Report: #164702

Complaint Review: Melaleuca

  • Submitted: Tue, November 15, 2005
  • Updated: Tue, September 04, 2012
  • Reported By: Tahlequah Oklahoma
  • Melaleuca
    Yellowstone Highway
    Idaho Falls, Idaho

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I joined Melaleuca after meeting someone online who SWORE by the products and said what a GREAt busines opportunity it was.

After a few weeks, she wanted me and another lady to start an online website to sell memberships into the company. After contacting the company, we were informed the only way to sell them online was by following these rules...

1. You MUST use one of Melaleucas contracted web servers for your site. AND PAY FOR IT..
2. You cannot mention products names or the company ANYWHERE on the web site.

This was one difficulty of making any new business.

After several months on the program, I could not order one month because my son needed to have surgery halfway across the country. When heading to the bank to take out the last of my funds for the trip, I was missing almost $70.

I called the company after my bank said that the money was electronically taken out by Melaleuca. They informed me this was what the backup order was for. I then asked about withdrawing from the company, because I simply could not afford that much in orders a month.

They informed me I would need to send them a HANDWRITTEn note with my phone number and member number included in the letter, stating I wish to be removed, and it must be hand signed. They also informed me then that I could get refund for my products if I so wished by sendign those back. I did just that. Boxed up my product, signed a letter, and shipped it off.

After I knew they had received my products, I called them to ask about my refund and my membership cancellation. They informed me they did not receive my letter to withdraw and already another back up order was sent out and billed to my account.

The amount of the refund they gave me was WAY off from what should have been refunded, and they vouched they would fix it. Upon calling them back, several different amounts had been credited to my account (so they said) I also FAXED them another leter asking to withdraw, and they said it would be put in ASAP. FINALLY...I got my refund after 3 weeks. BUT...I still had a back order on its way to me, along with some other products that would not fit into the first box, to return.

At this time I asked if I was not allowed a refund of my membership fee.(it was under 120 days at this point) They stated all I had to do was end back my biz kit, and a refund for that amount would be issued. sent back my biz kit, other items, and the second back order.

Now, I again have been given several different amounts of a refund. On Wednesday, I talked with a supervisor, who informed me a full audit of my account would be done, and she would have the customer service rep I was previously speaking with, call me back ASAP with the correct information. On Thursday, this rep called me back.

He informed me I was entitled to a $197 refund, $53 of which would be Melaleuca credit. Today, I called again to find out where this refund was, and to order my $53 in credit, and was informed that I had NO credit, and my refund was going to be under the $250 worth of product I sent back. Some of which was unopened. And the total refund would be $109 total. This girl made plenty of excuses for the rep I talked with on Thursday, and all in all...I am out ALOT of money I needed for my sons medical procedures.

Watertown, New York

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/15/2005 04:04 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Anonymous - (USA)

 I have had no problems with the Company at all. The products are very top quality at reasonably competitive prices. I was explained very thoroughly about the back orders, which are products you personally choose, that the Company sends to you on the date you agree to if you do not place an.order within the 30 days. I was also told how i could cancel the membership and common sense told me that if I chose to do so I should cancel within a reasonable amount of time so that a back order will not get sent to my home. It was not in any way a scam, it was a courtesy of the Company to.provide the backorder service..And I know if I choose to cancel I could do so at anytime.

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#2 Consumer Comment

Melaleuca vs. MLM

AUTHOR: Patrick - (United States of America)

I agree that MLMs are bad. But i assure you Melaleuca is not an MLM as most people perceive them.

MLM generally funnel money to the top, and leave the people on the bottom paying for things they can't afford. This is why people get hurt by them.

Melaleuca has a unique system. They have a set commission and openly tell enrollees what they are. They openly tell the structure and who gets what. There are no secrets. And if you don't understand how something works or have questions, you can call the company and they will explain it.

Although with Melaleuca it is very involved and there is a lot of info.
I found myself investigating and researching them and their business structure for several months before getting the big picture. Once I did get all the information, I realized this was an opportunity unlike any other.

Basicly I signed up for $29 to be a preferred customer with rights to market / advertise for the company. With that sign up I get a starter kit with DVD, instruction pamphlet to help get business started, Leadership Magazine, presentation book, and pamphlet explaining many of the benefits of being a member. Membership after that is $12 a year. $1 a month? Yeah.

I agree to be a preferred customer and buy about $50-$60 worth of products. At first I did not like this. But after using the products and saving money on them, I saw the upside of it. Also the products are higher quality then store brands and are about the same price or less then store brands. Since they have all the cleaning supplies I need at home, it wasn't hard to find something to buy.

So I got cheap sign up (less then Costco), save money on higher quality products/cleaners, and the opportunity, if I so choose, to build a business (free) from home by just mentioning the company or referring them to someone that does the business.

Seriously? What other opportunity can you find like this?

Until you get ALL the facts, do not call this company just another MLM! I am actually stunned that Amway is still around or any of the other overpriced direct marketing companies.

And I am educated, been an electrical contractor for 5 years, have college education as well as do many of the people in Melaleuca. They, like me, saw the potential for the business side.

success factors of an MLM:

1 Track Record. Most don't last past 5 years. Melaleuca has been at it for 27 years and grows each year.

2 Financially Sound. Melaleuca has NO DEBT. They pay their bills and execs on time.

3 Strong Management. most MLMs are run by MLM gurus. Melaleuca is run by people who ran fortune 500 companies.

4 Unique Consumable Products. products people use every day. No one hit wonders. Melaleuca actually has patents on many things and their scientists have broken new ground and lead the industry on heart health, vitamins supplements, cholesterol, diabetes products.

5 Competively Priced. does it cost more then store products? If you pay 3-5x as much for them, how do they help you? Melaleuca prices are near the same as store products and often less.

6 High Reorder Rate. 95% of the people who bought with Melaleuca last month, will buy the following month. Most MLMs fly by night and arent worried about building a customer base.

Low Personal Production Requirement. You have to work very hard in most MLMs to get a fraction of what they promise all while paying crazy prices for products, cutting into your budget while attempting to build a business. building a business with Melaleuca cost almost nothing and the effort is minimal.

Low Entry Fee. Many companies that you save money at require membership. Costco for example, and how about credit cards. Many charge you more then $29 to start and all charge more then $12 a year. Many times I have signed people up for $1 through special promotions in Melaleuca. Other companies require you to buy huge starter packages for hundreds if not thousands of dollars.

Low Attrition. many MLMs do not care if you stay with them. They get your money up front with large sign ups and starter kits. Melaleuca rarely loses customers, which means you get a continuing income, likely for life. Their customers stick with it month after month.

Timing. First in wins for most. Not with Melaleuca. They are just getting started, even though they been at it for 27 years.

NO Breakaways. Many MLMs penalize you for working hard to keep your downline balanced. They will even steal your downline if they are better at selling then you. Melaleuca is a team effort, nobody can steal your team/ customers. If you find a motivated person, they are your asset for life.

NO RISK. can you send it back if you don't like it? Melaleuca all products are 100% guaranteed for at least 60 days, some longer. I have heard many horror stories about product dumping. They get you to buy a bunch of crap you can't sell or use. Then they tell you it doesn't matter as long as you have a good sales pitch or a good salesman.

Anyone who has ever been through an MLM or scam knows these 12 things don't exist for all those other MLMs or scams.

Think about it, who else gives you 10% back on products you are already saving money on, then gives you commission on the sales generated from people you refer to the company. Then give you additional savings at 650 name brand stores, medical insurance, home security, lifelock, and many others. All while reducing your carbon footprint and promoting good health for your family and pets.

I myself waited for several months to test the products before even thinking about telling my family, friends, and neighbors about it. I would never subject them to anything that was a scam or MLM type business. Most have already experienced Amway and won't have anything to do with it.

Once I did a full research of the company and tested each product thoroughly, I then mentioned it to many of my family members and friends. I got the evil eye. Once I showed them the DVD and full presentation, they all said that sounds pretty good and they wanted to try the products first. So I let them try them. Several have signed up just because the products were so impressive.

Melaleuca also offers a direct customer status. You sign up for $12 and buy what you want, when you want, no obligation to buy each month. You, however, do not get the additional savings and benefits that come with the preferred status.

So please stop comparing this company to MLMs or pyramid schemes, if you have ever been in this company for a year and understand it in full, then and only then can you compare it to anything. Most people, who quit the company and bad mouth it, never gave it a chance and refused to educate themselves further after the presentation. I was one of those people. My wife made me endure it, and now I am the one marketing it. I got on their website and researched everything. I was amazed. As a businessman, I could find nothing but good in this company. The only string is the agreement to buy monthly. Once I saw the quality of the products and calculated the savings, I quickly got over it.

Sorry if I jumped around to much, my mind runs faster then I can type. I hope this helps clear up some of the misconceptions of Melaleuca. It really is a great company and cares about its customers / associates. Every so often a young, motivated marketer goes off half cocked. Proper training is important to keep these incidents from happening. Most of it could be averted if the enrollee was properly informed. If you did not watch the DVD in full, you did not get a proper presentation.

I would recommend not joining anything through the internet, EVER. Not even Melaleuca. These people are often greedy and do not care about properly presenting the products/company. They only care about how many leads they can generate. Melaleuca prefers the experience to be more personal. Sorry about your experience. I have had several bad experiences by replying to business/money making opportunities on the internet. I have had none with Melaleuca.

The person who enrolls you is supposed to help you cancel if you so choose, also. I am gonna assume the person did not stay in contact with you to make sure all was going well, either? They should have given you contact info and made it clear to contact them with any concerns or questions. Somebody somewhere dropped the ball on this one, either the person who enrolled you or their immediate support. Unfortunately as the business grows, it is harder to keep this in check. Melaleuca is a great company. They have many great people. Just every once in a while some bonehead slips in and makes mistakes. Usually the company makes everything right in the end, especially in these circumstances, if explained in detail on the phone and in your cancellation letter.

God Speed and Be Well.
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#3 Consumer Comment

The majority of MLMers wake up and get out within a year

AUTHOR: Steve - (USA)

For this company, it is 60% turnover each year. They lose varying amounts depending on how long they stay in, what with the "auto buy" thing you experienced. And since these people are not counted when calculating the averages for financial disclosures, the real earnings by MLMers are even worse than what is reported. In fact, since these companies do not take into account the expenses (like these purchases) either, people do not realize that the VAST majority of people lose money.

Be grateful you got out when you did. Those that do stick with their MLM can end up destroying a lot of relationships as they start seeing their friends and family as money-making opportunities. 

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#4 Consumer Comment

Melaleuca Facts

AUTHOR: tony4wellness - (USA)

Fraud, Scam or whatever people say really doesnt matter. Or maybe, people dont read the out clause or terms and conditions before signing their name on the dotted line. It does not matter. Here are the Facts about Melaleuca, they sold over a BILLION DOLLARS last year worth of products, so people must like their products, right? Nowadays, no matter what business you go into, its products, products, products.
Pyramid systems have been outlawed in the US a long time ago and they dont even sell any products at all. Melaleuca has over 350 products. Dont let people mislead you; this is NOT MLM or no break aways. Melaleuca works because they dont advertise and dont have any distributors (buy products to sell). All we do is word of mouth advertising, you like the product you share it! In turn, we are paid just for referring people to Melaleuca and helping them register and thats it! The savings in advertising is their revenue sharing program, simple. We have no inventory control, no billing, no carrying of products. We are paid on immediate commissions with several tiers of bonuses and handsome residual income, how GREAT is that!
This is not a lottery, people work at it. If you can find a system that will make you money without working for it, let me know, Im interested. They have paid out over 2.8 Billion in commissions to regular people out there in the past 27 yrs. What is really great about Melaleuca is they genuinely want to HELP. This is Very Rare for a corporate identity. Helping people better their health; getting them out of debt; having a good personal life and preserving our environment for our children, is that a BAD goal to have?
This is more than a business for most of us. You really have to experience Melaleuca, and when you do, you too would fall in love with them, just like the more than 850 thousand families that have joined them. Sorry, but its hard to find sad storys telling lies here. What you will find are peoples experiences in how lives have changed because of Melaleuca. If you have time, take a peek at this  
A Successful Melaleuca breeds successful people and its not too late to team up with us. If you want to succeed and willing to work and if you think you are coachable, We Will Help because Melaleuca wants us to. We are just starting, when a laid off woman made about $ 84,000 in less than a year, you know it works.
Facts are facts but if you have more questions, give me a call anytime; Tony 408-771-0296. If NOT, then, Good Luck on your travels and I hope you find contentment!
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#5 Consumer Comment

Read the fine print

AUTHOR: P - (U.S.A.)

I'm sorry also for the problems the lady had with Melaleuca. I don't sell it, but have ordered from them for two years and have always had good service. I had a rep who explained everything including the backup order that you choose when you start buying. You also should have been told that the backup order would be sent if you didn't order by a certain date of the month. With all the products they offer, it's hard to believe there is nothing to order. All you are doing is buying from them instead of your local health food store and Melaleuca is less expensive too. The natural products have helped my psoriasis a great deal.

I'm not trying to convince people to buy Melaleuca. What I am saying is to know what you are getting and signing when you start or buy anything from any company. I got ripped off buying a computer and not checking the final paperwork for the extended warranty. Guess what? It broke and no warranty. I should have double checked EVERYTHING on the receipt, etc.
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#6 Consumer Comment

My experience with Melaleuca

AUTHOR: Meg - (U.S.A.)

Jennifer, I am sorry for the experience that you have had with Melaleuca. Let me just say, my experience with this company has been wonderful! I have two websites, which I do not pay anything for, that are used for people if they want to contact me for more information. These are provided through the support team that I used to become a preferred customer of Melaleuca. No, I can not advertise the Melaleuca name, but that is for legal reasons, not because Melaleuca does not want you to use their name. The ancellation process has to be done through the mail, as is stated in the agreement that you signed, or went online to digitally accept. This again is for legal reasons. I have returned some products, and always received a refund or exchange very quickly. I hope people reading this will realize that no company is perfect, and this is not the experience that most people I know have had.
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