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Direct Selling | Direct Selling explained

Direct Selling is a professional distribution channel that offers entrepreneurial and income generating opportunities. Rebates are earned through your personal sales to customers as well as from sales made by your own sales team.

Direct Sellers (independent contractors that are also referred to as distributors, consultants, managers, sales agents, and independent business operators, amongst others) are micro-entrepreneurs who market and sell products and services, typically outside of a fixed retail establishment, through one-to-one selling, group product demonstrations/presentations (also referred to as Party Plan) or a combination and with online support. It’s all about personal relationships.

Income is ultimately based on sales and may be earned based on personal sales and also from the sales of others in the direct seller’s own downline sales team. Involvement in the business generally includes selling products to their own customer base and managing sales made through their sales downline team. They are also involved with providing training and leadership to their sales team, referrals and purchasing products and services for personal use.   

Single-Level Direct Selling, Multi-Level Marketing (MLM), Network Marketing and Referral Marketing are all selling systems, which offer a variety of compensation plans (financial reward) and marketing/administrative systems, individual to each DSA member company. 

Single-Level Direct Selling is the sale of products directly to a wide customer base and earning financial rebates or volume discounts on all products they have individually sold.   

Multi-Level Marketing, Network Marketing, Structure Marketing or Multilevel Direct Selling have proven over many years to be a highly successful and effective methods of compensating Direct Sellers for the marketing and distribution of products and services directly to consumers. Direct Sellers can earn money not only on their own personal sales, but also on their team sales - other direct sellers whom they have recruited into their business. It’s based on the premise that any individual’s sales performance can be multiplied by using the efforts of others. As a multi-level marketer, the direct seller is often a product user themselves and is selling products to a small base of their own customers as well as recruiting, training and developing their own team of direct sellers, who do the same. Income is generated from sales made across these various levels. 

Hybrid Systems are emerging as more single-level direct selling companies now use elements of multilevel marketing as they recognise its potential for exponential growth. Over half of the direct selling companies worldwide and almost all new direct selling companies are multilevel. 

Referral Marketing is where Direct Sellers earn an income from referring customers to an organisation, with the intention of buying products and services from that organisation.

Methods of Direct Selling include the traditional party-plan and group presentations where multiple sales are made to the customers attending these events.  Although often held at an individual’s home, the event can also be at an office or community centre (generally away from a fixed retail outlet). One-to-One selling is where direct sellers sell products and promote the business opportunity directly to individuals/customers in the home, office or workplace (generally away from a fixed retail outlet).

Direct Selling should not be confused with Direct Marketing/Telesales/Direct Mail

Although direct selling organisations sometimes use direct marketing or distance selling techniques and technology to enhance their businesses, the primary difference between the two methods of marketing is the face to face, or personal presentation that is always an aspect of the direct selling relationship.