Starting up in any industry can be a daunting task. You’re new to everything, you don’t know
the ropes yet, and if something goes wrong, you may not have the know-how to fix it.
Running an e-commerce business is no different. There’s a lot to learn, a lot of options and a lot
of information to digest. Still, you’ve got to start somewhere. The best way to do that is to
eliminate any false impressions you might have. To that end, here are four misconceptions
newbies have about e-commerce when it comes to starting online stores.
Misconception 1: It’s expensive to start my own business. While it’s true that you’ll need
capital to get pretty much any business off the ground, the world of e-commerce has options
for every budget. The thrifty entrepreneur can find plenty of sites to help them get started
with great e-commerce themes to choose from and a support system behind them. Figure
out a business plan that works with what you’ve got, find a site that fits your budget, and
build from there.
Misconception 2: I’ll need a staff for my business. Eventually, this might be the case. But
when you’re starting out, don’t put the horse before the cart. A business that’s trying to get
off the ground doesn’t need a whole army of people working on it just yet. Many
e-commerce businesses start as cottage industries, meaning that they are run by only a few
people and usually out of a home. Part of owning your own business is making decisions as
it grows. So yes, you may need to hire staff later on. But if you’re just getting your feet wet,
concentrate on what you need in the present, not the future.
Misconception 3: I don’t have enough space to store everything. This is actually more of a
puzzle to be solved. Starting a business with limited funds means some things will be out of
your reach at first. This is true. Renting space might not be an option until your venture
really gets moving and even then, it might make more sense to find storage in your own
home. Before you launch your site, solve the puzzle of the workspace. Rearrange things,
clear out a junk closet packed with things you don’t need to find space in what you’ve
already got. It’s usually right there when you know how to look for it.
Misconception 4: Online marketing is difficult. Marketing can seem tricky, but it’s more
about persistence than anything else. Make sure you’ve got all your social media pages up
and running and update them consistently. An ongoing social media presence is important
for a new business. If you can find it in your budget to hire someone to help with publicity, that function can be invaluable—but not altogether vital. Advertising and marketing will bring new customers in; it’s your job to keep them coming back.
With business, as with most things, you need to start at the beginning and learn as you go. Ask
other people who have had success with e-commerce shops what they’ve done and see if that
can work for you. Find out what led to failures and avoid those pitfalls. Looking at the whole
thing altogether (starting a business, running a business, keeping it going) will be
overwhelming. Start with one small step, then take another and another. Before you know it,
you’ll be running with the big dogs.
If you ever have a doubtful thought that you think might be another newcomer misconception,
do some research and see if it’s true or not. Having faith in yourself and your business is a great
way to dispel misconceptions newbies have about e-commerce. It’s also the best first step you can take on your way to success.