Dropshipping business in Nigeria has been on a steady rise since 2019, and despite the number of people going into it, the lucrativeness of the business keeps increasing annually.
Dropshipping is very cost-effective, and you basically don’t need any capital to begin this business in Nigeria.
So, even with a 9-5 job, dropshipping is a perfect way to conveniently rake in more income for yourself; think of it as a very lucrative side hustle that doesn’t stress you to handle.
How Dropshipping Works In Nigeria
The business of dropshipping is a cycle between you, your customer, and your supplier.
It basically involves paying for goods ordered from your supplier only when your customer has made a payment.
You put up products for sale on your online store; pictures of the products, descriptions, and their prices for customers to view and make choices and payments.
To get your profit, you will have to add a fee to the price fixed on each product by your supplier, which may also include shipping fees and delivery costs if you want
Afterward, you send the orders to your supplier and pay the wholesale amount given by your supplier, removing the extra amount you added which is your pay.
Your supplier then packages the products and ships them off to your customers directly, in your name.
For example, say you deal with phone accessories and put up an image of a particular brand, with its description and speculations.
Your supplier has fixed a price of N15,000 for that particular brand accessory, so you add your profit and extra fees as you deem fit, summing up to N18,000; this is the amount your customer would pay to you, and you would forward that order and the required N15,000 to your supplier, who would package and ship off the phone accessory to your customer to be delivered under your name.
Dropshipping is quite similar to middleman importation, only that your customer has no idea you are buying from a dropshipping supplier and shipping to them directly from this supplier.
Benefits Of Dropshipping In Nigeria
With drop shipping, you don’t have to worry about product inventory/shipping/delivery hassles.
You don’t have to worry about keeping an inventory of the products you are selling, or spending on space to stock the products; this will be handled by your supplier, who will have the products for sale in stock.
You can also experiment with different products without worrying about spending too much, and you can try out different dropshipping channels and suppliers; dropshipping is a cost-effective way to discover what products work best for you and your business.
Dropshipping provides you with a global clientele; you can get international suppliers and sell to customers all over the world too.
Difference Between Dropshipping And Classic Wholesaling/Retailing
The main difference between dropshipping and the classic sales models of wholesaling and retailing is that there is no need for you to keep inventory or keep your products for sale in stock, hence ruling out the need for warehouses and storage spaces.
While you would need to be on the ground physically to supervise and be part of sales transactions with wholesaling and retailing, you can work your dropshipping business from remote locations like your home and the comfort of your laptop, with no stress or hassle.
That being said, exactly how do you start a dropshipping business in Nigeria?
This article aims at showing you how to find products for dropshipping, how to source for suppliers, and generally everything you will need to start and handle your dropshipping business in Nigeria succeNigeria.
How To Start Dropshipping Business In Nigeria
Just like every other business, despite how easy it might be to handle, starting your Nigerian dropshipping business will need you to follow some steps, which include:
- Find a good product to start your dropshipping business with.
- Do proper research on the dropshipping market of your chosen product.
- Getting a good supplier.
- Marketing your brand/products properly.
Find A Niche
A product niche refers to a group of same/similar products or products that relate to each other in particular ways, for example, home decor furniture, gadgets, and accessories.
Finding good products to sell and dropship is an important first step to take in starting a dropshipping business in Nigeria.
You should carry out a market survey on whatever products you decide on; how much demand there is, as opposed to how much supply.
Pick a product that is high in demand in a particular area, but low in supply; this means you would have fewer competitors and more customer prospects.
Be sure to pick an area you are conversant and comfortable with, interested in, and what you fully understand, to gain an additional advantage over dropshipping competitors in that niche.
Make proper research on the product you have chosen, so you can fully grasp the methods of pricing, how to identify quality products and where to find these quality goods.
To help you research better, you could make use of Google Trends to find out what goods are trending, how trending your dropshipping product of choice is and how well it would do in the market.
Dropshipping Niche/Product Ideas Available For Nigerian Businesses
Some products that are available for dropshipping and sales in Nigeria include:
- Men’s clothing and accessories
- Health and fitness products
- Women’s clothing and accessories
- Children and babies clothing and care products
- Phones and phone accessories
- Cars and motorbikes, accessories, parts, and maintenance products
- Hair extensions, wigs, and accessories
- Home and kitchen decor products and furniture
- Electronic gadgets, among others.
Understanding the product niche you have picked means you will be able to pick up on shady aspects of the quality grade of the products, and would cancel/reduce considerably the risk of your getting cheated by any suppliers.
Find A Good Supplier
This is another important step that you need to take time and care in executing; choosing and working with a dropshipping supplier that is not careful with packaging/shipping, or that provides low-quality products ruins your dropshipping business tremendously.
Conduct proper research on legitimate suppliers that are good in what they do and are quite popular with good reviews; in Nigeria, China provides the most suppliers for dropshipping, so you could be on the lookout for certain Chinese brand suppliers.
Subsequently, you might decide to use local suppliers, but you still need to take care in choosing good dropshipping product suppliers.
Build Your Online Store/Website
For a fixed monthly fee that ranges from low cost to quite pricey, you can build a website on a host of online stores like WooCommerce or Shopify.
You will be required to create a domain name, which you can do using any of the website software like WordPress, 3DCart, or Bluehost.
A benefit of these online stores and websites is you can access and attach plugins to different online stores like AliExpress using the AliDropShip plugin, which does most of the hard work for you in your site building; depending on the inputs you make, extensive niche research would be made for you, and products added automatically to your site.
When adding products for sale to your site from these host stores, the supplier scores, also known as reviews are important to note, because they determine how good the suppliers you want to work with are; I strongly advise to avoid any supplier with points below 90%, as this means a lower reliability rate.
Market Your Products
As a new online store owner in Nigeria, no one would know about your store/brand if you do not advertise and promote your dropshipping business.
You could utilize social media platforms, Google Adwords, or blogs about your products to promote your dropshipping business to Nigerians/Nigerian businesses/external clients.
Choose Your Dropshipping Market Platform
You have a lot of options to choose from in picking a platform/method to promote your dropshipping business; I’d even recommend you utilize every platform you can, to broaden your prospects and widen the range of customers you reach.
However, the way you decide, always go for popular platforms and sites that are most likely to reach a wide range of customers.
Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram now have a provided avenue for promotions and advertisements.
You can use either Instagram ads, or Facebook ads, to promote your dropshipping business and online shop; according to the location and people’s preferences you set the ads to.
It is recommended to always request your customers’ email addresses after the first transactions with them.
This is an easy way to personally send them prospective products, based on previous purchases they must have made.
Exchanging emails with customers is also a surefire way to develop a closer relationship with them, prompting them to tell others about your online store, and ensuring they are always aware of what is available and what they can get.
Google Adwords is employed when your online store site has gained an amount of customer traffic.
Google Ads employs the use of other sites to advertise your dropshipping online store by putting up [pop-up messages and directing the ads to customers who are most likely to actually patronize and purchase items from your online store.
You can also consider blogging about different products from your online store, describing in detail what the products are about, making use of SEO keywords, and linking your online store to the blog posts.
This way, whoever searches for that particular product would be exposed to your online store, and can easily connect to the store.
Market Platforms/Websites Available In Nigeria
There are several websites available for Nigerian dropshipping businesses to promote and advertise their businesses.
Not only do these platforms provide a wide range of suppliers for dropshipping products, but they also act as perfect marketplaces to advertise your products and get customers to place orders on products they want to purchase.
Some of these platforms include:
- Inventory Source
- Konga, among others.
Send In Orders To Your Supplier
Any of the several plugins available for you to connect to your site can connect you to your suppliers directly from your online store.
So, with just one click, you can easily send customer orders to your suppliers quickly and without any stress.
Always remember to include a note to the supplier with your store name and whatever additional note you would like sent to your customer, seeing as the products would be shipped from your supplier directly to your customer.
Making Profit In Dropshipping Business In Nigeria
Dropshippers in Nigeria make a profit by including their amount to the wholesale price fixed by their suppliers.
You can decide to also add shipping fees and a delivery fee to the price you put up besides products on your online store, even as far as including a discount price if products are purchased in bulk because everything would still be shipped off at the same time from your drop shipper.
For instance, if your dropshipping supplier places a t-shirt at N700 and a packet of seven t-shirts at N4,500, you can put up your price for a t-shirt at N900, a packet of seven at N5,500 and still get your profit of N1,000 from sales.
As we have noted, dropshipping business is a very lucrative and productive business in Nigeria, especially with how low cost-effective it is.
However, while making your profits, you should remember that to maintain a wide profit margin, great care should be taken with your finances.
Managing Your Finances
Open a business account separate from your personal account, where all the proceeds and funds relating to/for your dropshipping business would go, to avoid mixing your profits and funds generated from your dropshipping business with your personal income.
Remember to always record every transaction made in your dropshipping business; whether with your dropshipping supplier, or with your customers for better business clarity and fewer mistakes.
Also, you can place restrictions on your business account for better financial management.
With local suppliers and customers in Nigeria, payments are made easily; the amount stipulated can just be transferred to and from the required parties.
However, with foreign suppliers and customers, there are particular payment channels, also known as payment gateways, that are available to be used by Nigerian dropshipping businesses, which include:
These payment channels allow for payment from/to anywhere in the world.
However, to properly utilize these channels as a Nigerian drop shipper, you should be sure you have completed the necessary processes needed to register your dropshipping business with the Nigerian Corporate Affairs Commission(CAC), which will then qualify you for all the external payments using these payment channels.
Things To Avoid In Your Dropshipping Business
Several things can lead to losses(customer losses, loss of products, loss of reputation) when starting and handling your dropshipping business, one of which involves low-quality goods.
When your customer places an order on particular goods, be certain your dropshipping supplier has good quality goods before making payments, to avoid complaints from your customers, and eventually losing those customers.
Also, ensure you test the shipping feed of whatever supplier you are working with because you want to avoid slow shipping to your customers; in a situation where your customer is expecting their product in two weeks, it would be terrible if your supplier ships off and it is delivered in a month, and would cost you your customer’s trust.
Finally, be certain your supplier is careful in packaging your products before shipping to your customers; you do not want your customers to be aware their product is coming directly from a supply company that isn’t you, or it would ruin your dropshipping business.
The process of starting a dropshipping business in Nigeria involves registering your dropshipping business, finding the products you want to deal in, getting good dropshipping suppliers, creating your online store/website, and promoting your products and your online store.
If this article has been helpful to you, do share it with anyone else you think would need it.