Sponsored by the Traveling Vineyard
By Holly Reisem Hanna
This month I had the opportunity to review the Traveling Vineyard and their Success Kit for new Wine Guides. I’ve always thought the Traveling Vineyard had a fun and unique concept, but also ideal. After all, what’s always served at home shopping parties … you guessed it, wine! And who doesn’t love drinking free wine?!
The company started back in 2001 with the goal of making wine tastings less stuffy. Well, their relaxed vision took off and today the company has over 1,000 Wine Guides in over 40 states.
The Traveling Vineyard has 21 different varieties of wine in 3 different categories: red, white, and sweet and fizzy. Besides wine, they also sell accessories such as chillers, decanters, and openers. Wines are priced from $14 – $25 per bottle and because it’s a consumable item people always need more. Best of all their wines have a guest satisfaction rating of over 98%.
Cost to Join:
In January you can become a Wine Guide for $174 ($99 for the Success Kit and $75 for your first two tasting sets). You can also earn an electric wine opener when you reach $750 in sales within your first 60 days. If you sell $1,400 within your first 60 days, you’ll also get a $50 rebate. Lastly, for every friend that you sign up as a Wine Guide during your first 60 days, you’ll also receive a $100 bonus when you both reach $750 in sales.
The Success Kit comes with everything you need to get started, from wine glasses and decanters, to openers, carrying bags, brochures, order forms, marketing materials, educational cards, and your first two wine kits — so that you can host two tasting parties. I was really impressed with sommology cards which teach you about all the different varietals, pairings, and aspects of wine. These not only make it super easy to learn about the wine industry, but they’re great for your customers to view at tasting parties.
With the Success Kit you also get your own Personal Estate Website free for the first 3 months, afterwards it’s $15.95 a month. While I didn’t have an opportunity to review the Personal Estate Website, it does contain additional training, videos, and your own personal accounting software, so that you can track orders and see how much money you’re making.
For each party that you schedule — you’ll need to bring 5 bottles of wine for tasting. But the cool thing is if you sell $150 and have at least 3 orders at your tasting party, you’ll get a $75 credit which you can apply towards your next tasting set.
Wine Guides can make 15% – 35% in commission based on monthly sales volume. Payments are made 3 times a month via direct deposit. As a Wine Guide you get a 20% discount off of wine and these sales are combined in your monthly personal volume. On average, Wine Guides sell $417 per tasting party. And there are no monthly sales quotas, which a lot of direct sales companies do have.
There are basically 4 ways in which you can earn money with the Traveling Vineyard:
- Home Tasting Events
- Online Sales
- Monthly Wine Club Sales
- Building a Team
Lastly, you can earn incentive trips where you can get an all expense paid trip for meeting certain milestones, like hosting events, sponsoring new team members, and getting promoted.
What the Wine Guides Say About the Business Opportunity:
Missa Capozzo – Wine Guide, April 2014
Traveling Vineyard is more like a family than a company. When I first joined this company, I had no idea what I was gaining beyond a job. I knew it would be a great business opportunity, but I had not a clue the incredible friendships and network of personal support I would gain. We are a small, close knit group of people that mean more to each other than just being co-workers. We support each other within the business and throughout life’s ups and downs beyond the business, and that is something I think is very rare.
I originally joined the Traveling Vineyard, because I wanted to break into the wine industry, but I had no professional experience other than my deep love for wine. I loved the idea of being able to make my own hours and schedule, and especially being able to dictate my own salary. I truly have the power to control the destiny of my career, including my income, my promotions, and status within the company, as well as my schedule. I was able to take a passion and a hobby and turn it into a career.
I have been with the company since April 1, 2014. I had hoped that by the end of 2014 I would have been successful enough with the Traveling Vineyard to be able to quit my full time job as a fitness professional. By the end of October, I was able to do just that and am proud to say the Traveling Vineyard is my full time job.
I am a full time wine guide by choice and I couldn’t be happier!
Melody Archambault – Wine Guide, August 2013
I got a call from a friend that wanted me to host a wine tasting at my house, so she could write her trip off to our area. As a business owner we get to write off anything we do that involves our business, including our initial investment which we earn back in 60 days.
Anyway I said sure, but what is the Traveling Vineyard? She said it is super easy. She would bring me 5 bottles of wine for free and all I had to do was invite my wine loving/family and friends. Amazing how many people I know that wanted to come! I thought, “What an amazing and unusual thing to do!” I am always looking to make extra money, so when I found out it was only $200 to get in the business and there were NO other wine guides in my area and only 1,200 in all of the US I knew this would be a great opportunity.
I joined August 2013 and started hosting my own tastings and had about 4 with my own people and then it just grew from there! Everyone wanted to host and I had several girls that wanted to be part of my team. I never feel like I am working when I go to homes for the tastings. Everyone is already excited to drink wine. I pretty much talk about the company and get paid to drink wine with them! It’s a win-win for me. I decide how many tastings I want to do or if I want to take the week off. If you have been in direct sales you know building a team helps because we all work together.
This really grew quickly for me and I think that is because it is different from the everyday makeup, candles, jewelry, and bags that are out there. I earned a trip to Aruba with all expenses paid with about 50 other Wine Guides just for having fun and helping the other girls on my team.
I do love to help other people meet their goals, I feel like I am giving back. I met the owner and his wife at the convention this past summer and found them to be friendly, fun, and very supportive of all of us. I feel at home with this company! Weather you are looking to make a few extra dollars a month or big money the opportunity is definitely here!
Why I Think This is a Good Opportunity:
1) Americans love their wine!
According to the Wine Institute in 2013 Americans consumed 892 million gallons of wine! So it’s a good niche to be involved with.
2) Easy to make money.
Wine is a consumable product, so it’s easy to get reorders. They have a wide selection of wines, so there’s something that will appeal to every taste. I also like the wine club option — this automates your sales, which makes your job easier and more lucrative.
3) No pressure.
With this opportunity you really can work as little or as much as you’d like, because there are no monthly sales quotas.
4) Low startup costs.
Not only is this an inexpensive business to start, but you can also earn credits for your tasting sets, so you’re not constantly spending money on supplies.
The Traveling Vineyard is a member of the Direct Selling Association — which means they are committed to ethical business practices.
This post was sponsored by the Traveling Vineyard. Please be aware that we can only promote advertising from companies that we feel we can legitimately recommend to our readers. For more information please see our disclosure policy.