How can I make money from home?

Posted at 10:50 PM, Nov 23, 2015

According to the Direct Selling Association, 18.2 million people across the country are involved in direct selling.

In Florida, the DSA shows there are 1,057,213 people involved in the industry, bringing in $1.66 billion in 2014.

One of those people is Katie Myers.

Katie sells clothing for the California-based LulaRoe clothing line.

"I'm making more with LulaRoe than I ever have before," Katie says.

She got involved with the company a few months ago, after learning about it through a friend on social media.

Katie got involved in direct selling because she had to quit her job last year to take care of her son at home.

Her son, Kaden, was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy several months after birth.

"It became very evident, very fast, that I needed to be home with him."

Through social media, Katie is able to host "pop-up parties" where she sells the clothes online.

"I'm making anywhere between $1,000 and $3,000 profit per party and I have two parties per week," she says.

Katie devotes at least twenty to thirty hours a week selling clothes, but says you can still do it from home while working a typical 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. job.

"You definitely need to be a go-getter. There isn't going to be someone waking up and telling you to set your goals and go after them. You're the one that needs to do that every single day," she says.

Ronalee Orlick is also involved in direct sales, along with her two other jobs.

She works as a bartender at a local hotel and does bookkeeping for an agency in Wellington.

In her spare time, she sells jewelry for Chloe and Isabel.

She says her sales are made mostly in-person, rather than online.

"Seeing it in person makes a big difference. It's not justifiable online and in the catalogs," Ronalee says.

The newly single mother of two says she works so much so she can help provide for her family.

"I'm just trying to make ends meet, and give my kids a lifestyle that we're used to."

Sarah Criser is also involved in direct sales.

She works for Rodan and Fields, selling skincare products.

"This is kind of an escape for me in some ways because, what's more fun than skin care and making people feel good about themselves?"

Sarah works full-time at a marketing firm. When she has free time after work, or on the weekends, she sells Rodan and Fields products online.

"The company is really what you put into it. If you want to treat it like a hobby, it will play you like a hobby. If you treat it like a full time job, you can see the possibilities and opportunities that come as a result," Sarah says.

While each business can appear to be very lucrative, Rod Davis of the Better Business Bureau says you should do your research before signing up with a company.

"You have to believe in the product. You have to feel confident it's something you can sell," he says.

Rod says someone interested in direct selling needs to know what the up-front investment is before signing up to work for a company.

Also, find out what the refund policy is. If a product isn't selling well, you need to know if you can return it to the company.

He says to stay away from products that promise something that seems too good to be true.

"A product should be able to sell itself on the good effects it brings, how well it works," Rod says.

When you're doing your research on different companies, you can use the BBB Scam Tracker  to find out if a company is legitimate or not.

Direct selling isn't for everyone.

Rod says most companies don't provide health insurance for employees because they're considered contracted workers.

He adds that it takes someone with an out-going personality to be successful at this type of work.

Each of the women involved in direct selling agreed that the more time you put into it, the more likely you are to be successful at it.