There are some folks who try to sell the Amway opportunity as one that works in a good or bad economy. The pitch might be that people need household products such as soap or cleaners in a good or bad economy. While that may be true, in a tough economy, people will be looking for the bottom line, or the cheapest price. That is why Walmart is wildy successful. Walmart's slogan is "live better, save money". Being that Walmart sales exceed 500 billion dollars, it means that one day's sales exceed Amway's sales for more than a month. Clearly, price is important to consumers.
Amway apologists like to cite that not everyone buys a Porsche or a Lexus. While that is true, it is ridiculous to think Amway products are a Porsche or Lexus compared to other household products, and that consumers in general, even care less about issues like that. What do IBOs do? Brag that their laundry soap is better than their neighbors?
Another silly tactic that some Amwayers employ is to drop names such as Robert Kiyosaki, or Warren Buffet promote MLM. The fact of the matter is Robert Kiyosaki makes him money from Network Marketers, not from Network Marketing. Or, he's selling the IBOs books and seminars. Warren Buffet and others apparently own MLM companies, thus they also profit FROM network marketers and not from distributing the good themselves. It's a silly argument and anyone with some discernment can see right through it. I even see rumors spread by some IBOs that various movie stars or celebrities are involved in Amway. The truth is that there are some celebrities that are involved with Amway, but typically, they are paid to endorse Amway rather than being rank and file IBOs.
That brings us to whether Amway is a viable business opportunity. Let me put a disclaimer that people who may try to sell goods without participating in the training system might have a chance to make a few dollars, but these folks are quite rare. Many people get drawn into going diamond and chasing a dream. It is why you see big functions and conventions of people chasing dreams that likely won't come to pass. The typical IBO doesn't do much, if anything at all. Out of those who actually put in effort, a fraction of 1% might go platinum and an even smaller fraction of 1% might make some money. Amway's own numbers and the plan shown by many IBOs confirm this. Amway says the average "active" IBO makes just over $200 a month. We also know that it takes about 100 IBOs or more to form a platinum group. We know that many IBOs do little or nothing. That already provides a clear picture that only a small percentage of IBOs can ever reach that platinum level where you might net a small profit, depending on your business expenses.
Factoring in the Amway (crappy) reputation and you have a very tough business opportunity. Now Amway itself may have done good things (politically) but IBOs themselves have ruined the Amway name. They have lied or tricked people into attending recruitment meetings, or they have called people broke or losers. Amway is a very tough business to succeed in, regardless of your level of effort.