5 Misconceptions about Online Business and Making Money Online

When people heard about my web publishing venture, run at the comfort of my home, they always think of me as someone who is doing nothing while making money when I sleep. While I don’t mind people misjudging me, I don’t want to give a wrong impression that running an online business is piece of cake.

Yes, I confirm that I do make money even when I am sleeping. However, what you are doing when you are awake is the key to your success. Setting up a website, promoting some affiliate programs, slapping some AdSense codes and going to bed knowing that you will make some money when you are awake in the morning only happen in your dream.

online business misconception
Image by thethreesisters

This blog post is about 5 of many misconceptions many people have about online business and making money online.

Here they are, debunked:

Misconception #1: Making money online is easy

Yes – you’ve heard it, “Make $50,000 a month while you are sleeping,” “I just go $6,275 today, doing nothing,” “How I get to $100,000 a month knowing nothing about the Internet.”

Such too-good-to-be-true pitches are the typical in affiliate marketing. As long as they have income disclaimers stated in their landing page, they don’t do something illegal. However, just like other misleading marketing pitches, such messages – that making money online is easy – have caused people to quit their job, sell their belongings, and such – and jump into the make money online bandwagon believing that it’s really THAT easy. No, it’s not.

Just ask anyone who are successful in making money online – they shed blood and tears in starting up. They have gone through emotional roller coaster; alas, those are something that’s not focused upon by affiliate marketers. Reality doesn’t sell; income potential does. That’s the way the world works.

Now, reading this article, you are becoming one of only a few people who understand the reality of making money online. Don’t get me wrong – you can truly make considerable amount of money online; but you need perseverance and willingness to do numerous trials-and-errors first before you discover your very first success.

Want to get enlightened more? Read on…

Misconception #2: You don’t need any technical knowledge to start

While some online business opportunities can be turned into realities with a few clicks of your mouse, growing it is a whole different story.

It’s true that there are ready-made systems you can use, available for free and paid. Want to get into blogging? Just sign up with Blogger.com and start blogging, selling products and adding AdSense – or any other marketplace – codes. Want to get into online retailing? Just open an Amazon Astore for free, with products automatically added to your page.

The thing is, you need some knowledge in getting them up and running. Afterwards, you need some knowledge on how to do proper Internet marketing (I say “proper” because many jump into Internet marketing with an intention to spam the web with their marketing offers, believing that it’s ethical to do.)

Indeed, I agree when experts say you don’t need to be a techie to run a particular online business. However, I do need to stress you that your willingness to learn will be the key to your success. If you are willing to learn, there are wealth of great advice online – available to you free of charge – that can get you from zero to hero. Without you knowing it, along the time you will somehow become a techie – better than many tech college grads! Again, never. stop. learning.

Misconception #3: Online business is risk free

Just because you start an online business for $100 – even for free – that doesn’t mean that it’s risk free. The truth is far from it: Online business is typically having a low barrier to entry – people can easily start an online business and replicate what you are doing in no time. Thus, competition is fierce and you can only survive if you are offering something that the others don’t.

In fact, online business world is changing constantly, leaving those in the dust if they didn’t respond to the changes. I have failed hundreds of time, building useless websites – mostly to spot lucrative online business and making money online ventures.

Furthermore – unless you are doing online direct selling in online forums and classified sites – you need money to buy a domain name, a web hosting, a front-end design and so on; you also need to budget for your promotion.

So yes, there are risks involved in making money online – don’t trust anyone telling you the otherwise. Your job is to manage the risks while keeping ahead of your competition.

Misconception #4: Online business is free from recession

I was evangelizing – a lot – about how online business beat the recession. In the last 2 years, I learn that the impact of recession toward online business is real.

Running an online store? Recession cuts your sales and profits; Running a blog making money from advertisers? The recession limits your advertisers’ budget, so your income potential is also limited.

With advertisers counting every penny they spent on advertising, you need to be sure to step up your game in order to beat the misconception.

Misconception #5: Online business lets you compete with the big guys

I am a true believer that the Internet has given the rest of us competitive advantages, allowing us to compete with the big guys.

However, you need to bear in mind that even in the online world, money talks; if you have big budget, you can get more from your marketing and promotional efforts. If you don’t, you need to do guerilla marketing in order to bootstrap your campaign.

It’s certainly not easy – especially if you are depending on the search engines to drive visitors to your online business. Just take Google, for example – many have questioned Google’s favor on big brands. But the search engine is Google’s product; so, if you don’t like it, you need to find other means of driving traffic to your website – not easy, I tell you.


Don’t get me wrong; I’m not trying to discouraging you not to start an online business. The truth is, I want to encourage you to give the Internet a try – it’s a huge place with huge market; when you are targeting to the right market, the rewards are huge.

Again, this blog post is purposed for you to start an online business with the right mindset. Focusing on the money will certainly not getting your online business anywhere. Just like its off line counterparts, online business requires you not to focus on the money, but focus on customers, clients, readers, visitors or followers. Do just that and you’ll start seeing results!

Ivan Widjaya
Online business evangelist and influencer