Many people dream of leaving their nine-to-five jobs and going into business for themselves, but very few actually understand how to start or sustain a profitable E-Biz. In a traditional job, you can always approach a supervisor or co-worker with questions about how to execute a project better, perform a task more efficiently, or handle a particular situation. However, once you venture into business on your own, you’re literally on your own – and that’s a very frightening place for most people. That’s why, when starting your own business, it’s imperative that you get guidance from the get-go. Don’t Go It Alone If you don’t have a support system in place, or any clear sense of direction, it’s easy to grow frustrated or scared, and retreat to your comfort zone without achieving the independence you dream of. A reputable business coach can teach you the best start-up practices and help you implement winning business strategies. Another option is to join an online forum, where you can present your questions to other E-Biz owners who bring to the table the seasoned advice of those who’ve already achieved eCommerce success. According to Andy Jenkins, creator of online business forum StomperNet.com, “Most new E-Biz owners face exactly the same issues and challenges – and they’re a whole lot easier to handle when you have someone helping you, who’s already faced them successfully.” Understand the Pitfalls Having mentored thousands of new entrepreneurs, Jenkins sees the two most common problems they confront on a regular basis as 1) determining correct priorities and 2) overcoming what he calls “paralysis by analysis.” 1. To run your business effectively, you have to organize your priorities. The difference between a successful E-Biz and a failed E-Biz is often determined by where you spend the bulk of your efforts and energy. As a new entrepreneur, you have limited time and funds. Spending too much of either on peripheral matters means you’re neglecting your core concerns. It’s easy to waste tremendous amounts of time trying to learn the ins and outs that are necessary to manage your business, but that don’t really generate a profit in the long run. In an online business you should have a three-fold focus: • finding the right products • driving targeted traffic • converting that traffic into sales That’s it. All other issues are secondary – you have to deal with them in your day-to-day operations, but don’t lose sight of the big picture. 2. Another common problem with eCommerce newcomers is that they tend to over-analyze every scenario and develop “paralysis by analysis.” When you don’t have all the answers, or aren’t certain of your next move, it’s easy to just sit back and procrastinate. But making excuses or putting things off will cripple your ability to do even the most fundamental things to grow your business. It’s important to deal with the business aspect of things in a timely manner. You need to treat your Internet business like a real business – time is money, and you can’t waste it being indecisive. Launching your own E-Biz may seem like an intimidating prospect; but you largely improve your chances of a positive outcome when you find experienced, knowledgeable mentors to help you get started right. States Jenkins, “Starting a venture is always a risk. But you can greatly facilitate your own success by seeking out qualified support to help you find your focus and keep your business moving forward in the right direction.”

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