Work at Home Business Opportunity in Canada

"Is This a Scam?" -- 11 Telltale Signs

by Glenn Beach

A legitimate home business program may have problems in one or two of these areas, but beware when they start to add up:

  1. Beware of unrealistic hype such as "Earn $5,555 on a $5 Investment in 30 Days!"

  2. Evaluate the products/services and the presentation of the information. Just use your common sense on this one.

  3. Evaluate the compensation structure: what is the average time for achieving each level? what is the retention rate of affiliates at the different income levels? Can I contact any affiliates to see how they are doing?

  4. Evaluate the support system: ask your upline sponsor to give you his personal marketing strategy.

  5. Are you asked to pay to sign up? Very often, this type of company will take your money, then you will never hear from them again.

  6. Are there any solid products? The only "product" is the opportunity to make money. They want your money upfront to "join" the opportunity. Your task is to sell the opportunity and collect the entry fee from those you recruit. You make money on these fees alone, not on the sale of product. Sometimes a simple bogus product is thrown in to appear legitimate.

  7. Legitimate MLM companies do usually require a small start-up cost. However, pyramid schemes pressure you to pay a large amount as their profit is made by quickly signing up new recruits. If they have a bogus product, they require you to purchase large amounts of it with no return policy. Some state laws require a 90% buy-back.

  8. Is there a verifiable legal physical address and a regular phone number? (800 numbers do not qualify as "regular" phone numbers.)

  9. Do they have the endorsement of the Better Business Bureau, and the new BBB Online Reliability Seal* on their website, if they even have a website? If there is a BBB Seal on a page, click on it to make sure it is a live link. An unscrupulous webmaster will simply copy the graphic with no real link.

  10. Can you find the owner's name or a company name that began the program? If a name isn't given, you cannot find anything out about their history. This is why legitimate opportunities are happy to join their local BBB.

  11. Illegal pyramids often get the most signups by claiming to be new, a groundfloor opportunity. After all, this means you can't check their history. Of course, not all pre-launches or groundfloor opportunities are pyramids. Look to see if there is any connection with a long-standing company or the founder's previous experience.

Armed with these tools, and with the confidence to make phone calls, do your online research, and ask the hard questions, you should be able to choose a business opportunity with confidence.

*To become a qualified member of the BBB OnLine Reliability Program Seal a company must:

  • Become a member of the Better Business Bureau where the company is physically headquartered;

  • Provide the BBB with information regarding company ownership and management, as well as the street address and telephone number at which they do business. The BBB may verify this information with a visit to the company's physical premises;

  • Be in business a minimum of one year (an exception can be made if a new business is a spin-off or a division of an existing business which has a positive track record with the BBB);

  • Have a satisfactory complaint-handling record with the BBB;

  • Agree to participate in the BBB's advertising self-regulation program, and correct or withdraw online advertising when challenged by the BBB and found not to be substantiated or not in compliance with their children's advertising guidelines;

  • Respond promptly to all consumer complaints and agree to dispute resolution, at the consumer's request, for unresolved disputes involving consumer products or services.


About the author:
Glenn Beach is a poet, writer and home business entrepreneur in Nova Scotia, Canada. Free newsletter, more articles, and business start-up info at:

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Work at Home Business Opportunity in Canada