Small scale business ideas in Nigeria 2024

Over the years, small business ideas have offered a plethora of opportunities for millions of entrepreneurs to earn a living from countries around the world.

This very reason has made starting a small business a go-to idea for most people in need of a means of income or survival.

Although there are hundreds of business ideas anyone could start and make a good living from, depending on their resources, not all business ideas are worth your time and effort.

In this post, I’ll be listing out some of the most relevant and lucrative small business ideas you can start offline in Nigeria or any other developing country, in the following paragraphs.

Catering, restaurant or food vending is one of the popular small business ideas any one could start with very little funds.

Outside the fact that the food niche is an evergreen niche that’s always on demand, catering is one of the age long businesses that’s never out of sales.

Regardless of where they are, people are always going to have to eat food because it’s a basic need.

So your services as a food vendor will always be in high demand.

The good thing about catering as a small business idea is that you can decide to break it down into any segment depending on your expertise.

For example you can open a restaurant, food mall, bukka or cafeteria where you sell popular delicacies to people of all kinds.

Where this is not your forte, you can decide to sell and supply food to people at homes individually or at parties.

Either ways, you can always decide how involved you want to be with your food business or not.

But one thing to watch out for is the fact that the food business can be highly time consuming and demanding.

Opening a retail store or local shop where you sell every day essential items is another top small business ideas popular in many localities.

With your store you can stock and sell items ranging from normal groceries and household items to other fashion accessories among other high demand products needed in your locality.

Alternatively, you can open a shop or grocery store where you sell only specific items like food items etc.

Where you can sell common high demand items at your shop you’ll easily get patronage that will lead to business growth.

TIP: In situations where there’s high competition in the neighborhood, you can decide to sell very specific items with far fewer competitors.

With this you’ll get to garner more specific needs and repeat customers.

Clothing is another basic needs of humans. Regardless of the economy or economic situation in your country, people will always wear clothes.

This makes tailoring or fashion design services one of the top small business ideas you can start from anywhere.

While this is not necessarily as time consuming as the others, to start a tailoring business you’ll need some training or trained tailors to run the business for you.

Small scale business ideas in Nigeria
A barber shop or beauty saloon is one of the top small business ideas to start with low capital | Photos by RDNE Stock project via Pexels

As soon as you’ve gotten the needed training, you can purchase your tailoring machines and then have your business set up.

Outside setting up a tailoring shop, you can also sell clothes directly to final users.

This could involve buying and reselling clothes based on the purchasing power of the neighborhood you live in, selling new clothes you make or ultimately importing your materials.

Regardless of your financial statement, you can start either of these businesses and then grow it to incorporate the others at intervals.

Are you a barber, beautician or someone versatile in hair making? Then starting a beauty saloon or barber shop could just be the perfect small business idea for you.

Think about it.

Even in inner cities and rural areas, hundreds of people are barbing or making their hair on a daily basis.

Young and old, people are getting to have their hair cut or made into different styles that fit them.

If you’re a skilled barber, you can start your own barber shop where you take care of people in need of barbing services.

As a hair technician for women, you can also set up your beauty saloon for female hair needs.

There are so many options you could use to make your beauty saloon stand out.

For example you could incorporate pedicures, manicures, massage, body treatment and related beauty care services.

Depending on how you decide to run it, you can attract very specific kinds of clients to patronize your business.

From lower to middle and upper income, you can choose your preferred target clients at the onset or grow to incorporate them as you work on the business.

You can combine both businesses to cater for male and female clients or you can set to target a specific kind of clients.

And where you can’t really provide these services yourself, you can pay experts to work for you while you run the business.

In a fast moving world where the demand for fast food and snacks is increasingly on the rise, baking and pastry making has gradually become one of the hot small business ideas for entrepreneurs.

Considering that street food is a thing in many cities, you can start your own pastry business and make a decent income out of it.

As someone that’s already skilled in baking and pastry making, you can get started in a popular street corner or rented shop.

All you want to do is make and sell popular street food, pastries and all of that.

Where you don’t have baking skills, you can learn the skills for a few weeks or months before getting started.

Good thing about this business is that it doesn’t require a lot of upfront investment.

With some decent funds, you can hit the ground running and then re-invest into the business until it grows to the height you want.

In most urban centers, the increase in urbanization and very busy lifestyle of city dwellers have pushed dry cleaning into one of the top small business ideas any one can start and make a decent earning.

Good thing is, regardless of who you are, you’re going to have to wear clothes.

And when you do, sometimes you’ll not have time to wash and iron them if you’re very busy. This is where the need for a laundry man comes in.

In most areas, the number of reliable laundry men are never enough.

Depending on where you are, you can choose to fix the gap in your neighborhood by setting up your own laundry services.

Setting up a laundry business equipped with modern facilities and offering efficient services can attract busy professionals and households in need of convenient garment care solutions.

And just like the other businesses, you don’t have to be there to run it.

Small scale business ideas for offline business
Setting up a laundry business is also another small business ideas that is in high demand | Photos by Pexels

You have the option to hire people to run the business for you while you work on the side or you can engage in it full time

Transportation and logistics services is one of the top small business ideas you can get started with little capital.

To make a mark in this industry, there are many options to choose from.

For example , from motorcycles to tricycles, mini buses and buses, you can use either of these as a means to get started.

The best part is, if you’re living in a city with a bustling and growing population, then there’s already an existing demand for reliable transportation services.

And you can step in to make this happen while smiling to the bank in return.

Also instead of transportation, you can choose logistics to get started with.

Both options do have a generous demand and long standing market as far as the movement of people and goods is concerned.

To get your logistics business a step higher, you can get yourself a website or mobile application to get started with.

Final Words

There are a ton of small business ideas you can start in Nigeria or any part of the world today and make a decent income.

But one thing is certain, for some reasons, not all the business ideas are realistic or ideal for you.

In this list we’ve listed out some of the top small business ideas that are high demand for people in almost all locations but it’s still your job to choose the ones that suits you based on your resources and location.

After you do start your business, remember that things like your resources, location and quality of service are very crucial to success in this field.

And beyond getting started, you have to put in the work, create awareness about your business and consistently put out excellent work if you really want to grow.

Of course, from getting you visibility to promoting your business, you can reach out to us to for counsel and further guidance here.

Now, it’s your turn. What are your challenges when it comes to starting your own small business? Drop your comments below.

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Victor Winners

Victor Winners

A Nigerian trained Law graduate and British LL.M candidate, using his widespread experience in tech, law and innovation, to evolve cutting edge and growth driven solutions for brands and businesses in Africa and beyond. As a Law-trained tech expert, Victor brings in over 7 years experience working in the Digital Marketing, SEO, Web Development, Online Publishing, Social Media and Legaltech sectors, to create result driven content and innovative solutions to brands and businesses. Named as one of the top 50 Web Design Influencers Globally, Victor Winners started one of Africa's most widely read blogs on Digital Marketing and Strategy. With this platform, he has impacted the lives of over 2 million readers spanning more than 135 countries in 8+ years

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