If you crave for financial independence and the opportunity to make decent money outside the limits of some employer somewhere – then the internet readily offers you just that. There are numerous online business opportunities you can take advantage of in present-day Nigeria without breaking too much of a sweat, running up and down to please another business owner (and probably never getting enough pay).
You will agree it is high time you reap more from the knowledge economy, go online and profit yourself. Here we have prepared a list of some viable and legit online businesses in Nigeria at present you can proudly earn from, and be satisfied on the long run – if you are ready to learn the ropes. We will discuss just ten of them as an eye opener:
- Online Tutoring
- Affiliate Marketing
- Remote work for local & foreign companies
- Selling products & services online (E-Commerce)
- Trading Forex & Cryptocurrency
- Social media work
- Creating and/or selling Digital Products
With computer networking and internet technologies came the convenience of teaching students (and attending classes/meetings) across the internet. You can run a more flexible schedule than you would get from a physical school. Regardless of where the teacher/tutor and the intended student(s) are physically located, so long as the teacher (and student) can provide himself/herself a quiet workstation, an internet-enabled computer or mobile phone/tablet, and the required software or app to facilitate that class/meeting so they can communicate with each other. More and more e-learning websites and apps are engaging online tutors to cater to the needs of students across the world, and Nigeria is not left out.
You do not need to have a product or service to sell before making a profit from any business. Anyone can have a share of a company’s profit by connecting buyers to their product or service online through affiliate marketing. The affiliate marketer registers with the company, then posts his or her unique affiliate web link inside his/her blog, social media page, or website to connect potential buyers to the company’s product or service. Once a visitor clicks the link and buys a product (or perhaps registers as a user), the affiliate marketer earns a commission.
Affiliate marketing is an online money-making opportunity so commonly implemented in thousands of websites today, to get more customers to patronize the company behind that site. While the affiliates get rewarded for driving traffic and sales to their site. Sites like Jumia, Expertnaire, Payporte, Amazon affiliate, Shopify to mention a meager few, offer such affiliate programs to Nigerians and the general public.
Remote Work for Local & Foreign Companies
Remote jobs are those jobs being offered to employees who are allowed to work from anywhere else outside the physical office of their employer. In fact, some online enthusiasts have pointed out that remote work is an online business that more likely rewards the employee far more than working on-site. Why? The remote worker can work from home, or set up a convenient shared or private office space with his computer, mobile phone and internet connection which further reduces hassles and the cost of transportation.
The remote worker can even do more than one remote job, so long as he can effectively multi-task and avoid clashes between them. The essential criterion is for him or her to deliver the job on time and as required, while maintaining communication with the employer. Jobs such as virtual assistants, marketers, writers, ICT workers, social media managers and more, are now conveniently done online from remote locations across the world. And the pay is usually very decent.
E-Commerce is all about buying and selling products and services on the internet. If you have physical or tangible products and/or services to offer people – there are many online channels to promote your business without owning a shop or office. Particularly via social media sites, messenger apps, company website, and search engine adverts. You only need two vital things: to make reliable arrangements to deliver the expected goods or service safely to the consumers; and secondly to implement secure and easy payment methods on behalf of your customer. Social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube have become hotspots for buying and selling. Once you can establish trust between yourself and the customers, keep them engaged with helpful online content, and find out the needs of your potential customers, you will embark on a profitable buying and selling journey.
The business of dropshipping involves the retailer or dropshipper advertising or exposing a product to end consumers, then transfers a customer’s orders directly to the manufacturer or some intermediate wholesaler who ships that product directly to the customer. The dropshipper does not need to buy and store the product in a physical shop or warehouse; nor will he/she be required to handle the shipping costs or logistics. It is a low-cost or even zero-cost online business. Dropshippers make their gain after the shipping fees and cost price have been deducted from the advertised price on the online store – which means the dropshipper is allowed to set his or her own selling price beforehand.
Trading Forex & Cryptocurrency
Forex or foreign exchange simply put, is exchanging one physical currency for another; the buying and selling of physical currencies under the platform of a supervising/ intermediary trading expert or website called a forex broker. These currency exchange rates are dynamic and keep changing on a daily basis because of certain environmental factors that affect currency markets and the economy of a country at large. In the same vein, you may opt to trade in digital currencies or cryptocurrecies such as bitcoin.
Though forex and cryptocurrency exchange in general are quite risky businesses and are generally recommended for those who have significant enough money to invest, there are reliable online forex and cryptocurrency brokers who are willing to take you through the stages of teaching you how to trade and minimize your losses, monitor the changing markets carefully, and offering backup loans. You may even be allowed to invest and trade with smaller amounts of your capital to be on the safe side.
Social Media Work
Social media sites are websites where people interact and exchange information on issues that are of mutual interest to them. As such, these sites naturally became viable channels for connecting with all kinds of people and meeting their needs, thereby promoting business and trade. You may be recruited in assisting other companies or organizations to ‘engage’ their present and potential customers with entertaining or informative content; to handle customer queries, and keep their social media pages active and responsive – this is social media management. Or you may create your own video and text content to entertain or inform people, and get them to like and follow you – you become an influencer. Influencers with thousands or even millions of followers are easily approached by big organisations to promote a product or service and be handsomely paid in return.
Creating and/or Selling Digital Products
If you are a guru at writing books, creating useful software, creating a ‘how-to’ manual to solve problems for others, or creating and recording online classes for willing students – these are digital products that can be easily monetized and turned into a profitable online business. Sites like Expertnaire give creators the opportunity to upload their digital products online and market them either directly, or on their websites or blogs through product links; or otherwise through paid affiliate links.
A blog is the equivalent of an online diary. It is a website or web page belonging to an individual or organization, frequently updated, and written in such a conversational style so visitors can interact and share their opinions freely with the author (and with one another) on the topic at hand. A blogger writes content to give an opinion or share information on a particular subject, allowing visitors to also comment on it. Blogs need to be responsive and remain active to attract more and more visitors. Your blog can easily be turned into an online business with cool returns when you have thousands of followers. Hence you can post your affiliate links on the site, and allow companies to place adverts on the site (for which you are paid) through such programmes as Google Adsense.
Vlogging (or video blogging) is the video content version of a blog. Rather than merely posting text and/or images for the consumption of visitors, entertaining or informative videos are uploaded by the owner of the site in addition to text and images. YouTube and Vimeo websites are famous in this regard. Just as in blogs, vlogs are set up to attract more visitors, get followers, interact with them and thereby expose adverts and affiliate links to them for monetization.
The Poor Alternative to Online Business: A Commentary
Permit me to digress – why wouldn’t you get yourself a decent online business to earn from? Let’s paint a picture of a typical day for the regular 8-to-5 worker in Nigeria. Yes, you heard me right – 8am to 5pm, which is just a theoretical standard. In reality, lots of workers in Nigeria begin their daily grind at work even earlier than this, depending on what they do.
- Nurses and government health workers;
- station attendants;
- street cleaners;
- civil engineers and their co-labourers;
- transport workers and drivers both private and government-paid;
- security personnel;
- restaurant, eatery and supermarket staff;
- certain bank workers;
- ICT and technical staff in some companies;
- factory workers, and some others not mentioned here.
Few of them may be lucky to run shifts. You can see them in droves panting and sweating profusely as they jump vehicles and hurry along in the morning – in an attempt to beat some 6 am, 7 am or 7:30 am resumption time. Which meant that such a worker could have necessarily woken up around 4 am to get ready for work. No assurance of when he or she would eat breakfast, unless one or two snack vendors are within reach. And after all the hard labour – to leave the office and get quality rest may pose another headache. There is just no closing time in some workplaces, as your workload or your boss(es) could stretch you beyond the agreed time (and quite likely without payment for overtime – ask any teacher).
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