I recently dove into the world of online business. There were several reasons for this choice but the most prominent was trying to imagine what else I could do that would yield the results in the time frame that this would if I stick with it. I admit that when I started, I held some of the same beliefs and assumptions about an online business that many people have. Through my mentors, research and my own experiences, I have learned that running a business online is pretty much exactly the same as starting a business offline, the internet just means a different way of going about it.Here are 8 of the most widely held myths about starting an online business:Myth #1 – It is easy and effortlessTruth – It is not easy or effortlessThe truth is that starting an online business is very difficult. Demanding, Exhausting. Frustrating. Slow. Overwhelming. Not everyone can do it. That is why there are so many people who quit. It seems easy because people assume you just sit on your computer leisurely at home playing around. In reality, when you get started, it feels like you are learning a new language. There is just SO much information to absorb and it feels like it needs to be learned all at once because everything connects to something else on the internet. You will feel all of the above emotions all at once – frustration, overwhelm, exhaustion and you will question whether this is the right choice for you. Yes there will be days when you find yourself in the zone and feeling especially productive, but those days usually come later after all the hard stuff has been worked out first. And even then, there will still be days of utter frustration when you spend the entire day trying to re-size a photo and then realize with horror that nothing else was accomplished that day.Myth #2 – You will immediately have ton of ‘time freedom’ to spend time with your childrenTruth – No you will notRunning an online business is no different that starting an offline business. It takes time and a lot of work. To make a business succeed, you will need to take it seriously and treat it like a business, and in the beginning all businesses are very very time consuming. The time freedom will not come until much later. Most likely sooner than a traditional business, but still not right away. If you have children and housework and possibly a ‘real job’, you will constantly feel the pressure that one of these things is slipping or that you are constantly two steps behind with everything. You will second guess yourself and think maybe you are just not cut out to do this. You will feel guilt all the time for neglecting your children/spouse/chores/friends in order to pursue this all consuming business.Myth #3 – You will not have to spend any money to start or run the businessTruth – Yes you will.Try to think of an offline traditional business that needs no money to start. Offline, you need supplies, equipment, software, possibly staff or a building space. All these cost money. Most businesses will be in the red for at least the first year. That means that they have put more money into the business than they have made back. Online business is no different. There are just different things to put money into. Usually substantially less money is required, but still don’t count on being able to start a business with absolutely nothing.Myth #4 – You will get wealthy right awayTruth – No you will notThe truth is that setting up a web presence takes time. Getting your blog established and noticed takes time. Generating traffic takes time. All those websites and blogs that have hundreds of subscribers and are generating massive income didn’t start out that way. It took months, maybe years or diligent efforts to achieve that status.Myth #5 – Once my website is finished, the hard work is over and i can relax and let the people begin to chase me down.Truth – No, you can’t and no they won’tUnfortunately, this is not the case. The website is only one of the first steps. First, your website needs to be able to be found by people typing in your product or service into the search engines. It is not automatic. This takes knowledge to make happen. Next, people want to see that you are more than just a fancy website. They want to see that you have maybe some articles, videos, social media, a blog or other content online that backs up your expertise and shows you are a real person. You will need to research paid and free methods to get your site to the first page of the search engines. You will need to research keywords and use them effectively in articles, videos, blog posts. This takes time and patience. And work. If your product or service is unique and something much needed, and you are able to get it onto the first page of the search engines, then maybe you might have a chance of getting your desired effect by virtue of having something that everyone wants but no one could previously find. Other than that, there are thousands of competing businesses out there that you need to work hard to compete for business with.Myth # 6 – I won’t have to deal with or talk to people. Everything can be done through email.Truth – Actually you will need to talk to people.After the initial contact is made you will need to develop real relationships in a more personal way than emailing. You will use email in the beginning for networking, attracting prospects or administrative things but after that, the phone shows that you are a real person and allows you to show your personality to your customers. And often a call is a much quicker method for answering questions than lengthy emails. The internet is simply a connector but after that, it takes work to maintain a relationship.Myth # 7 – I can run the entire business on auto-pilot and be making money while sleeping or on the beachTruth – True, but not right awayYou need to sow the seeds of hard work first before you can reap the benefits of a prosperous business on autopilot. Yes, you can outsource many of the tasks but you will need to still know how to do everything because you will need to be there to answer any questions your outsourcers have. Also, you need to consider that outsourcing certain things may not allow you the freedom the make changes when you want or inject your personality. People whose businesses run smoothly with minimal effort from them had to put a lot of work in to get to that point.Myth # 8 – In a matter of months I can work anywhere I want at any time I want and will be free to quit my job.Truth – No, do not quit your job yetYou will need to be sure you are established in your business first before quitting your job. That will take more than a few months. There is no magic income level or time frame that you will reach before you know it is time to quit. That is something that is completely based on what you feel comfortable with. But you need to be smart about it and make sure you business is making an income consistently, not just once.As you can see, there are many myths associated with starting an online business. It can be scary starting something unknown but with the right knowledge and help the rewards are amazing.
For students who are unsure regarding their future plans, career advice is a great option. This is because experienced career advisors can sort out the options available to you and point you in the right direction. Fortunately, it is very convenient to approach career counselors. While you may find one in your local area, a great option is to look for them online. This is highly convenient, since you can arrange video conferences with your counselor and, thus, get the benefits of a face-to-face conversation without leaving your house. Also, for general career advice, you can refer to career videos. These are the videos that are created by experienced counselors and are aimed at providing general information and guidance.There are several reasons you should refer to these videos if you are confused regarding the career you should opt for. The main reason, however, is the fact that these videos provide detailed information regarding a certain field. They explain all aspects, including the academic requirements needed for a certain career and the kind of study involved. In fact, they even explain the professional life you will have once you complete a certain course of study. This is a major advantage, since getting to know about the professional life in a certain field can greatly help you in choosing a career for yourself.There are several people who rely on online career advice. Most of these people, however, believe that researching and reading up on material written by experts is the only way to obtain general advice. This is where career videos can help you without actually making you feel like you are working alone. Even though these are not conversations, watching someone speak and explain has an undeniable psychological effect, causing you to remember more and, thus, benefit more. By watching career videos, therefore, you can make use of the benefits of watching someone explain things. Not only will it become easier for you to understand things but you will also find yourself more interested in watching videos than you might be in reading a long piece of writing.Another major reason you should watch career videos is the fact that there is a wide variety of these. You can not only watch videos made by career counselors, but also those made by successful professionals in certain fields. Also, you can watch videos of former students who went through the phase you are in right now. Watching these can help you decide how to make the best decision for yourself by choosing the perfect career path.