would receive commissions from the products you sell. For distributors outside the U.S., you can register online and mail in the documents to your country’s Member Services.
How Much Does It Cost to Join Herbalife?
To sign up you need to purchase a Herbalife Distributor Kit. There are two different kits you can choose. The International Business Pack costs $94.10 or the International Business Pack-Super Starter for a cost of $124.10.
Other costs would be the hidden costs. These are costs that are not part of your distributor agreement such as your time, the cost of phone calls, and gas to/from customers.
Can You Make Money with Herbalife?
In order to make money with Herbalife, you have to both sell products and recruit new distributors. You can’t simply recruit people and leave the work to them. As a distributor, you buy products at a 25% discount and sell them at the retail price. This gives you a 25% commission.
One incentive you can give prospective customers is the offer of a 25% discount if they sign up as an Herbalife member. This will cost a customer a one-time initial payment of $34.99 which covers the cost of the Preferred member pack. The membership will renew for your customers each year for $15.
So there are a few different ways you can approach this opportunity in order to make money. Just keep in mind that this is commissions only. There’s no base pay.
Set Your Own Schedule
Direct selling models are attractive to people who want a flexible work schedule. You can choose to work part-time after putting in a full days’ work or dive in with a full-time commitment.
No Minimum Monthly Purchases
While there may be no minimum monthly purchases, as a distributor, you will have to continue to buy products each month to maintain your distributor status.
If you choose to cancel your Distributorship, all products are fully refundable as long as the products have not been opened.
No Sales Tools
No obligation to buy sales tools or business tools when you sign up.
No FDA Approval
FDA has not approved these products. They have however inspected the products. Unfortunately, Herbalife cited FDA approval in one of its videos back in 2014. This prompted a response from the FDA to immediately stop spreading false information that the products had FDA approval.
Herbalife products are pricey when compared to other similar products. As indicated above, the protein powder is more expensive when compared to a similar Amazon product. Other products such as the Herbalife SKIN Collagen Beauty Booster is a product that “promote your skin’s health from within for visibly younger looking skin.” This is a drink supplement that comes in Strawberry lemonade flavour and is priced at $49.40 for a 6-ounce canister.
Herbalife has an A- rating with the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and only a 2 1/4 star rating. There are not a lot of reviews but the reviews are revealing. Customers who have purchased the products gave mixed reviews. The distributors who wrote reviews were definitely not happy.
Herbalife has responded to only one of the complaints listed on the BBB website out of the six that were listed.
In my research, I found that there have been a number of lawsuits against Herbalife. The BBB website even has an alert listed for Herbalife. The alert outlines misrepresentation of Herbalife’s business model as a direct selling organization in China.
Another lawsuit is a class action lawsuit against Herbalife from distributors who have filed complaints that the company misrepresented the amount of money they can make. Distributors were also told that anyone who attends the “Circle of Success” events will get rich. Many distributors in the suit not only didn’t get rich, they also lost a lot of their own money.
Is Herbalife MLM a Scam?
There are plenty of reasons why you may want to give this particular opportunity a pass. The lawsuits alone would make anyone think twice. The products are expensive and may be a tough sell to customers. I can’t say definitively that Herbalife is a scam but I also think there’s plenty of warning here.
The one thing that always concerns me about MLMs like this is that there’s no base salary. It’s strictly commission based. There’s a lot of work involved before you ever see a commission check. If you are looking for a way to make extra money with a flexible schedule, check out my #1 recommendation on how to start your own business. You’ll get plenty of support, training, a website and hosting along with a ton of great tools to help you succeed.