The purpose of this article is to provide an independent Watkins business review. Please know that I am in no way affiliated with the company, although I was a Watkins distributor at one point. Additionally, please know that Watkins is a registered trademark, owned by the company. The information presented in this Watkins business review was collected from articles online, the company’s website, from my personal experiences and independent research.
ABOUT J.R. WATKINS
Watkins is manufacturer of personal care, home-care, remedies, and organic flavorings products. They utilize the direct sales business model to sell their products and services to others. This means that the company manufactures the products and has an independent sales force that sells the products via word-of-mouth advertising. In addition, they are the only direct sales company that I know of that also sells their product line in retail stores (more on that later).
The company has a very long and proud history. In fact, Watkins is one of America’s oldest companies. J.R. Watkins started the company in 1868 from his home in Plainview, Minnesota. From 1868 to 1978, the company was a traditional company with locations in the United States and Canada.
At one point, it had more than 130 branches in the U.S. and Canada. In 1978, the company was purchased by Irwin Jacobs. The Jacobs’ family continued to grow the company and converted it to a multi-level marketing company sometime around 1990. The company is America’s original natural apothecary manufacturer.
The company is one of the largest employers in southeastern Minnesota. J.R. Watkins is privately owned by the Jacobs’ family. It is a member of the Direct Selling Association (DSA). Their mission statement is “to be the most trusted natural products company.” Their competitors include companies such as Amway, Pampered Chef and Melaleuca. The company does business in the United States, Canada, Phillipines and United Kingdom.
THE WATKINS PRODUCTS
What makes the company so great is its products. The products are absolutely awesome! Some of their popular products include their Natural Gourmet™ food products such as their black pepper, cinnamon and vanilla. These are three of my favorite Watkins products.
The personal care products are great too. I really enjoy the salves, bathroom cleaner and laundry detergent. My wife and I use many of the products, even though we are no longer affiliated with the company as distributors.
The products are very reasonably priced and are comparable to supermarket prices. In addition, they are very high quality and come with an unconditional money-back guarantee. Please know that Watkins also sells their products in stores such as Target™ and Wal-mart™. You can purchase products from these stores, even if you aren’t affiliated with Watkins. That’s what we do now!
At the time of this writing, Watkins manufactures more than 350 products. Each year, they add new products to their product line. They have everything from quality food items to bathroom cleaner to laundry detergent. Most of their items are consumable items, which mean they are used and then need to be reordered. This leads to repeat sales for Watkins distributors.
What I want to do in the paragraphs below is review some of my favorite products the company makes.
One of my favorite products is the Natural Home Care Lemon Room Freshener. I love this product. It smells fantastic. More importantly, it eliminates bad odors. I keep a bottle of it in the bathroom and one in our living room.
You can simply spray it a couple times and those bad smells go away. It lasts a long time. It’s concentrated and very effective. You can use it on surfaces or simply spray it into the air. Compared to some of its competitors, I think it’s the best product available.
It comes in a small, 4 fl ounce bottle. You can purchase a bottle of this product for between $3.50 and $4 per bottle, depending upon where you shop.
Another great product is the Natural Home Care Savon Hand Soap. This stuff works like a charm. We have a bottle in the bathroom and one in the kitchen. My favorite is the Aloe and Green Tea flavor. It smells really good and doesn’t dry out your hands. It leaves your hands clean, smelling good and fresh. What more could you ask for in a hand soap?
We purchased the 11 fl oz bottle. That thing lasts a long time. It retails for $7.49 on the website. I will be the first to admit that you can buy cheaper hand soaps at your local drug store. But I do believe that once you try the Watkins Savon Hand Soap (Aloe and Gree Tea) you will keep using it! To me, it’s worth the $7.
I love the J.R. Watkins Natural Home Care Window Cleaner. My favorite one is the Aloe and Green Tea Scent. It’s one of my top ten favorite Watkins’ products.
It does an amazing job cleaning the windows in my vehicle and in my house. It doesn’t leave any streaks or residue on my windows. It removes grime, fingerprints and dust.
The window cleaner is also biodegradable, non-toxic and priced right. It is comparable, or better, than the window cleaners you find at the discount stores and grocery stores. It also contains no animal ingredients.
One 24 fl ounce bottle lasts a long time, depending upon how much you use it. Best of all, one bottle costs approximately $3.50, so it is priced competitively with similar items you would find at the grocery store.
I also love the J.R. Watkins Natural Home Care Furniture Polish. This stuff does an outstanding job cleaning and dusting the wooden surface on our entertainment center and furniture. In fact, it makes our furniture look like new again.
It can even remove watermarks and hide scratches. It gives your furniture a nice shine, so when you have guests over they will be impressed.
It can be used on finished and unfinished wood, natural wood, vinyl, particle wood and more. It is non-toxic and biodegradable. It isn’t tested on animals and contains no animal ingredients.
It retails for $7.99 per bottle, which is a little bit pricey, but I still think it’s a pretty good deal.
Another great product is the Watkins’ black pepper. It is very concentrated compared to most other black pepper spices sold in the grocery store. That means that it has a stronger flavor and you can use less of it and still have a great taste.
It’s made with the finest Malabar and Lampong peppercorns. More importantly, the peppercorns are granulated, not crushed, which means they keep their flavor.
My wife and I use the pepper on eggs, vegetables, meats, salads, pastas, stir fry, in marinades, soups and countless other things. In my opinion, it’s one of the staple items in our kitchen. It comes is a six ounce can, which lasts almost 18 months for the two of us. It retails for just $7.99.
I also enjoy the Watkins High-Oil Korintje Cinnamon. It’s the best tasting cinnamon I’ve ever used. We use it on toast, on pudding, on pancakes, in cakes, on cinnamon rolls and in so many other recipes. It comes in a large 6 oz tin can.
The cinnamon has won countless awards. In 1928 it won the Gold Medal prize for the highest quality cinnamon at the International Exposition. Another great thing about it is that it is ground well. It’s very fine, unlike other cinnamon products you find at the grocery store.
I also recommend the J.R. Watkins Natural Apothecary Hand and Cuticle Salve. It comes in several different essences, to include lemon, mango, aloe and tea, and lavender. Lemon is my personal favorite.
What I really like about the product is that it works. It does a great job protecting your skin from the harsh elements. If you work outside, or tend to have dry hands and cuticles, you should check it out. It is made of beeswax base and is very good at moisturizing, nourishing, and revitalizing your hands.
According to the official Watkins’ website, the salve is:
• 95% Natural and above
• Sodium Lauryl Sulfate Free
• Sodium Laureth Sulfate Free
• Paraben Free
• Phthalate Free
• Mineral Oil, Petrolatum free
• Dye Free
In other words, the salve doesn’t have many harmful ingredients. At the time of this writing, the product retails for $8.99, for a 2.1 ounce can.
My wife and I really love the J.R. Watkins Original Vanilla. It’s easily our favorite vanilla available for purchase. We use it for baking all types of things such as cakes, cupcakes, brownies, whoopie pies and chocolate chip cookies.
It’s made from Madagascar Vanilla beans. Even better, it’s double strength. You can get up to 132 uses per 11 ounce bottle. Also, when you freeze it or bake it, the flavor doesn’t dissipate. At the time of this writing, it has a suggested retail price of $15.99.
If you’ve never tried the J.R. Watkins Original Vanilla, you should. It’s won countless awards. It tastes great. It’s even used in the “Famous Amos” chocolate chip cookies. If it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for me.
I also enjoy the J.R. Watkins Meat Magic Exhausteur de Viande Flavor Enhancer. This product is absolutely awesome for chicken, beef, steak, and seafood. I’ve used it in burgers, meatloaf, baked chicken, stir-fry chicken, steak, deer meat and countless other recipes. All you do is add a teaspoon or two of it to any dish and BINGO!
We’ve had our bottle for about a year now and are only half way through it. One bottle is 11 fl oz. For the best use, you use two teaspoons for every pound of meat. You can vary the amount depending upon your taste-buds and the recipe you are cooking. One bottle of the Watkins Meat Magic retails for $9.99.
This is just a broad sample of some of the company’s great products.
WATKINS PRODUCTS IN STORES
Did you know that Watkins products are sold in stores? I know that they can be found in Target. They are also available at Whole Foods, Bristol Farms, Cub Foods, HyVee, Rothman’s Fresh Markets, Woodmans, Wal-mart, Hannaford, Ralph’s, Pick N Save and about 30 other retail stores. Additionally, you can also buy Watkins products at Amazon.com, ebay.com and drugstore.com.
I have mixed feelings about this myself. From the company’s perspective, it’s definitely a great idea. They get increased exposure to their products and develop new revenue streams and new customers.
As a distributor, on the other hand, it’s hard to compete with retail stores. After all, why would someone buy products from you (the distributor), when they can get the same products in stores, probably at a cheaper price? Personally, I see that as a huge disadvantage for distributors.
In fact, I wouldn’t join any direct sales company that offers its product line in stores. I think it defeats the whole concept of using the direct sales business model to begin with.
But, I know that people think differently about this subject. Some distributors are fine with it, claiming that the added exposure is good for their business.
WATKINS INCOME OPPORTUNITY
The income opportunity is great for someone looking to make an extra few hundred dollars per month or someone looking to build up a full-time income with the company!
There are several ways to make money with Watkins. The first way you make money is by selling products to retail customers. You can do this by doing group presentations, one-on-one sales presentations or by sharing Watkins catalogs with friends and family members. When you do this, you keep the wholesale retail difference.
In most cases, this is somewhere between 20% and 40% of the selling price. Sometimes it’s more and sometimes it’s less. It varies by product and whether or not you give your customers any type of discount. Every product has a “suggested retail price.” The amount you charge customers is up to you.
The next way to make money with J.R. Watkins is to sponsor new distributors. When you sponsor people into the Watkins business, you can earn money off their sales too. When they sell products to customers and sponsor new distributors, you earn a small commission off each sale. As their sales increase and their downline grows, your commissions grow and you make more money. Therefore, it’s in your best interest to help your new Watkins distributors succeed.
The final way to make money with Watkins is with leadership rewards and incentives. When you build a large downline and generate lots of sales volume, Watkins will reward you with cash incentives, gifts, travel opportunities and more.
The amount of money you can earn is unlimited. It’s all based off your sales volume and your group’s sales volume. The more volume your “total business” does the more money you make. You can get started with your own Watkins business for about $39.95.
HOW TO SUCCEED IN WATKINS
Success in Watkins is not rocket science. If I had to boil it down in a nut-shell I would say the secret to success is to use the products yourself, to find five to ten customers, to sponsor a few distributors and then help them do the same thing.
Most of the top earners have personally sponsored 50 to 200 people and they also each have 10 to 100 customers.
I think it also helps to have a game plan and have a mentor. Find someone in your upline who is successful and willing to help you and let them help you come up with a game plan. Create a simple business plan that makes sense to you, that you can stick with, and will lead you to your goals.
I should also tell you that if you want to succeed, it will take time. Most businesses take a year or two for the owner to get profitable and several years to make a good income. Rome wasn’t built in a day. More important, this is not the lottery or some get rich quick scheme. You have to put in the work and be consistent before you can expect any type of results.
FINAL THOUGHTS ABOUT WATKINS
In conclusion, I believe the Watkins business is a viable and legitimate business opportunity for the following reasons. First and foremost, they offer exceptional products at reasonable prices. In addition, all products come with a 100% money back guarantee.
Next, they have an outstanding reputation, a strong financial backing, exceptional leadership, and a long history. Additionally, they offer a fair compensation plan and great distributor support. Simply put, they have everything that’s required in a good direct selling company.
Your key to success is to find a successful sponsor, build a large retail customer base, and consistently sponsor new distributors into your Watkins business. If you can do that, you will make money and build a profitable Watkins business. Please know that Watkins is not a get rich quick business opportunity. It takes time and effort to succeed, just like any other viable business model.
On a side note, I encourage you to share your Watkins experience with others. If you are currently (or formerly) involved in Watkins, please share your story. Just leave a comment below to do so.
Network Marketing Professional (since 2002)
Author, Blogger, & Entrepreneur
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