Back in the days, people who were importers & exporters were revered in society as getting into the importation business required huge capital and it was a business niche for wealthy people but with the advent of the internet and technology, anyone with just-enough capital and technical know-how can get into the importation business and succeed exceedingly.
Just like many other business ventures, before delving into mini importation you must have an understanding of the business or else you will lose a lot of money.
In this post, I will let you know about everything you need before going into mini importation and the necessary steps to take in order to succeed in this thriving business.
Mini Importation Definition
Importation is the purchase of a product(s) from a foreign country for reselling or use in another country.
In mini importation, goods can be imported in any scale, large, medium, or small, depending on your budget/capital. In order for profit to be made in the business, the goods have to be imported from a country where it is cheaper and sold in another country where it is highly demanded and consumers are willing to pay more. This explains why a lot of mini importers source their goods from China as it is way cheaper there and hence higher profit margin when those goods are being sold in Nigeria.
This is because the cost of labor in China is very cheap which makes the final price low and contrary to what you’ve been made to believe, all goods from China aren’t inferior as the majority of products around us and even in Europe are actually made/assembled in China. Countries like the US and various European countries ensure that products coming from China to these countries do not compromise in terms of quality because they set very strict standards which the Chinese usually adhere to.
Reason for Popularity of Importation Business & need to try it
Requires less capital: Going into mini importation requires less capital when compared to other highly profitable businesses in Nigeria.
It can serve as a side hustle: As things get tougher economically in Nigeria, multiple sources of income is no longer a luxury but fastly becoming a necessity.
Can soon become your major source of income: If done aright, mini importation can definitely become your major source of income as we’ve seen people ditch their 9-5 job to go into importation as it later became highly profitable.
Requirement For Mini Importation
(1) A Personal computer or smartphone
(2) An internet connection
(3) A Visa or Mastercard
(4) Valid e-mail address
(5) A valid physical location where your goods will be delivered to
(6) A substantial amount of capital (Depending on the product you want to import)
(7) A valid phone number
Things That You Don’t Necessarily Need For Mini Importation
(1) You don’t need to be a millionaire first before going into mini importation.
(2) You don’t need a license to import goods in order to go into mini importation
(3) You don’t need to be a computer/internet guru
(4) You won’t need to travel out of the country or even need to obtain a visa
(5) You won’t need a shop/store in Nigeria
Steps to be taken
(1) Select a Product you want to import
There are several goods one can import from China, ranging from clothes to gadgets, machines, furniture, electronics, and the list goes on.
Here is a list of everything You Need to Consider Before Selecting A Product
(a) Your Capital:
Your capital will be a major determinant in selecting a product you wish to start importing as some goods require huge capital which you might not be able to afford when starting out first as a mini importer.
(b) The Demand of the product in Nigeria:
The product you want to import should be in high demand in Nigeria in order for you to sell it quickly when it arrives and consumers have to be willing to pay more for you to make a profit. See a list of hot selling products to import & make profits in Nigeria HERE!.
(c) Government Policies
This is another thing you have to understand before selecting a product that you want to import into Nigeria because some products are considered illegal by the government, importation ban might have also been placed on the product you want to import, and also taxation should be another thing to consider as that will definitely have an impact on your profit. Laws might also be in place to keep in check the quantity of a product that can be imported at a time to the country. All these you need to have knowledge of before throwing in your money. You might need a lawyer to break certain things down for your, especially the taxation aspect.
(2) Register Your Business
For an e-commerce business to thrive in Nigeria, trust is a key factor. And as you will be also selling the product(s) online too, you will need to win the trust of your consumers before they can easily pay money online to you to get the product. One easy way of gaining the trust of consumers in Nigeria is registering your business as customers readily trust registered businesses.
See details on how to register your business with CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission) here.
(3) Find A Cheap & Reliable Import Portal
After selecting a product(s) that you’ll want to be importing into the country, and probably registering your business, the next step would be looking for a reliable and cheap source to supply you with the product in China.
This is the stage where you need to tread carefully and be smart as there are a lot of scammers out there that will promise to send you goods but will disappear or cut you off once you pay them and there are also those who will supply you with inferior goods, so you need to be careful.
After getting a website that you want to be making your purchase from China, you need to check the website reviews online on other websites, you need to check users/costumers reviews on the site on the product page and be sure that others have left positive remarks about the site and product before sending in any payment to them.
Some of the cheapest and reliable import portal/sites from China is 1688.com, Alibaba.com, AliExpress, dhgate.com, and many others. Just take your time and make research as this is one of the steps that require some work and precision if you’ll need to make a profit in the importation business.
After selecting a website in China that has the product that you want to be importing, then you need to sign up with the site. Signing up with them isn’t rocket science as it is just as easy as opening a Facebook account. Then select the quantity of the product(s) you want to import at the time before moving to the next step which is payment. You can even make way more profit if you can get direct contact or relationship from a manufacturer in China as it will even be cheaper and more profit will be made.
(4) Make Payment
Making a payment to foreign countries/business partners is another thing that the internet and advancement in technology have made way easier than before as you won’t need to visit the bank or go through a tedious process in order to make payment as you can do that from the comfort of your home.
And you don’t need to worry about the seller receiving your money and not delivering your goods as some of these sites protect their costumers via what is known as “Buyers Protection” or “Escrow”. That is, when you make a payment on these sites, the money doesn’t go to the sellers account just yet as the website holds the money until you confirm that you have received your order and it is just as described online before they then proceed to send the payment to the online seller on their site.
With a Visa or Master Card, you should be able to make the payment at ease from your mobile phone or computer.
(5) Product Delivery
There are two types of product delivery
(1) Free Shipping: Here the product(s) takes a longer time to be delivered and it is for free. About 20-30 days.
(2) Premium Delivery: Here the product(s) takes way lesser time to be delivered and extra money has to be paid for delivery. Usually takes about 2-4 days.
(6) Selling Your Product
After going through all the steps listed above and finally getting your good(s) at your doorstep, the final step is now selling the good(s) at a higher price than the capital invested. You can sell them offline i.e in shops or in your neighborhood or you can sell them online, which is the best as you can reach more people who are willing to pay more.
See this post in order to know how to sell anything online in Nigeria HERE!
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