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100+ Best small business ideas in Nigeria

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In this post are businesses with low capital and high-profit potential. Discover lucrative small businesses in Nigeria.

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Why do you need your own business?

It could be that you want to make money (of course), be your own boss (bear your own risks), make money doing what you like, enjoy more freedom with your life and all the benefits having a business of your own brings.

Whatever the reason, I have gathered tons of profitable business ideas for you in this post and I am sure that by the time you have gone through this post you must find a handful of businesses to consider venturing into.

First, let’s start with businesses in the education niche.

Education-related business ideas in Nigeria:

JAMB, WAEC, NECO, GCE tutorials centre business

These are seasonal businesses kind of but then it keeps jumping from one to the other: after WAEC then comes JAMB, then NECO, then another exam and the cycle continues all year round.

To get started with lesson center for students you need a good location and teachers (usually graduates from our higher institutions) that can deliver quality teaching.

A good location is usually one located at a place not far from one or more secondary schools because your target “customers” is secondary school students.

Also, most students would prefer a lesson center they can trek to from their school.

This is another reason citing your lesson center near schools is a great idea.

Start a children daycare services

Do you like kids and would love to also make money taking good care of them?

In child daycare, your duty is to take care of preschool children. If you help parents look after their little ones they will be happy to pay you for such service.

Digital school business

Many people want to learn digital skills. This comes as no surprise considering that we are in the computer age.

There are many digital skills out there. Take for example web and graphics are undoubtedly two among those “hot skills” that are in high demand in Nigeria today.

Because of this trend, a lot of Nigerians, both the youths and the working class are looking for where to acquire these lucrative skills.

As an entrepreneur, you can open a school that teaches digital skills.

Even if you are not an expert yourself in this area, you can employ someone to do the teaching while you take care of other things like publicity and management works.

Programming/software development schools

Nigeria doesn’t have enough proficient Software developers to cater for its software solutions needs.

The software market has continued to grow over the years. But, the fact about Nigeria is that software is still very largely under-exploited.

Don’t worry about the number of “software developers” already in every street. I am not talking about those ones.

As a smart entrepreneur, you can key into this demand for software skills and make money by offering quality programming and software development training for Nigerian youths who are in dire need of it.

Sell scarce educational and career prep materials online

JAMB past questions are may be easy to find but there are other educational materials that people usually search for but can’t find it easily.

This includes job recruitment past questions of some companies, post-UTME past questions of various higher institutions in Nigeria, educational tools and resources, scholarship exam past questions, government jobs and programs like N-Power questions, etc.

Take your time to find out those career-boosting and educational tools Nigerians are searching for; create a blog in that niche and use that channel to attract the right kind of visitors and sell such materials to them.

Open a “Business Center” inside or near schools

With the rise of personal computer and smartphone, and of course the Internet, “Business Center” as a business seems to be going down gradually.

For example, anyone can use their smartphones now and scan their document. So, why go to a business center for that?

However, there are still people requiring the services of “business centers”, especially in and around school environments.

Many Nigerian students don’t have their personal computers. Also, most O’level and JAMB students don’t have their own computer and will surely need the services of business centers.

In addition to that, certain things are better done at Cybercafes. Examples: NYSC registration, JAMB CBT registration, etc.

Internet and ICT based business ideas in Nigeria

Make Money as a writer

If you have great writing skills make money with it with writing jobs that are available online

Apart from writing for someone as a freelancer, you can write and sell your own eBooks.

Some Nigerians in the writing niche also make a reasonable amount of money at freelance websites like Upwork.com, Fiverr.com and Freelancer.com. These are just three among various freelance websites for writers.

Start a freelance web development business

Web development skills take time to learn but a competent web developer has a number of promising money-making opportunities waiting for him.

One of the ways you can make money in Nigeria as a web developer is by starting a freelance web development business of your own.

What will it take you to start a web development business of your own?

You need to be competent in technologies like HTML, CSS, web hosting, and also learn at least one more web programming languages – JavaScript, PHP, or Python, etc.

With those skills, the next thing is to start thinking about the business aspects of things.

Start graphic design business

You can learn graphic design even if you don’t already have skills. With passion and creativity, graphic design is something you can learn to a proficient level in a couple of months.

When you have the skills, you can start your own graphic design company, creating graphical assets like logo design, banners, business card, flyers, etc.

Become a professional blogger

Blogging is suitable for those who can exercise patience and invest their time to satisfy their audience while building a steady source of income.

Unlike some other online businesses, making steady income with a blog usually, take some time especially if you are entirely new into it.

But if you have the passion, techniques and patience, blogging can pay off.

Start affiliate marketing business

Affiliate marketing is one of the Internet-based businesses that are easier to start because you don’t have to bear much risk.

As an affiliate, you promote companies products and earn commissions per sale.

Sell digital products online

Yet another way to make a steady income is to sell digital products online.

Digital products can be online courses, training, eBooks, videos, etc.

The most important thing here is being able to create good digital products/service worth paying for.

 Sell cakes online

Every single day, especially on weekends, there are Nigerians cutting cakes at different locations.

There is always a wedding, birthday celebrations, anniversary, thanksgiving, etc. The demand for cake is always there.

 Make money with a paid membership website

If you can provide great resources online, you can have a paid membership site that only those who pay subscription fee can access.

Be it business coaching, guitar training, etc., you need to come up with the idea of that thing worth paying for.

 Sell jewellery online

An eCommerce shop doesn’t have to be as large as Amazon or Jumia which is what comes to mind when some people think eCommerce.

You can start your eCommerce that targets a specific niche and try to dominate it or at least carve out your own space.

 Start a digital marketing agency

Every modern-day business wants to grow its web presence because they know that most of their customers are online.

Internet is where the battle is fought, won or lost for many businesses.

Consequently, businesses are looking for competent digital marketers that can help them promote their brands and take their products and services straight to their target customers.

You can become that invaluable digital marketer that businesses are looking for.

Even if you don’t already have digital marketing skills, spend a couple of months to learn, apply and understand. You will be ready even before you know it.

 Make money from freelance websites

Freelance websites are like online marketplaces that connect sellers to buyers.

At most freelance websites, you just have registered and list the kind of services you can offer.

The freelance website is there to connect you with buyers (that is, those who want your services) and also facilitate transactions between the buyers and sellers.

Popular freelance websites in Nigeria include Fiverr.com and UpWork.com.

Profitable AGRICULTURE based business ideas in Nigeria

The Nigerian government have continued to show interest in agriculture.

This implies that the future is bright for agriculture businesses in Nigeria.

Even if we keep aside the special interest the Nigerian government has shown towards agricultural, food is one of the most important needs of every human society and this is never going to change as long as we need food to survive.

This shows that investing in agriculture is both rewarding and important.

List of lucrative business ideas in the agricultural section:

  • Garri production business in Nigeria
  • Produce ice cream, yoghurt
  • Start a poultry farming business in Nigeria
  • Produce custards
  • Make cupcakes, cakes, etc.
  • Start a poultry feed production business
  • Open a small restaurant
  • Catfish farming business
  • Snail farming business
  • Start cake baking
  • Farm cassava and cocoyam
  • Start pig farming/piggery business
  • Palm oil production business in Nigeria
  • Poultry equipment and tools manufacturing business
  • Sell foodstuff
  • Mobile food truck business
  • Start plantain and potato chips production business
  • Sell foodstuff online
  • Open a bar
  • Tomato processing business
  • Open a fast food joint
  • Chicken and egg distribution/supply business
  • Sell perishables/vegetables in the market
  • Cassava processing business
  • Start horticulture business in Nigerian cities
  • Start rice farming business in Nigeria
  • Sell stockfish
  • Honey production business
  • Yam cultivation or processing business
  • Setup a machine where you grind grains and cereals
  • Bamboo stick production business

Handwork/craft business ideas in Nigeria

Phone repairs

Phones are rampant in Nigeria and every now and then there is a phone to repair.

That everyone is using phones in Nigeria today simply translates to more demand for phone repairers who know their work.

No matter where you find yourself if you are an experienced phone repairer you can make money fixing phones.

 Shoemaking/shoe production business

Shoemaking business continues to boom in Nigeria. Think about guys in Aba, what they are doing can be replicated elsewhere in Nigeria.

Nigeria is exporting Aba made shoes.

But whether you are in Aba, Lagos, Kano or any part of Nigeria, shoe-making is a business you can key into.

Learn to make shoes, create your own brand, come up with your own design, tweak already existing design or simply copy designs that are already selling in the market.

 Laptop repairs

Laptops and Personal Computers are now common in Nigeria, especially among the youths and students in tertiary institution across the country.

This means a lucrative business opportunity for someone with proficiency in laptop repairs.

 Electronic/electrical appliances repairs

Before and after everyone started using smartphones, this handwork has been fetching some people steady income.

Laptops and phones are not going to replace other electronics; hence, there is still business for someone skilled in electronic repairs.

 Carpentry/Upholstery business

Most carpentry shops I come across are always busy cutting, joining, smoothing, etc.

Carpentry works are one of those works that are always in demand and that isn’t going to change anytime soon.

 Beauty salon – makeup, Manicure, etc

The beauty shop is another lucrative business that gets many customers. Check most streets and even in remote villages, it seems people can’t get enough of looking good.

If you have the skills, you can start your own beauty shop.

 Hair braiding business

One of the things that make Nigerian women stand is their beautiful hairstyles.

Hair braiding remains a lucrative business as the demand for it is still high in Nigeria.

Small scale manufacturing/production business ideas in Nigeria

Here is a list of small scale manufacturing business ideas for Nigerians

  • Soap and detergents production business
  • Leather bag production business
  • Produce bottled water and sachet water
  • Produce and sell fertilizers
  • Papers, notebooks production business
  • Manufacture plastic-based products
  • Make children’s toys
  • Make handbags
  • Produce insecticides and pesticides
  • Start juice production business
  • Make tissue papers and serviettes
  • Produce nylon and paper bags
  • Start air freshener and perfume production business
  • Produce casings for mobile phones
  • Produce takeaway plates and disposable cups
  • Start a small paint production plant
  • Manufacture body creams
  • Produce pens

Smart business ideas in Nigeria

Match viewing centre business

There is a match to watch every day of the week.

You must have noticed that many Nigerians love football and always troop to match viewing centers on different days of the week.

Depending on your location, you can start a match viewing centre. Get started collecting your money while they shout “Up Chelsea”, “Up Man-U”, “Up Barca”…

Car wash business

Most people who have cars don’t have time to wash them. Since they have to look for the nearest car wash to keep their car clean, you can become that carwash in your area.

Rental business

Rental business can be for anything, including chairs, canopy, generator, plates, and pots for ceremonies; farming equipment, car rental, and many other things people like to rent instead of buying them.

Dry-cleaning business

Dry cleaning business pays, especially in the cities.

In other words, if you are in remote village chances are this business won’t pay off. But if you are in a city, do your plus and minus and see if you should start a dry-cleaning business.

 Gym centre business

Who doesn’t want to keep fit these days? While some people do it for the health benefit, some are interested in building “6 packs”, and others just want to lose weight…

Whatever the case, you can make money from the gym centre business.

 More smart business ideas

  • Waste recycling business
  • Logistics/Courier service business
  • Transportation business

Lucrative home business ideas in Nigeria

List of lucrative home business ideas

  • Hair Salon Business
  • Web Designer
  • Home Daycare
  • Dance Instructor
  • YouTube Channel
  • Personal Trainer on any skills you have
  • Copywriter
  • Clothing Designer
  • Music Teacher
  • Jewellery Maker
  • EBook Author
  • Hair Stylist
  • Interior Designer
  • Social Media Consultant
  • Personal Stylist, helping clients build their wardrobes and put together outfits
  • Dog Groomer
  • Hot Air Balloon Operator
  • Florist
  • Cake baker
  • Wedding planner
  • Professional Blogger
  • Poultry farming.
  • Fish farming.
  • Pig farming.
  • Rabbit rearing.
  • Local garden and/or Irrigation farming.
  • Laundry/Dry cleaning services
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Liquid soaps production
  • Disinfectants production
  • Fruit juice production
  • Air/Room fresher production
  • Poultry feeds production
  • Massage Therapist
  • Restaurant Business
  • Makeup Artistry
  • eCommerce (Online store)
  • Freelance Content Writing
  • Bar
  • Grocery Store
  • Fast food joint
  • Rental Business

Untapped Business Ideas in Nigeria

Untapped in this sense doesn’t mean no one is into these businesses, instead, it is just saying there is still so much money making potentials in the businesses.

Start a drop-shipping business in Nigeria

Thanks to more access to the Internet, drop-shipping business is gaining more momentum in Nigeria.

One of the reasons for this upward trend is that drop-shipping requires small capital to get started.

How does dropshipping work?

In a nutshell, the way dropshipping works is that you serve as a middleman or agent between the buyer and the seller.

Whenever any of your customers place an order, you contact your supplier (one that sells the products to you at a lower price) so you can purchase products and have them delivered to your customer.

Digital marketing business

Every business needs customers to survive. This is why a lot of businesses spend a huge amount of money on marketing.

Small businesses mostly don’t have an in-house marketing team to handle their digital marketing. In fact, even some big businesses don’t have an in-house marketing team.

Therefore, small businesses, individuals, organizations and even some big companies usually look for savvy digital marketers to help them grow their business.

You can be that person they are looking for!

Real estate business

Being a real estate agent presents you with different ways you can make money in Nigeria.

Just in case you don’t already know, real estate agents or businesses make money from landed properties such as rental for houses, buying and selling of landed properties, earning a commission for every property sold through them as agents, and many other ways.

The interesting part is that you don’t go into this business is not capital intensive. You can go in as a middle man (agent) and still make big money.

If capital is an issue for you, read My Experience: How You Too Can Start a Real Estate Business with Little or No Money

Mobile apps development business

With the way mobile devices are booming in the Nigerian market, there are jobs for the proficient mobile developer in Nigeria.

The question is, do you have the skills? Or at least, are you willing to learn the skills?

The future is bright for mobile apps development and software development in Nigeria.

Healthcare businesses in Nigeria

Healthcare is one of those evergreen business niches in Nigeria. Think about health or health-related business you can start.

Some ideas include a fitness centre, nutrition, gym centre, health counselling, pharmaceutical stores, and many more.

There is money to be made in healthcare businesses if you’re an expert in any health or at least can work with an expert.

Start a modern Computer school business

By computer school, I don’t mean the usual shops in every street where people go to learn Microsoft Word, Corel Draw, Excel and PowerPoint.

Instead, I am talking about other digital skills like programming, web design, digital currency, android programming, game development, photo editing, etc.

These skills are high in demand yet the supply is limited and for some places, a quality school to learn those digital skills is hard to come by.

Now you can be that smart entrepreneur and make money by opening such a training centre.

List of untapped businesses in Nigeria

  1. Dropshipping business
  2. Digital marketing business
  3. Real estate business
  4. Mobile development business
  5. Healthcare business
  6. Modern computer training centre business
  7. Web development business
  8. Waste collection business
  9. Animal feed production business
  10. Pig farming business
  11. Online tutoring business
  12. Digital currency business

Other Lucrative small business ideas in Nigeria

Here is a list of small businesses in Nigeria that are profitable and require little capital for you to get started.

Of course, this list does not cover all possible small businesses one can start in Nigeria, but it gives you a lot of ideas to consider.

Small business ideas in Nigeria

  1. Shoemaking/production business
  2. Laptop repairs
  3. Electronic/electrical appliances repairs
  4. Beauty shop, makeup, Manicure business
  5. Hair braiding business
  6. Barbing salon (barbershop) business
  7. Soap and detergents production business
  8. Leather bag production business
  9. Start a lesson centre for JAMB, WAEC, NECO, GCE, etc
  10. Open a small restaurant
  11. Digital marketing business
  12. Match viewing centre business
  13. Car wash business
  14. Affiliate marketing
  15. Start a rental service business
  16. Open a Gym/fitness centre
  17. Start waste recycling business
  18. Logistics/Courier service business
  19. Sell scarce resources online – educational and career prep materials online
  20. Start a child daycare services
  21. Start a “Business centre”
  22. Make money as a writer
  23. Freelance web development business
  24. Graphic design
  25. Sell digital products online
  26. Sell your homemade products online
  27. Start a paid membership website
  28. Produce and sell Garri
  29. Start a poultry farming business in Nigeria
  30. Make cupcakes and other types of cakes
  31. Produce poultry feeds
  32. Farm Catfish
  33. Snail farming business
  34. Bake and sell cakes
  35. Start pig farming business
  36. Sell palm oil
  37. Sell foodstuff
  38. Plantain and potato chips production
  39. Sell foodstuff online
  40. Open a bar
  41. Open a fast food joint
  42. Chicken and egg distribution/supply business

More small business ideas

  1. Sell perishables/vegetables in the market
  2. Start rice farming business
  3. Sell stockfish
  4. Open a grinding mill
  5. Phone repairs
  6. Carpentry/Upholstery business
  7. Produce bottled water and sachet water
  8. Produce and sell fertilizers
  9. Papers, notebooks production business
  10. Manufacture plastic-based products
  11. Make children’s toys
  12. Make handbags
  13. Produce insecticides and pesticides
  14. Start juice production business
  15. Make tissue papers and serviette
  16. Produce nylon and paper bags
  17. Start air freshener and perfume production business
  18. Produce casings for mobile phones
  19. Produce takeaway plates and disposable cups
  20. Start a small paint production plant
  21. Manufacture body creams

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