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How to Make Money Online in Nigeria as a Student (In 2024)

Introduction

As a former student myself, who only recently graduated in 2020, I understand the challenges of balancing your studies and the quest for getting additional income. 

Many students need help finding straightforward information online that helps them make money while focusing on academic success.

The key is to seek out opportunities that not only generate sufficient income but also offer you the flexibility required for effective studying. 

In this article, I’ll share practical insights on how a Nigerian student like you can start making money online without spending a dime. 

Perhaps, like my experience, you might find a sustainable source of income that way and continue with it even after graduation.

Let’s get started


Idea 1: Blogging and Content Writing

As a student in Nigeria, You may have heard of blogging and content writing multiple times and might have asked, 

“How would writing for blogs make me money?”

This concept is topping my list because it is relatively the easiest option to get into for a Nigerian student looking to make money online and also looking for flexibility. 

To be honest, I have made over $1,000 a month writing content and blog posts for the client acquisition process for foreign clients and that means you can do it too 

But the first question is: 

Where Do I Learn How To Blog or Write Content?

I’m not going to leave you hanging and simply tell you that you can do content writing or blogging as a student in Nigeria. 

There are platforms where you can get into content writing for free

And the funny thing is, some of these platforms will give you free digital certificates that you can add to your LinkedIn profile to showcase that you’re a professional content writer.

The platforms are

Platform 1: Hubspot Academy

Hubspot academy offers you access to basic digital marketing courses, including content writing, blogging and SEO courses, and even offers you blogging and content writing templates that you can utilize as a newbie. 

You can get into the academy for free, by clicking here.

Platform 2: SEMRush Academy

SEMRush Academy also gives you access to a full-blown content marketing course for free and even includes SEO courses as well.

You can get into the academy by clicking here.

How Do I Find Foreign Clients To Hire Me As A Blogger or Content Writer? 

There are a gazillion ways to find foreign clients, but the underlying concept is majorly split into two broad methods which are

  • The inbound client acquisition methods and 
  • The outbound client acquisition methods. 

For the sake of keeping things simple, I’m going to show you one easy and pretty fast way (an outbound client acquisition method) that I used to find my first client who paid me about $250 (N250,000+) per month on Linkedin. 

You just have to take two steps in this method:

1. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile 

The first step is to optimize your LinkedIn profile to carry certain key phrases that a professional client or recruiter might input into the LinkedIn search bar when looking for a freelancer. 

For example, if a client is looking for a social media marketer for his startup company 

People who have “Social Media Marketer For Fintech & SaaS Startups” would easily show up for that client.

2. Use The LinkedIn Boolean Search With Keywords

Using the Linkedin Boolean search simply means, just like a recruiter, you can also input search phrases into your Linkedin search bar to find people talking or who have made posts about hiring a content writer. 

Simply input the “Looking for content writer” phrase in your search bar

Filter by “Posts” to see posts that people have made that has the phrase “I’m looking for a content writer” in it

(Tutorial Video coming soon on this so make sure to be a subscriber)

3. Sign Up On Freelancing Platforms

Take advantage of freelancing or job search platforms like Fiverr and Upwork.

These platforms can help you find clients who are actively looking to hire your service for their businesses

(For More Tips, Subscribe To My YouTube Channel)

What Else Do I Need To Get A Good Blogging or Content Writing Job?

  1. You need a portfolio to showcase the jobs you’ve done. 

Clients like it when you show them what you can do instead of simply telling them or trying to convince them.

I made a YouTube short video below on how you can build a portfolio if you’re just getting into content writing.

  1. You need to be able to show professionalism. 

Being a student does not mean you can not be professional with your dealings, approach or conversations.

  1. Take more certification exams. 

Even after becoming a content marketing professional or content writer. 

Nothing stops you from taking a few extra courses that can buttress your portfolio and make you more attractive for foreign and local clients. 

An example of such courses you can take is SEO Certification Courses


Idea 2: Manage Social Media For Businesses

Most people see social media as a way to showcase their luxurious lifestyle or show off, 

But if you’re a smart Nigerian student, you can learn how to use social media to help businesses with the client acquisition process  (also known as the leads generation process

and then you can offer the service to both big and small brands. 

Here Are Some Stats That Prove You Will Get Jobs As A Social Media Marketer- Especially If You Know How To Use It To Bring In Sales

If you’re more interested in becoming a social media marketer as a Nigerian student, you can employ these stats as part of your sales conversation to convince businesses to work with you 

1. 86% of consumers say they are more likely to trust a brand after following them on social media.

Source: Sprout Social, “In The 2023 State of Social Media Report

2. 60% of consumers say they have discovered a new product or service through social media.

Source: GlobalWebIndex, “Social Media Trends 2023

3. 77% of consumers say they are more likely to do business with a brand that responds to their social media inquiries.

Source: Sprout Social, “The 2023 State of Social Media Report

4. 57% of consumers say they are more likely to recommend a brand to their friends and family after following them on social media.

Source: Nielsen, “The Social Media Report 2023”

5. 76% of consumers say they have made a purchase as a result of seeing something on social media.

Source: Social Media Examiner, “The 2023 Social Media Marketing Industry Report”

6. Social media marketing is 61% more cost-effective than traditional marketing methods.

Source: eMarketer, “The 2023 Social Media Marketing Forecast”

What Would Be Your Typical Duties As A Social Media Manager?

As a social media manager, some of your work will be, using social media sites like LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok or even YouTube to provide services like

  • Creating eye-catching and engaging content
  • Jumping as a brand into conversations or trends around the business 
  • Creating an online personality for a brand and even 
  • Helping potential customers who have questions or problems as it relates to the solution the company provides on social media. 

But all of these are just ideas on what you can do, how can you learn how to be a social media marketer or manager professionally?

Platforms that can help you become a social media marketer as a Nigerian student for free

Platform 1: Hubspot Academy 

Again, as I mentioned above, Hubspot Academy provides you with all you need as it relates to learning the fundamentals of managing social media accounts. 

You can access a free social media marketing course here and get a free digital certificate to add to your LinkedIn profile as a social media manager.

But How Do You Find A Job As A Social Media Manager/Marketer?

As I first mentioned above, you can 

1. Employ your LinkedIn profile

Using the Linkedin Boolean search simply means, just like a recruiter, you can input search phrases into your LinkedIn search bar to find people talking or who have made posts about hiring a social media marketer. 

Simply input the “Looking for a social media marketer” phrase in your search bar

Filter by “Posts” to see posts that people have made that has the phrase “I’m looking for a social media marketer” in it

(Tutorial video coming soon on this so make sure to be a subscriber to this blog)

2. Sign Up On Freelancing Platforms

Take advantage of freelancing or job search platforms like Fiverr and Upwork.

These platforms can help you find clients who are actively looking to hire your service for their businesses

(For More Tips, Subscribe To My YouTube Channel)


Idea 3: Learn And Build Apps For Business Using “No-Code App Development”

Because there are many business owners and entrepreneurs who want to build their own apps, the demand for people who know how to code -software developers- has become so high!

Even people like UX/UI designers, Product Managers and many others became high in demand and businesses paid good money to hire these service 

(which means you can train to become any of these guys)

However, one of the ways you can make hotter money online as a student in Nigeria, is to learn how to build apps without writing code. 

How Does One Become A No-Code Developer?

It’s simple, there are many software known as no-code app builders and this software help you build apps by using drag and drop interfaces

So if you’re a student all you have to do is learn how to use any of these no-code app builders to build a functional app and offer the service to local businesses around you

Examples of no-code app builders you can learn include: 

There are many other no-code app builders that you can research for building no-code apps, but the next question for you will be, 

How Do I Learn To Use These No-Code App Builders?

To be honest, there are not many of these no-code app builders with a professional class, however, you can try using the YouTube channels and playlists for these no-code app builders that I listed below 

1. Bubble 

Access the playlist here

2. Flutterflow 

Access Playlist here

But the next question still stands, after you learn how to build the no-code apps.., how do you find clients to hire you?

How To Find Clients To Hire You As A No-Code App Developer

1. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile 

The first step is to optimize your LinkedIn profile to carry certain key phrases that a professional client or recruiter might input into the LinkedIn search bar when looking for a freelancer. 

For example, if a client is looking for a mobile app developer for his startup company 

People who have “No-code Mobile app developer For Fintech & SaaS Startups” would easily show up for that client.

2. Use The LinkedIn Boolean Search With Keywords

Using the Linkedin Boolean search simply means, just like a recruiter, you can also input search phrases into your Linkedin search bar to find people talking or who have made posts about hiring a content writer. 

(Tutorial Video coming soon on this so make sure to be a subscriber)

3. Sign Up On Freelancing Platforms

Take advantage of freelancing or job search platforms like Fiverr and Upwork.

These platforms can help you find clients who are actively looking to hire your service for their businesses
(For More Tips, Subscribe To My YouTube Channel)


Idea 4: Become An Affiliate Marketer

Although affiliate marketing has been given a bad PR in Nigeria, it is still a viable way to make money online as a student in Nigeria if you know what it truly means and entails. 

Affiliate marketing simply means, you sell online on behalf of businesses or refer customers, which could be family and friends to them 

And you take a commission as agreed. 

Affiliate marketing is split broadly into 3 categories which are; 

1. Cost Per Lead/Commission Per Lead Affiliate Marketing

Cost Per Lead (CPL) or Commission Per Lead Affiliate Marketing is a model where you can earn a commission as a student for generating leads for a business.

Instead of getting paid for when there is a sale, you will receive payments for driving potential customers to take a particular action, such as 

“signing up for a newsletter or filling out a contact form.”

Advertisers pay you as an affiliate based on the number of leads generated through your marketing efforts, making it a performance-based marketing strategy.

2. Cost Per Sale/Commission Per Sale Affiliate Marketing

Cost Per Sale (CPS) or Commission Per Sale Affiliate Marketing is a model in which you earn a commission for each sale you generate through your marketing efforts. 

In this model, you will only receive compensation after the referred customer completes a purchase. 

This method is the most common one for online course sellers in Nigeria.

This approach ties your earnings directly to successful sales.

3. Revenue Share Affiliate Marketing

In Revenue Share Affiliate Marketing, you earn a percentage of the revenue the business generates from the customers you refer to them. 

Instead of receiving a flat fee or a fixed amount per sale or lead, you will get a share of the total sales made by the business through your referral.

The commission is typically a percentage of the sale amount, for example, 20% of any amount bought.

And, it is usually ongoing, which means you will continue to earn as long as the customers you referred continue to make purchases.

How To Become An Affiliate Marketer As A Nigerian Student

Step 1: Research A Niche With Good Money & Audience:

Choosing a niche that fits your “authority” — as well as a suitable audience or product — will help you make money as an affiliate marketer.

For example, you could decide to focus on online courses about health if you’re still a medical student and have a knack for sharing health tips like Aproko Doctor.

Step 2: Choose An Online Platform:  

You need to pick an online platform you’ll be using for selling the products (digital or physical products) you want to be selling as an affiliate marketer. 

It could be social media platforms like Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube or even Blogs like this one, and newsletters. 

Just ensure that you pick a platform you understand well and one that’s accessible to the target audience you’re selling your products to.

Step 3: Find And join affiliate programs or marketplaces. 

There are many legitimate affiliate programs and product creators in Nigeria. You can easily find digital course creators on Selar.co or Expertnaire.com

You can also join the Jumia affiliate program or even become a referral affiliate partner for apps like Opay, Kuda and Piggyvest that pay you to refer a user to their platform.

Step 4: Create high-quality content. 

The content you create to promote the brand (or product) you’re affiliated with and must also be top-notch and reflect your strong knowledge or authority in that industry.  

For example, you could make YouTube videos, Instagram Reels, TikTok videos or write a blog post to showcase tips and tricks about the industry, niche or product you’re selling

Step 5: Market your content and your platform. 

If you have some money, you can try using paid ads, WhatsApp marketing to your contact list or direct word-of-mouth marketing.

Your aim is to get people to see the content you made and click your affiliate link (or download an app and use your referral code)


Idea 5: Start An E-Commerce Business

Although e-commerce is an online money-making model that is quite popular amongst students in most Nigerian universities. 

You can either, sell the same products in a different way, or sell newer products if you know exactly how to research for them. 

With almost everyone you know on WhatsApp peddling clothes, shoes, makeup kits, skincare products and bags, etc. 

You can do your eCommerce business as an affiliate, which means you don’t really have to own the products, you just need to post or create content around the product, then go to the original vendor, pick up the product and sell at a commission or profit.

How To Research Products To Sell With eCommerce-If You Have The Money To Invest In Buying Them

Tip 1: You can type “Unconventional Products” into your TikTok Search Bar”)

Tip 2: You can type “ Product Ideas” into your TikTok Search Bar”)

Or you can simply visit this URL to watch the video shown above.

But once you find the products or find a vendor locally who wants to be affiliated with you 

The next step will be for you to figure out how you can sell them differently and online 

3 Ways To Sell Your e-Commerce Products Differently As A Nigerian Student

Step 1: Create an e-commerce store. 

You can use popular platforms (like Jiji, Flutterwave, Jumia and Konga) to get started, 

But you can also try out the Pocket by PiggyVest app by Piggy Vest which is being recently rolled out free for vendors. 

Most of them are also free to use and straightforward for customers.

Step 2: Start a social media page to promote the product/store. 

Marketing your product is one of the hard hurdles to conquer especially if you’re doing it online. 

You have to promote your store and products via TikTok, Instagram, LinkedIn or whatever platform you find most-easy to use and that your target audience uses.

You must also create engaging, informative and entertaining content such as “how-to-use videos”, “how-to-install videos”, “common-mistake videos”

You can also use your social media page to gather feedback from customers and handle customer complaints.

Step 3: Offer Great Customer Service 

Since you can make a lot of money from e-commerce as a Nigerian student, you can decide to build a brand while at it.

Also, make sure to use reliable logistics services for the delivery of products to customers to ensure continued business from customers. 


Idea 6: Start A Niched Online Tutorial on YouTube

Usually, starting a niched online tutorial on YouTube as a student can be a very lucrative venture with lots of benefits for you 

Some of Your Benefits Include 

YouTube’s monetization options for content creators, such as the YouTube Partner Program, where you can earn money through ads revenue that advertisers. 

As your channel grows, you may also explore sponsored content, affiliate marketing, and other income streams.

Why You Would Make Money From Tutorials On YouTube 

If you create niche tutorials that align with academic subjects or skills 

It will attract a specific audience of students interested in learning. 

Students of your school (or department), in particular, may find your content valuable if it supplements their coursework or helps them understand challenging topics.

The good thing is, students of other schools may also join and subscribe which also increases your views.

If your tutorials serve as a supplement to physical classes or tutorials, you also have the potential to build a loyal and repeat viewership among students. 

Also, if you demonstrate your expertise through YouTube tutorials, especially in teaching a course you studied as well

It serves as a valuable addition to your portfolio in the future and showcases your ability to communicate complex ideas effectively, which can be beneficial for career opportunities.


Idea 7: Join A Cryptocurrency Affiliate Program

Cryptocurrency and forex is one industry that has been estimated to earn people a lot of money, AND YOU CAN EVEN FIND that it is quite popular among many students in Nigeria like yourself.

However, directly trading on crypto platforms may require you to have some startup capital.

So, instead of being the crypto trader yourself, you can sign up as an affiliate for a crypto-related program.

How Do You Set Yourself Up?

First, you can establish yourself as a crypto-topics-related authority or expert by using your social media channels to break down and explain complex crypto topics such as how crypto and crypto platforms work 

For example, you can try to -explain the blockchain system/technology- in a more local and relatable way

This will make people see you as the go-to source for any information regarding cryptocurrency.

Then the next step will be monetizing it

  1. You can sign up for a crypto affiliate program, like Binance Referral or Huobi Referral or you research available forex platforms and their commissions/offerings
  1. Then you get enthusiasts who are interested in trading online to sign up on the platform and get paid simply for signing them up 

Also in some revenue share deals, you can even get paid commissions on the trades your referrals make on these platforms!


Idea 8: Start A TikTok Real Estate Agency (Realtor) Service or Local Influencer Business

You can start a TikTok-based real estate agency service as a Nigerian student and it can be a creative and lucrative venture if it catches on, especially considering the growing trend of using TikTok as a real estate review platform,particularly in urban areas. 

Why Would This Work For You?

TikTok has gained popularity as a platform for many students with a lot of people spending ours on the platform.

Using it for real estate reviews and property showcases can help students to get quick insights into available properties, making it an ideal space to reach a younger audience.

As a student, you will leverage TikTok’s short-form video format to create engaging virtual tours of rooms, apartments, flats, or self-contained units available for rent. 

You will showcase the amenities in the video, the pricing details, and the unique features of each property in a visually appealing manner and then you can geo-tag it to each location

How Should You Go About It?

Since your focus is on student housing, you can tailor your content to address the specific needs and preferences of student renters. 

You can highlight the proximity of the apartment buildings to universities, public transportation, and other amenities that matter to students in that area

To build trust and credibility, you can add informative content about the local real estate market, rental tips for students, such as light and water conditions in that area and any updates or changes in regulations that may affect renters. 

If you position yourself as a knowledgeable and reliable source in the niche. People will trust a fellow student faster and patronize you more!

Monetization: How To Make Money From It

You can work on building a following on TikTok by consistently sharing high-quality property tours. 

Then you monetize your efforts by generating leads or renters. 

You engage with your audience from TikTok, encourage them to make inquiries, and then you liaise with landlords or building managers to facilitate the rental process. 

You can charge a commission or fee from the landlords or house managers/agents successful leads that result in rented properties.

You Can Even Go A Step Further By Collaborating with Local Businesses: 

Many local renters and agents do not often upsell or go the extra mile for their customers.

However, since you are a student, you can also make further partnerships with local businesses, such as furniture stores, cleaning services, or moving companies (or students who help with moving in), which provides you additional monetization opportunities. 

You can feature these businesses in your videos, run ads for them and charge them for it or even ask them to pay you a commission on your referrals which creates a win-win situation for both parties.


Idea 9: Become A Middleman For Cryptocurrency and Gift Card-Affiliated Deals

During my university days, I assisted individuals who came across gift cards or Bitcoin, whether from clients, relatives abroad, or online transactions. 

My role involved converting these assets into the local currency, the Nigerian Naira.

Typically, I would inquire with various vendors, both Chinese and local, to ascertain the prevailing exchange rates. 

Subsequently, I would slightly lower the rate by a few Nairas and pocket the difference as my transaction fee.

Why should you consider this opportunity? 

Numerous Nigerian students engage in work for foreign clients, maintain connections with friends and family overseas, or participate in cryptocurrency trading. 

This ongoing demand for reliable and efficient in-person exchange services presents a consistent opportunity.

By capitalizing on this situation, you stand to generate substantial income for yourself.

How Do You Go About This? 

Honestly, to succeed with this method online 

it’s crucial to maintain consistency, a good reputation and establish a system for building a contact base among local students who might need the service.

Personally, I heavily relied on WhatsApp, particularly utilizing the status feature, as my primary method for generating patronage.


Idea 10: Partner With A Delivery Company-If You Have Means Of Mobility

As a student in Nigeria, having a bicycle, motorbike, or car opens up the opportunity to register on a food delivery app like Rideeats.

By becoming a delivery partner, you can earn money online by providing ride services within the town and also make income through delivering food from hostels to offices on campus or within the campus vicinity. 

The flexibility of this allows you to do it in your free time.

Conclusion

While these ideas and proven concepts can generate online income—some more lucrative than others—it underscores the importance of hard work, consistency, and maintaining a good reputation for success, whether you’re operating in the online or offline sphere.

In essence, nearly any offline business can be transitioned to the online realm, and by simply focusing your efforts on identifying such opportunities, you can discover a viable source of income or even a potential business idea for yourself. 

Temitayo Michael

Clients and customers acquisition expert. Digital Marketing Freelancer and copywriter. Lover of Christ and a fan of Lhasa Apsos

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