LITTLE ROCK - The Arkansas Better Business Bureau has become aware of a seminar to be held in Little Rock this week offering consumers information on running an online business. The company is called Storesonline.com and also has operated in other states under the names Ecomtrainers, Internet Marketing Conference, and Galaxy Mall. The initial seminar offered by Storesonline.com is free; however, there is a cost for obtaining the software required to run the business and subsequent seminars to "assure success" require an up-front fee.. This company has been the subject of government action against it in at least six states as well as Australia and has been fined and ordered to cease deceptive sales practices. The Better Business Bureau system has received over 400 complaints against this company. Complaints against Storesonline.com include allegations of misleading claims made to seminar participants concerning software sold, earnings potential, and the company's refund policy.
With the growth of the Internet has come the birth of the Internet-based store. As a result, many entrepreneurs have ditched the idea of the traditional storefront for that of an electronic one. Some of these enterprising individuals have met with great success; unfortunately, many others have not. With the boom in online business, there is a corresponding boom in companies that claim they can teach the everyday consumer how to conduct a successful online business. Consumers who plan to attend any "how-to" seminar should be aware that in most cases the presenters will promote products and services that are for sale. The BBB offers the following advice:
Before purchasing anything at a "how-to" seminar, check out the company with the BBB (go to www.bbb.org )
Obtain all promises in writing - read all contracts and materials prior to purchase.
Be sure to read and understand any cancellation policies or guarantees before making any purchases.
Individuals interested in home-based businesses need to consider all aspects and costs of starting and operating a business. This may include licensing, advertising, bookkeeping and other related expenses.
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