Don’t be intimidated by bigger competitors. Trust me, it’s a huge advantage being small, agile and flexible. Big companies dream about having the flexibility and options that small companies have.
Take software for example. People just love it when there are no nagging configuration screens and wizards in software. Simple wins every time. You can take advantage of this in your product as well. You have little time and limited resources so make your product as simple and easy to use as possible.
If you present your idea as a small and simple solution to a problem, there are lots of customers who will immediately be excited. This is how you can differentiate from your competitors and provide unique value.
The same is true in ecommerce as well. There are thousands of successful small companies who love what they do and stay small by design. Take the caudabe iPhone cases for example. It’s a small company in Chicago who makes perhaps the best cases out there. They win by staying small and not trying to imitate what the bigger companies do.
Staying small will force you to stick to the epicenter of the problem you want to solve. Your constraints will make you find creative solutions to difficult problems. In the end this is all that matters. Everything else can wait until much later.
You need to be creative about problems you are facing and find easy solutions that will get you forward faster. For example, do you need to create your own blogging system or will a wordpress installation work fine and save you hours of coding work ?