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Thursday, May 18, 2006

Section 1 -CLEARING YOUR MISCONCEPTIONS REGARDING OPENING AN ONLINE BUSINESS

This article aims at clearing a few common misconceptions which many people have regarding working from home by opening an online business.
Clearing your misconceptions regarding opening an online business

"Argue for your limitations and, sure enough, they're yours."Richard Bach
Stop your-self from giving excuses for opening an online business. Before you start an online business from home, it is important to clear a few misconceptions which have been stopping you to venture in an online world:

Misconception#1: working at home means spending time with the kids and watching the telly:

Working from home does not mean that you can spend all your time playing with the kids and watching the telly. You need to work and put in a lot of hard work to be able to earn some money. When you are working from home, the only difference is that you are not at the office. But you need to understand that you need to put in the same or probably more efforts as you would put when you work in an office. Initially you can work from home on part-time basis and later make it full time. Since you are your own boss, you can mould your work around the type of lifestyle you want. The beauty of setting up an online business is that the more efforts you put in your business, the more you tend to earn. There is a popular saying:"The only place that success comes before work is in the dictionary." You must always remember that if you’re not willing to give a business at least a year, don’t even bother getting involved in a business opportunity. Understand: it takes time to draw a business plan. It takes time to figure out what marketing and advertising activities are most useful for you. If you’re not thinking long term, you’ve set yourself up for failure. It's true that success does not happen overnight but GRADUALLY through persistence and education. Most people start online business with the dream of turing rich the next day. When they fail to do so they quit and spread bad words saying that the online business does not help you earn any money.

Misconception#2: working from home is very simple:

Working at home requires a lot of motivation on your part. At home there are a lot of things waiting to distract you. You might want to watch your favorite sitcom on TV or you might want to help your kids with the smallest things. If you are a perfectionist, consider a common scenario: you might get distracted by a newspaper lying on the carpet. As you get up to remove it you see the laundry bag which is full and waiting. As you deal with it, your kids start calling you. If you keep getting distracted like this it can become very difficult to work with sufficient amount of concentration.

Misconception#3: It is easy to work as your own boss:

Many people think that it is relatively easy to work when you don’t have a boss standing and shouting on your head. On the contrary many people get lazy when they don’t have deadlines within which they have to complete a particular task. It is human psychology that we tend to work better under stress and fear. At home if you to get lax your work will suffer.
You need to make your kids and other people understand that if you are working at home does not mean that you are available to them any time.

Tips to effectively work from home:

  • Set up a separate office for yourself. Convert your store room into an office. Set up a table and chair for yourself. Make your office environment lively. Arrange a few pots. Put fresh flowers in the flower vase everyday.
  • Make sure that you family and friends know that you are not to be disturbed especially for social talks when you are working. Avoid taking friendly calls during your working hours at home. If possible get a different phone line for your business purposes.
    Train your kids to disturb you only if there is an emergency. They should not keep disturbing you for every small thing.
  • Make your daily time–table. Follow it strictly. Set up a time limit for each task. Set up your own deadlines. Make sure you have completed all the set targets before you go to sleep everyday.
  • Develop a reward and punish system for yourself to help maintain self control and self discipline.

    Misconception#4: work at home sites are all scam:

True, that there are a lot of scams going on the internet but if you do a little research and choose an option wisely especially something like opening an online business, it will definitely work for you. Making money on the internet is no longer a myth, it is hard core fact. It is true that there are a lot of scams going on over internet. However one must realize that there is nothing like a ‘get rich overnight’ scheme.’ Making millions of dollars on internet, without much effort from your part’ is NOT TRUE. One must not get involved in these ‘quick get rich’ types of online scams. If you get involved in an online business, you must be prepared to give in your time and efforts. However not a lot of your time or efforts are required, what is more important is consistency from your side. Any business takes some time to mature; same is true for an online business. Don’t venture out expecting overnight miracles. Nothing of this sort is going to happen. Most people think that they can make a fortune in a day by starting an online business. You might be able to make a fortune in a day once your business is well established and starts flourishing.
"No great thing is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen".
Give time to your online business to grow and flourish. Only then you will get the fruits.

Misconception#5: I can start an online business only if I am US resident:

If you are in an online business, it absolutely does not matter; you could be in any country of the world. You could be in Asia or Africa or on a small island, it absolutely does not matter. The only things that matter are that you should have an access to a computer and internet. The beauty of internet is such that you can communicate with any one in any part of the world. It does not matter which time zone you are in or what is your ethnicity and culture. Your website is working for you 24/7, 365 days a year, even when you are sleeping.
However there are a few things which you must consider.
One of the most important things you need to consider is language. Your website should be in English preferably, no matter to what part of the world you belong to. Even if your website is in a regional language, make sure you provide a provision on your website so that people can translate it into English. Most of the internet users belong to USA, followed by UK, Australia and Europe. However use of internet is generally increasing all over the world, be it Africa or Asia. However you don’t need excellent English speaking or writing skills.
International shipping facilities: Make sure you have facilities for shipping your product to various countries. This is not a problem if your product is in form of an e-book or software product, which can be downloaded at zero shipping cost.
Currency can be another problem. But you can easily sort that out by accepting all kinds of credit card payments.

Misconception#6: Lots of fraud takes place on internet just to rip your money off: Most people don’t venture out into a home business simply because they are scared as feel they will land in some kind of fraud and they will be made to spend a lot of money. We have often heard,’ there are a lot of scams going on, on the internet. These scams will cause you to lose every dime and you will end up broke, disheartened and cheated upon'. True there are a lot of scams happening over the net, but among them there are a few genuine programs too, like SFI which help people make a decent living right from their home, all by themselves. Before you join SFI, I can assure you that it is a completely honest and genuine program. You can check hundreds of testimonials regarding the genuineness of this program. You can check the SFI discussion board and talk to real people who are making full time income through SFI. If you have any doubts regarding SFI, you can either ask me in the comments section or ask on the SFI discussion board.
Instead of joining SFI if you build your own business, again you can be sure that it is scam free because you are the one who is creating it.
Misconception#7: I will have to spend a lot of money in order to open an online business and work from home: You need not spend a dime in order to join SFI. In fact if you are a bit entrepreneurial, you can easily progress to higher levels without spending any money from your pocket. The main thing on which you might have to spend a little money is advertising your business. Don’t worry you need not have to spend a lot of money on advertising ( about 50$ per month or even less depending on the amount of time you devote towards SFI). I will be telling you about many free resources which will help you advertise your business at no cost. Also there will be a wealth of useful information available to you when you join SFI.

If you are planning to create your own business, you might be wondering about the cost of the goods that you would be selling on your online store. Well, in the next few articles I shall be telling you about how to make and sell your own product for virtually no cost. I shall be also telling you how to build and maintain an online store at minimal cost.