Direct-sales businesses boom as economy tightens

It's Saturday night and a dozen women are in Carmen Rojas' living room, passing around edible lotions, flavored body powders and adult toys. For Rojas of Miami, this night is about more than getting these women to buy her products.

By the party's end, Rojas' guests have spent more than $300, and she will pocket 40 percent of the sales. More importantly, she has ensured future income by inspiring at least one to host a party.

Direct selling has become a money-making option more people are considering to cover rising gas costs, be their own bosses and better balance the responsibilities of career and family. There are tons of direct sales companies to choose from such as kitchenware, fashion, jewelry, tools, cosmetics. The goal with direct selling is to ramp up your earnings by recruiting enough people under your network so that your income benefits from their sales, too.

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