Yes, it's important to start with conflict of some sort to engage the reader. But it's also necessary to ground the reader in the character and get her engaged in the narrative--caring about the stakes and the outcome--to make her want to read on. If we don't know who the protagonist is, or why they are doing what they're doing, or why it's important, we'd rather be having a snack than reading the story.
Readers is fickle. And if you confuse us, we wander off and go find chocolate.