I gave Amway Scandinavia a bit of a slam the other day for some of their partner store pricing and it provoked some interesting comments. What seems clear is some markets seem to do a good job of setting up good deals for ABOs, others are not so good at it. I’m curious as to how these deals are setup and who is consulted. My feeling is if it’s not obviously a good deal when a new ABO or prospect looks at it, then the deal shouldn’t be done at all. It matters – I’m sure I’m not alone amongst ABOs in having had prospects return waving printouts of supposed “price comparisons” done by anti-Amway zealots and claiming the whole thing was a rip-off. I’m fundamentally lazy – why make Amway harder than it has to be?
So, in the interests of making it easier, and a more positive note for Amway Europe, here’s a price comparison I did recently (2009-08-20) of a range of Amway products in the UK. I did the comparison after a critic I was engaged in debate with claimed that with outlets like Tesco and ADSA –
“(the price of) Amway products (in the UK) are so out of kilter as to be ludicrous.”
One of the regulars on AmwayTalk, MichMan, often passes Amway world headquarters in Ada, Michigan. He sent me this photo of a great billboard that’s up nearby. When he first mentioned it in the AmwayTalk forums, another poster, Deb, mentioned that Amway introduced the word “biodegradable” to the world with it’s first product, L.O.C. – Liquid Organic Concentrate. L.O.C. was one of the first commercially marketed biodegradeable cleaning products, meaning it’s components break down safely without damaging the environment.
I thought that sounded a little hyperbolic, Amway introduced “biodegradable” to the world? I know they’ve been “green” since the beginning, but that seemed a stretch. Then I started digging. I found this source that says the first known use of the word “biodegradable” was in a scientific text in 1961, barely a year or so after the founding of Amway. I then found sources from 1962, 1963, and 1964 (link broken) that all mentioned Amway marketing biodegradable products – that’s within a year of the first known use of the word. Continue reading Amway: Part of the green movement. Before there was one.→
Even accounting for this, SA8 will tend to be a little more expensive than most competitors. I work it out at 19 cents per wash for the standard SA8 package , with normal use at members pricing. Now, it quite obviously is the best cleaner, but there’s more to SA8 than just it’s cleaning power! It’s up to Amway and Quixtar IBOs to educate their customers about why it’s better, and below is one suggested demonstration
As you can see from the demonstration, SA8 rinses out better than the competitors, leaving less residual in your clothes. Why is this important? Well, one of the main jobs of detergents is to break down fats. Every cell in your body has fat in the cell wall. Your nerves are coated in fat, which protect and insulate the nerve cells. Your brain is more than 60% fat. Fat is an essential part of your body. While we don’t want too much of “bad fats” such as saturated fats and trans-fatty acids, we do need “good fats”. Detergent can’t tell the difference. Think about what happens when you put some dish washing liquid in a pan where you’ve been cooking with fats or oils. Now imagine that happening to the cells in your body! While not quite so dramatic, research has linked detergent residuals in clothing to a range of health issues, in particular allergies. Similarly, one can look at water softeners, often added to detergents to help cleansing. Water softeners are usually salts like Sodium or Pottasium. Both are corrosive to your clothes and your skin. SA8 might cost a few cents extra, but it cleans the best, it’s better for you, better for your clothes, and better for your families health. I know what’s most important to me, so my choice is clear.
SA8 with Bioquest , available exclusively from Amway and Quixtar Independent Business Owners, topped the ratings of the soon to be published January 2007 “Laundry detergents” comparison from Consumer Reports . SA8 scored a possible 99 out of 100 points, putting it 15% better than the next best rated detergent, Tide with Bleach, with 87 points. SA8 with Bioquest was the only detergent to rate “excellent” in all three categories – Cleaning, Keeps Dirt Off, Keeps Dye Off.
The Consumer Reports study did have some flaws however. First of all, it reports SA8 with BioQuest is only available for purchase online via Quixtar.com. This is incorrect – SA8 is available from any of the hundreds of thousands of registered Quixtar Independent Business Owners throughout North America, or any of the millions of Amway Independent Business throughout the world.
Consumer Reports also claims the “price per wash” of SA8 at full retail price was 61 cents. I am unable to see how they made that calculation. In the United States, SA8 with Bioquest is available in a variety of forms, with pricing as follows –
cost per use
It’s also interesting to note that Consumer Reports picks as one of their “best buys”, Kirkland Signature Ultra from CostCo. CostCo is a members only shopping club, and the yearly membership fee is higher than for Quixtar. Thus, when comparing CostCo to Quixtar pricing, it should be done at members only price.
The full comparison chart is below. (apologies for the formatting)