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How to Start Shoe Business in Nigeria: Pro Tips



Shoe Business in Nigeria

Shoe business is one of the businesses in Nigeria that has been in Nigeria since the inception of buying and selling. And it will not end or go away because shoes are necessities – we cannot do without them. Yes, just like the clothes we wear every day to cover our nakedness and to be fashionable, we wear footwear to protect our toes and they have come to stay for good.

Asides from the fact that we wear shoes to protect our toes from sharp objects, and cold we also wear shoes to be fashionable. In fact, it is even said that the type of shoe a man wears determines whether he is rich or poor. This is why the shoe business in Nigeria just like the clothing business in Nigeria is profitable.

In Nigeria, as far as I know, based on what I have seen most shoe sellers in the Nigerian market sell. There are 5 types of shoe businesses in Nigeria.

Is Shoe Making Business Profitable?

So, I am guessing the next question on your mind after I finished talking about the different types of shoe business we have in Nigeria is this. Yes, really how profitable is the shoe business in Nigeria? Well, asides from the other points I have mentioned earlier, the shoe business in Nigeria especially when it comes to selling online can be very profitable.

This is because it saves you a lot of expenses yet increases your profit. It saves you a lot of expenses in the sense that it saves you from the cost of renting a shop for your shoe business, it saves you other costs that are also associated with renting a shop (operating cost) like electricity cost, staff cost (salaries), and more.

In the shoe business in Nigeria that has to do with selling online, the only cost you can majorly incur is the cost of delivery. And this cost can be transferred to your customers if you are not willing pay for it. So in a business like this, you are basically the author and finisher of your business so to say.

Footwear Business Ideas in Nigeria

The are many footwear business ideas in Nigeria. You just need to choose the one that is more profitable depending on your area. The different types of shoe businesses in Nigeria are:

1. Men Formal shoes business

2. Leather sandals or slippers making business

3. Women shoe business

4. Baby shoes business

5. Rubber shoes and sandals Business: This business usually thrives and yields massive profits mostly during the rainy season and can be sold to primary and secondary school students. So before you start a shoe-making company in Nigeria you need to really sit down and do deep thinking on which type of shoe business you want to really go into.

My best advice here is that you do not just make this decision on your own as these decisions can be based on sentiments. Make this decision based on the type of shoe business that sells the most in Nigeria – particularly in your area. And if you have enough capital in starting the business, you can go into all types of shoe businesses all at once.

How to Start Footwear Business in Nigeria

Steps on how to start a profitable shoe business in Nigeria.

1. Decide the Type of Shoe Business

I know earlier I talked about the types of shoe business in Nigeria and you deciding the shoe business that is perfect for you before venturing but this is totally different. It is different in the sense that you need to decide whether you want to be manufacturing the shoes yourself or you just want to buy and sell the shoes.

If you want to be manufacturing your shoes yourself you need to learn how to make footwear yourself or get someone (a shoemaker) that will be manufacturing these shoes based on your demand and specifics.

If you do not have time and you do not want to concentrate on that you can simply be buying your shoe ready-made from popular markets in Nigeria like Eko/CMS market in Lagos state, Onitsha market in Anambra state, or Aba market in Abia state.

So you really need to think about which path you really want to follow in this business. There’s also another option for you which is you buying your shoes straight from China by using websites like Alibaba.com and importing them to Nigeria to sell online.

2. Get the Required Capital

Whether you are going to be making the shoes yourself or you are going to be buying the ready-made shoes to sell, you need to get the capital you will need to start the shoe business in Nigeria. The capital you will need to start a shoe business like this can range from N100,000 to as much as N500,000.

This capital will not only cover the buying of the shoe but also cover other important parts like creating packaging packs or nylons, transport, and the like. However, if you cannot afford N100,000 you can still start this business with N50,000 or less. The most important thing here is to be able to sell these shoes on time and use the profit made to continue to buy more shoes.

This technique will grow your shoe business right from small to big. Read our guide on how to start business in Nigeria with no money.

3. Buy or Produce your Footwear

If you have decided to buy the shoes to sell instead of making to sell, the next step here is to proceed to the market to buy your shoes. Remember the 3 popular markets I mentioned earlier? These are the market you should proceed to buy your shoes. If these markets are far from you, you can go to any popular clothing market in your location around you to buy the shoes.

When buying the first set of shoes for your shoe business in Nigeria you should pay attention to these 3 major things.

1. That the shoes sold to you are of good quality.

2. That the shoes are in good condition at the time you are buying them.

3. That the shoes you bought are complete before leaving the shoe store. This is to avoid any story that can arise as a result of you getting home and realizing that your stock is not complete. After buying the shoes and you have taken them home, the next step for you here is to put the shoes in a cool dry place where they can remain new till they are sold.

4. Start Selling the Footwear

From what I have said earlier, selling shoes in Nigeria should not be difficult because shoes are necessities. Because everyone wears shoes all you have to do is to start by selling them to your families and friends first.

Visit them one after the other with some of your new shoes and sell to them but avoid selling to them on credit as this can sink your business even before it starts. After this, you can now proceed to start selling your shoes online in Nigeria.

5. Selling your Shoes Online

To start selling your shoes online in Nigeria, the first step you should take is to get a good phone with a good camera. There are so many phones now that come with a good camera nowadays you just have to check them out. I do not want to mention any brand here because “hey” none have paid me to advertise for them but trust me you will find phones that give a studio-like feel if you take your time.

After doing this, get a white bedsheet, lay it on any surface you will like to snap the pictures, and start snapping the shoes one after the other. You can snap them in pairs or snap only one leg. If you have money and you see this process as stressful, you can get a photographer that can snap these shoes for you.

The photographer should not charge more than N300 – N500 per picture. After taking these pics, start uploading them on Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook. All the social media websites you use but stick to the ones you know you are going to get more sales from and upload there regularly.

As time goes by your friends online will begin to order online and buy from you. After this, the next step for you here is to register your products (shoes) on Jumia and Konga.

6. Selling Shoes on Jumia and Konga

To sell your shoes on Jumia or Konga is not free because they will charge a certain amount of money for every shoe sold on their platform. However, this should not stop you. You can simply add this expense to your shoes and make customers that buy the shoes pay instead of you. Also, try to make sure your shoes are at moderate prices on the platforms. 

The average customer on these platforms does not like it when goods are overpriced. Here is what I mean. For example: let us say the shoe is worth N7,000 after adding the cost of the shoes and profit. Do not say the shoe 15K. These will chase customers from buying from you on this platform.

After registering on Konga and Jumia as a seller, the next step here is to register as a shoe seller on Jiji.

7. How to Sell Your Shoes on Jiji

The function of Jiji is similar to that of Jumia and Konga but with a little difference. It is different in the sense that it is totally free to advertise your products there. All you have to do is upload pictures of your shoes on the website giving the prices and your phone number so that when people (customers).

Then visit your Jiji profile they call to check out your shoes and call you to buy them. Jiji is free but in other, for you to reach more customers faster, you can run ads.

A. Give Terms and Conditions Selling Online

When it comes to making big profit selling shoes online in Nigeria, there are rules you need to make and there are things you need to do. One of the rules you must put in place is:

B. No Return Policy

Yes, I talked about this in the YouTube video of this article. Some customers can be very funny and sometimes they can try to outsmart you by saying the shoes you sold to them are not good or they are not worth the price. These sets of customers often say this not because this is true but because they want their money back after using the shoes they bought.

This can be a bad market for your business so you need to put the rule that all shoes bought in good condition cannot be returned just to make sure you and your products are protected.

C. Customer Should Pay for Deliveries

I talked about this earlier, if you really want to make money from selling shoes online in Nigeria you need to transfer all expenses to your customers, not to you. Expenses like delivery fees should be added to your customer’s goods alongside the price of the goods.

D. Good Customers Service

You must be able to provide good customer service despite the fact that you are selling your shoes online. If customers order a kind of shoe and it is not available to be quick to respond that the shoe is not available and tell them when it is. Go the extra mile to stand out from every other online shoe dealer in Nigeria.

E. Have a Reliable Shoe Dealer

It is important to have a reliable shoe dealer in Nigeria that you buy your shoes from. I’m saying this because there are so many shoe dealers in Nigeria that will spoil your shoe business by selling bad shoes to you. You do not need to have many shoe dealers to buy shoes from. All you need is one that is reliable and will never disappoint you.


Believe you will succeed in this business and you will. Believe you will fail in the business and you will. Asides from all that you have learned from this topic it is all about your mind and what you believe. That is all on this topic. I hope I was able to cover all that you expected.


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Ralph Bamigboye is an Accountant. He is the owner of TheInfoWorth.com, NetWorthVerse.com and Finance Naija YouTube Channel. He has helped many individuals to start their businesses and make money online. How can he help you?

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