For those wondering whether Stella & Dot is a pyramid scheme-ish scam or a good business opportunity, this review was written to give you all the answers you need.
Stella and Dot in a nutshell
Someone emailed me a while ago asking me to write a review about the Stella and Dot business opportunity. Due to having a packed schedule, I couldn’t come around to writing this review until now.
After doing my own investigation into the company, I decided to see how other reviews have described the company and I must confess that I feel most were unfairly harsh. I couldn’t disagree more with what most review sites have said about Stella and Dot.
I am not giving this company such high marks because it’s going to be easy to make money. As a matter of fact, I know for sure that it will not be easy. This company gets this rating because among all the MLM companies I have reviewed, they are one of the few that operate like a real company.
This is a fashion company that, like Asos and Boohoo, sells real products, ships to normal customers, has a return & refund policy and also has an affiliate program. The difference between Stella and Dot and the other companies is that they offer people who are interested the opportunity to become stylists themselves.
Although the business opportunity is far from perfect, the company is by no means big on recruiting people into the company or even particularly dependent on the business opportunity at all.
In this review, I will be covering the ins and outs of this opportunity and sharing how I would promote Stella and Dot both as a stylist and as an affiliate.
I understand that some people might not be able to sit through this long review for reasons known to them. If you’re one of such people, please sit tight for a minute and go through the following point-form roundup of some important things to know about the company:
- Stella and Dot is a real company that sells jewelry and fashion accessories
- The business opportunity side of the company operates an MLM business model
- To become a stylist, you will need to invest between $199 and $699 on a starter kit
- There is a $59 yearly renewal fee to remain a stylist
- Stylists make 20%-35% commissions on sales
- They do not have to purchase inventory
- They are no sales minimums to remain a stylist
- The company’s preferred method of making sales is by organizing trunk shows
- If you are comfortable getting leads and selling products via trunk shows, you can go on and become a stylist now.
- If you prefer to promote Stella and Dot’s products, or any other products for that matter, from the comfort of your home, build your own online business now.
What is Stella and Dot?
Founded in 2004 as Luxe Jewels, and later re-branded as Stella and Dot in 2007, this is a company that sells jewelry and fashion accessories. It was founded by Jessica Herrin.
Whenever I’m looking into a business opportunity, I always check out the products first.
The quality and marketability of the products usually go a long way in helping me determine if the company is a pyramid scheme or not.
Well, guess what?
I think Stella and Dot offers quality products at reasonable prices. In fact, I was so impressed by one of their products that I had to order it for my girlfriend.
Another thing I found while I was on their website was a page showing celebrities that have put on some of their products.
I mentioned earlier that I read some reviews about this company and I saw some complain about the quality and price of the products. I don’t know what they’re on about.
In my opinion, the products are top notch and reasonably priced. This is a good thing from a potential stylist’s point of view.
The only problem you might encounter with being a stylist promoting the products is being able to find regular leads. The products are great but in order to make anything substantial as a stylist, the one thing you must do is get leads consistently.
The company recommends you host a few trunk shows each month. It’s simply a recommendation and not a requirement, as many sites have wrongly stated.
The idea behind a trunk show is you invite your friends and family to your house or another venue and you showcase product samples to them. If they like the products, orders could be placed during the trunk show or they could purchase directly from the stylist if they keep inventory.
The stylist could also get friends and family to host trunk shows at their place and invite as many people as they can. For every sale made at the trunk show, the stylist gets a commission while the hosts get discounts and free stuff. It’s a win-win for both the stylist and the host.
If you are confident you can reach a lot of people via trunk shows, by all means, go for it. Personally, I am not a big fan of hosting trunk shows/parties. I think it’s too traditional and out-dated. Fortunately, there is no recurring monthly cost for stylists and this frees them from the pressure of having to meet a monthly demand.
Why should I have to host anything when I could use the internet to get a constant stream of leads? I’ll talk more about this when I discuss how I’d promote Stella and Dot.
The Business Opportunity
I’ve had many reps/distributors (stylists in this case) of companies I have reviewed come here and say I think everything related to MLM is a scam. This is 100% false. I have reviewed some legit MLM companies on this website.
I do not think there is anything wrong with a company compensating people for promoting its products. In fact, I think this is a cheaper medium than regular advertising.
What I require is for the company to do its job to the consumers and not make the entire company about the business opportunity. I want the company to not exploit its reps/distributors by forcing them to stock inventory or pay monthly auto-ship charges for products they do not need. Lastly, the business opportunity should be about the products rather than recruiting.
Do all these and you have a completely legitimate MLM company in my opinion. Stella and Dot has managed to pull this off easily.
Stella and Dot is big on their products. The trunk shows are supposed to be a showcase of the products the company offers and not a gathering to sell you false dreams.
Since it’s an MLM, if someone decides to become a stylist through you, they will automatically become part of your team/downline. I don’t have a problem with that.
Focus on promoting the products and naturally, some people will love the products enough to want to promote them as well. This is how the company has designed the structure to be. Do not focus on just going out to get people to become stylists.
In order to become a stylist, you will have to invest on a starter kit. Here are the different starter kits:
- Essentials Kit: This costs $199 but contains $350 worth of jewelry and accessories
- More to Love Kit: This costs $499 but contains $1000 worth of jewelry and accessories
- Ultimate Kit: This costs $699 but contains $1500 worth of jewelry and accessories
If you choose to build a team, you are required to achieve at least 500 PQV in retail sales at least once every three months. If you fail to achieve this, you will still remain a stylist but your team will be passed up to the next qualified person in your upline.
Stella and Dot Compensation Plan
Stylists earn 25%-35% commissions on personal sales and up to 18% bonuses on team sales. Payments are made weekly through the company’s debit card.
What I liked
- Stella and Dot runs like a proper company
- The products are great quality and reasonably priced
- The priority of the company is to promote the products rather than the business opportunity
- Stylists do not have to keep inventory
- There are no recurring monthly charges
- All these make the cost of becoming a stylist relatively cheap compared to most MLMs
- Stylists get digital marketing materials in their starter kit
- They also make it possible for stylists to run their business online
- The fact that people building a team will have to pass up their team if they don’t make 500 PQV in personal sales. This means people do not have the option of not making sales
- The company offers support in the form of weekly calls. This is both good and bad in my opinion
What I didn’t like
- Other than some basic digital marketing training, stylists are not given in-depth training on how to get leads
- I couldn’t find any income disclosure statement on their website
- I read that there is a $1 monthly charge for owning the company’s special debit card. $1 is not much at all but I feel it’s something that should be mentioned
- The phone calls are a nice gesture but I wouldn’t want to receive those calls. Maybe it’s just me but I don’t even talk on the phone often with people I’m close to
- I think the $59 yearly renewal charge is completely unnecessary. Cheaper than most MLMs but still unnecessary
How I would promote Stella and Dot
As a Stylist
Only consider becoming a stylist if you truly believe in the value of Stella and Dot products.
If you do not truly believe in their products and are only considering this because of the money, now is a good time to look away and learn how to build a business promoting something else you believe in.
I would get the $499 starter kit because it’s the middle option. This would be my personal choice and you should choose whichever is convenient for you. I like this kit because it contains a decent amount of products and it’s not too expensive either.
I have read comments online from people saying the company encourages stylists to host trunk shows and in order to do this, stylists must purchase samples. Well, how about you keep the products from your starter kit and use them as samples at your trunk shows?
The $499 starter kit should come with more than enough products to put up a decent trunk show and if anyone present at the trunk show wants a product on display, I would just place the order for them. That way, I have my products intact for more trunk shows and I’m saving money I would have spent on purchasing product samples.
Whenever the company has some new products you would like to add to your collection, simply use the store credit which also comes with your starter kit to update your products.
To be honest, I might host a few trunk shows but my main focus would be on the digital side of things.
The company gives some digital marketing materials and I would use them to set up some social media campaigns to drive traffic to my Stella and Dot website. The good thing about this is you will not only make commissions off each sale but anyone that signs up to become a stylist will be added to your downline. All this without you having to leave your house or say an actual word.
If you’re comfortable hosting trunk shows or you want to have the option of building a team, you have to become a stylist.
As an Affiliate
Would you fancy being able to do most of the previous paragraph without having to spend a dime on a starter kit? Well, that’s what being an affiliate offers you.
The difference here is you will need to get your own internet marketing training, your own website that is independent of Stella and Dot, you will get compensated if you convince someone to become a stylist but there is no downline in this case.
Because you are not a stylist, you obviously do not have the option of hosting trunk shows or building a team. However, what you get is compensation for promoting their products or business opportunity.
Basically, if you already have internet marketing training, a website and you’re not too keen on hosting trunk shows or building a team, you are better off becoming an affiliate.
If you are interested in becoming an affiliate but you do not have the mentioned pre-requisites, you can learn about all of those here.
Here’s an article I wrote on this site describing how to start an online jewelry business.
Is Stella and Dot a Pyramid Scheme?
Absolutely not! The strength of this company is deeply rooted in the quality of their products rather than recruiting. I strongly feel that if the company stopped accepting new stylists today, the company will still keep going strong.
I mentioned earlier that this company operates like a real company and they could even choose to do away with the business opportunity altogether. This means the opportunity is not a huge part of the company and this is enough to show me that Stella and Dot is not a pyramid scheme.
If you are into jewelry and fashion accessories and you feel comfortable promoting Stella and Dot products in person, I think you will enjoy being a stylist with the company. If you are committed, everything is in place to help you succeed.
If you would feel more comfortable promoting something else, related or unrelated to fashion, you can build your own income-yielding online business and promote absolutely anything.
Stella and Dot Review
Product Name: Stella and Dot
Price: $199-$699 for a starter kit
Founder: Jessica Herrin
Overall Ranking: 80/100