I started my journey and turned in my paperwork to become a LuLaRoe consultant back in April 2016. After spending a total of 12 weeks in the queue, I finally got the call and was able to place my first order. At first it felt like the 12 weeks would take forever to get through, but I was thankful that I had the chance to prepare and get things set up for my business for the best start possible. My husband was so supportive and totally on board; he even talked about the business opportunity with people he would meet in the community. I was so excited! I bought clothing racks, researched legging storage solutions, created awesome displays for sizing and pricing…
And then I got the call! I placed my order and waited for that first delivery (so much anticipation!). I had my first sale via Periscope on July 1st and quickly sold over $1,000 of clothing. This was with poor lighting, a tiny Yorkie that kept trying to sit on my feet and who I accidentally squished with a clothing box at one point (she’s totally fine), and a noisy ceiling fan (it was so hot that night!).
I went full on LuLaRoe from that point forward right up until August 2017.
Why I Joined LuLaRoe in the First Place
I’m both a fan of and not a fan of traditional network marketing and direct sales. I feel like the business model can be right for a very select number of people who are passionate and committed enough to build a business and push through rejection. While I do not have the necessary personality to market and sell the business side of a network marketing opportunity to other people, I did love the clothing itself and felt like I could sell the actual clothes to people who wanted them.
And people wanted the clothes in July 2017. There were several highly sought out prints and even the less then desirable prints (to me) were easy to sell for full price at that time. Before I joined LuLaRoe, I had noticed what was going on with the clothing on eBay and was intrigued that items were selling for quite a bit of money there. I felt like LuLaRoe would continue to position the product in a positive way and that the value would remain high. It seemed as though it was only starting to take off.
I also felt like LuLaRoe had a solid business plan and that they would not allow an unlimited number of consultants to join the company in order to keep demand high and supply low. I truly thought I needed to hurry up and sign up as they could close out further sign ups by new consultants at any time. This seems silly to me now but I really felt like this was a possibility due to information I had read about how they operated as a new company.
I liked that the opportunity seemed like a relatively low risk. When I first signed up, the company would buy back unsold inventory at a large percentage (I think 80%) if you decided that the business was not right for you.
My Experience Selling LuLaRoe
My experience selling LuLaRoe was overwhelmingly positive at first. My initial success that first night led to further success selling the clothing both online and at in person vendor events.
While I found it easy at first to sell a large volume of clothing, I found it just as easy to get caught up in the seasonal sales events and ended up purchasing huge amounts of 4th of July and Valentines leggings and other clothing items that I’m still stuck with right now. Even retailing around $40,000 that first year and then $16,000 the second year (only selling part-time until July 2017), I was still finding it difficult to stay even financially overall.
What I Learned Selling LuLaRoe
Here are several of my best tips for new LuLaRoe consultants:
- When signing up for a vendor event, take some time to consider the target population of people who would most likely be attending the event before committing to the event. I had a much different experience selling at an event marketed towards people in an upscale neighborhood (sold $1,500 in one day) then I did at an event held in a poorer neighborhood and offering highly discounted items (only made back my booth fees over a three-day period).
- Consistency is important. You must commit to regularly sharing and connecting with your Facebook group. There is so much competition in LuLaRoe consultants that it is vitally important that you gain the loyalty and trust of your customer.
- Your reputation is valuable. I’ve seen consultant’s businesses killed with one stupid move on social media. Our Facebook lives and sales are recorded and our posts are screenshotted. One insensitive remark or “joke” is all it takes to destroy your business. Be mindful of this and careful about the image you project to the outside world; your brand must be protected at all costs.
Why I Quit LuLaRoe
I stopped selling LuLaRoe for several reasons:
- The clothing just wasn’t as popular anymore and it became harder and harder to sell. LuLaRoe had on boarded way too many consultants and the market was flooded with clothing. It began to get hard to compete for business, especially if I wasn’t constantly refreshing my inventory and buying more items.
- The boxes that I ordered began coming with less desirable prints and it started to get more scary than exciting when I was unpacking boxes.
- It got expensive. There was quite a bit of pressure to keep up with new releases, both seasonal releases and new clothing lines. I never felt like I was getting ahead or anywhere near a point where I could take out any profit. I was just putting more and more money into getting new clothing to keep my customers happy, and was left with more and more hard to sell clothing. The awesome prints sold right away, which led to some money coming in, but the number of “ugly” or hard to sell prints just keep increasing in my collection at a similar or higher rate then amazing, easy to sell prints were coming in.
- It was physically hard work and I was seeing less and less of a return on time investment for the time I was spending on the business. It is physically difficult to drag multiple boxes of clothing and racks around to people’s homes and vendor events multiple times per month. It is absolutely no joke and this must be considered for anyone who is thinking about starting a LuLaRoe business. I had been in a car accident in January 2016 which had caused damage to the vertebrae in my neck and lifting was pretty much out of the question. My husband was super supportive and helpful during the vendor events but bending and moving the clothing around the racks was still taking quite the toll on my health.
- My home situation changed. In June 2017 we began the process of getting approval to care for our youngest granddaughter in our home. We officially became foster parents in August 2017 (our situation was unique as our son was living with us at the time and was also helping to care for his daughter). Having a little person in the house again full-time was a huge blessing and I saw an immediate shift to what was important to me at that point in my life. It was suddenly hugely important to me that I spend ever minute possible with my granddaughter and that I was available for all the big and small moments of her life. LuLaRoe was in an instant not a priority to me anymore.
- I still enjoyed my other businesses more. When I started, I could see the potential in LuLaRoe, but I ended up forgetting what I actually loved doing in the process. I did love the clothing and it did feel like a treasure hunt whenever I would get new boxes in the mail. But the treasure hunt was the main thing that I also loved about eBay and let’s face it, the profit margins are much greater on the eBay side. I was also getting a bit tired of only wearing LuLaRoe and started having the desire to add thrifted fashion back into my life.
I believe that LuLaRoe is a good business for the right person. If you love the product, are willing to do the work necessary to build up a loyal group and understand fully what you are getting into with the amount of work (including the huge amount of physical work) necessary, then I believe you can find success joining LuLaRoe as a consultant. However, because the financial and time commitment required is much higher than other direct sales companies, it is vitally important that you consider all the factors involved as it can put a huge strain on both your relationships and finances. Remember that most people who join a network marketing or direct sales company end up losing more money then they earn overall. Considering that the investment to join LuLaRoe is several thousand dollars, this can end up putting a huge strain on your relationship with your spouse and have a huge impact on your credit if you end up charging initial or ongoing inventory costs. Please be very very careful before deciding whether this is the right business for you.
If you’re interested in learning more about how I earn money with eBay, click here.
If you’re interested in learning what platform I use to make money with affiliate marketing/blogging click here.
Let me know by commenting below if you are a current LuLaRoe consultant with tips for beginners or if you have considered joining and have any questions.