Terminology and Jargon You Can’t Live Without

Terminology and Jargon You Can’t Live Without

If you expect to start a successful network marketing company or build a very large network, you had better get familiarized with the terminology or jargon!


A builder is a distributor who is actively looking for downlines. A builder is not the same as a customer who only consumes the products or recommends them to friends.


You are in their organization. An upline usually earns commission from your group volume. You may have several uplines possibly up to 10-20 levels in depth. Normally, an upline is responsible for your success. An upline may not necessarily be an upline leader/mentor.

Upline Leader/Mentor

This is an upline that you actively seek counseling from on how to build your business. They are here to guide you and are here to mentor you and make sure you succeed in the business.


You are directly under him or her. Normally they are the one who introduced you to the company.


They are in your organization. Depending on the nature of the plan, your commission from their group usually is smaller the deeper they are in the organization. Sometimes, your downline’s downline could be many levels deep in your organization so you might not even know him personally.


These people are not in your organization and neither are you in theirs. Basically there are no monetary relationship between your group and the sideline’s group. However, depending on the culture promoted in the company, they are either perceived as the worst competitors, or valuable worst competitors, or valuable allies. Take note also, that somewhere along the line, they are also in your upline’s group, so helping your sideline means helping your upline and his group.

Front Line

These are downlines that are personally sponsored by you or are directly under you. You must be directly responsible for their success because you are the one who introduced them to this business. Furthermore, the development of your frontline will determine the success and failure of an entire downline group.


A leg is a downline group in your network starting from the person you personally sponsored. He and all the downlines under him are considered one of your legs. A distributor usually develops many legs simultaneously.


The number of people you can personally sponsor. Matrixes and Binaries usually limit the maximum width. Normally a strong downline is one that builds and develops a very large width.


Depth refers to the level of your downline’s downline. A person who has build depth usually has a secure organization.


An override means you are paid a certain percentage over your downline’s group. Normally an override is calculated on your frontline only.

Profit Sharing Pool

Profit sharing is a bonus that is paid out to achievers who have reached certain conditions in the marketing plan. A pool is a collection of sales volume from distributors all over the company regardless of whether the sales volume comes from your sideline.


A mandatory (sometimes optional depending on certain criteria) sales volume a distributor must achieve. Often maintenance is done to override your downline, become eligible for profit sharing, or maintain a certain rank or even the distributorship. Normally this is enforced because the company needs to make money as well.

Total Payout

This means that a percentage of a product sold by the company that is set aside for distributors and retail sales only. The company only keeps the remainder.

Next post:  Clearing Out Common Misconceptions

Hang in there with us as this will get very detailed as we go along.  So, we’ll see ya in the next post…

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