Andreas von Blottnitz, president and CEO of Expertcity.com, an online destination where Internet users can obtain real-time person-to-person computer help, offers these tips on starting your own dotcom venture:

Tip #1: Don't let the dotcom environment drive you to irrational behavior because it's cool and everyone else is doing it. Just like any other business, you need to be customer-oriented, set your priorities and have a plan that shows higher revenues than cost.

Tip #2: Stay nimble and flexible. Don't invest in stuff that you can rent or license, even if that option is a little more expensive. You probably have a great business plan, but you still have to prove it. If things don't go too well, you have to be able to change direction quickly without being attached to big investments.

Aliza Sherman is an entrepreneur and author of Cybergrrl: A Woman's Guide to the World Wide Web (Ballantine Books). She is currently working on her next book and new company.