Starting a phone selling business is the process of buying mobile phones at wholesale from manufacturers, distributors, or authorized dealers, to resell for profit. This business can very lucrative in Nigeria due to the constant demand for new phones, especially among Nigerian youths. It is common to find a Nigerian youth with many phones. Every year, the mobile phone manufacturers release new models of phones, and Nigerians rush up to buy them.
I will go into details on how to start this business, where to buy the phones for resale, and how to sell the phones. Let’s get started on how to start phone selling business in Nigeria.
Follow these steps to start phone selling business in Nigeria:
Conduct a feasibility study
Go to the city and do a feasibility study of this business. There is no need to pay money for this. Go to the most commercial areas in your city and find out the type of business that thrives there. Focus on the areas that deal with Phones and its accessories, since that is your area of specialization.
Go from shop to shop to find out the prices of phones. look at the trending phones and note their prices and write down the items you need to equip your store.
Interview the owners of these stores and get an estimate of the prices of the phones, cost of rent, payment for utility, number of staff you need, where they buy stock and do a rough estimate of viability in any location you select.
Get business mentoring: Before you start the business, meet a person running that same type of business you are about to begin.
Learn things like inventory management, distribution, advertising, how to identify marketable phones, and how to know the right price to charge for different brands of a telephone.
Also, you must know the features of these phones you are about to start selling, how strong each brand is, and be ready for questions from future customers.
Choose the right location for the business
Selecting the right location is a crucial decision to make before you start a phone selling business in Nigeria.
Locate your business near potential buyers like, where you have more young adults. Think about competitors and locate your store correctly and brand yourself to differentiate your business.
You could consider siting your shop near a shopping mall, near schools, higher institutions, and close to other private companies.
You can site your store close to a phone technicians’ shop and in the commercial center of your town that enjoys plenty of Foot traffic.
The look and feel of the environment should be attractive and not a run-down and broken part of town.
- You should ask yourself this question – if you are trading on smartphones, iPhones, tablets, and other gadgets like iPad and iPods, can these people staying in the environment you hope to site the shop afford the products you will stock in the shop?
If yes, then put other things like cost of rent, security and safety, parking, and ease of access of vehicular movement to the area and your budget into consideration.
Write a business plan
One of the most valuable steps, when you consider how to start phone selling business in Nigeria, is writing a business plan.
To build a house, you need to have a building plan. Starting a new venture demand having a plan. If you have a plan, it gives you a full view of the business.
The business plan will contain the vision, mission, your business concept, how much you need to start, physical equipment, rent, how you will get the capital, the location, number of staff, salary, the marketing plan, the monthly expenditure, profit forecast of the business, the cash flow analysis, and the year of breakeven.
Source for Capital
Most people stay off doing business due to a lack of capital. You can get any amount you want if you are willing to show lenders that you can repay if they grant you a loan.
Capital is the life of any business; all other things being equal so, give it a priority when you want to start phone selling business in Nigeria.
There are different sources of capital. They include:
- Grant: You could get a grant from a Nongovernmental organization. Donations are free, but you must show proof of investment of the money to the specific sector that the Donor selects to the local representatives of the International Donor.
- Foundation: You could get money from the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship program. The requirements include applying on the portal between January to the first week in March each year.
- Personal Money: You could start with your savings of at least a sum of N200,000.
- Friends and family: If you have a good credit record and selfless relationships, you could get short term funds from your friends and family. If you are looking for an extra N300,000 to add to your own money, you may borrow N10, 000 from 30 friends and family. Some of them will not accept it when you repay it in the future.
- Get a loan from a bank without collateral: This may seem hard, but you could if you want. All it takes is to provide the banks all they require. Getting this loan could take you up to 6 months, but you will get a loan without collateral. To begin the process, open a Corporate account, supply necessary references, and operate the account, pay all your expenses, and withdraw from it to run your business. Continue to run this account for six months and ask your account officer the requirement for a loan. Make your business creditworthy, and you will get a loan. Banks like Stanbic PLC, Guaranty Trust Bank PLC, and Wema bank PLC give such small-medium enterprises (SME) loans.
Register the business
Another vital factor when starting a phone selling business in Nigeria is registering a business name. Get a name for your business by combining Tech, Phone, and your name to form a unique name that will be available at the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
Hire a lawyer to incorporate the business for you. There are three main ways you can operate this business. You could function as a Sole proprietor, Partnership, or a Limited Liability Company.
Incorporating a Limited Liability will enable you to get loans from banks to expand the business smoothly in the Future.
Learn about tax and get a Tax Identification Number (TIN) for your business from the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and get ready to file your returns each year as a good corporate citizen.
Open a business bank account
Go around your locality and find out the banks that are willing to lend to startups without collateral and open business account with them.
Make deposits into the account and pay all the business money inside this account. Buy all your products or make expenses using this account. Pay business associates and other people with Cheque instead of cash.
Find out how you will get supply for the Phones you want to sell. To be able to sell at attractive prices, you must source your products from the manufacturers or directly through Online portals.
The co-founder and manufacturer of Techno and Infinix Phone is a Nigerian, and he is also the owner of SLOT, a phone retail chain in the computer village Ikeja Lagos, and spread all over the country. Note that Techno and Infinix run on Android.
So, to get wholesale supply, go to SLOT head office inside the computer village, Ikeja to register and buy wholesale for the two brands SLOT markets and their accessories.
You may also visit the Internet to search SLOT websites for any other information concerning the distribution and appointment of resellers for their brands.
As you can see from above, where to buy is another critical decision to make when starting a phone selling business in Nigeria.
Other Manufacturers: Samsung of Galaxy range, Google Android phones, Apple of iPhone brands, all have Nigerian representatives in major commercial cities in Nigeria, visit the ones close to where you live and register to buy directly from them. To locate an Apple reseller, click the link.
Search for phone distributors and sellers online: Visit wholesalers like Alibaba.com and online retailers like liExpress.com to explore how to get direct online supply for your business. Visit these websites not to buy from them but to get an idea of how you could start importing phones from China. The ideal is to start locally, gain the experience before you venture Internationally.
Franchise owners: You may opt to buy from franchise owners if you are unable to buy directly from manufacturers. Find out those that hold the franchise for marketing the brands you want to sell and visit their offices.
Add phone accessories
The next decision to make is selling items that go together with the phones. When you start the company, you must sell assorted phone accessories that match the type of phones you are selling.
These accessories are usually in high demand, and they include selfie stick, mass storage devices/ memory cards, power bank, battery charger, cases and pouches, screen saver, and so on.
Read Also: Mobile Phone Accessories Distributors
Advertising your business
As you plan to start a phone selling business in Nigeria, note that without selling, you have no business. You must try to sell your Phone. Advertising your business is very vital to its success.
First, your location and the environment must be safe, and your customer’s services receptive to customers. Show customers that they are valuable, stock trending products that are affordable, and durable.
Selling involves making your product attractive to the buyer. Put your phones in bright glass cupboards for safety and to attract buyer’s attention. Keep the store well-lit with bright fluorescent light.
Put price tags on the phones and accessories so that you do not waste any customer’s time. The Phone and accessories must appeal to them and meet their need for them to buy.
Other Ways to Sell your Phone
- Pricing and Marketing of your Business: Do not price your product too high and drive your business out of the market. Stay competitive and agile. Get the market price of phones you are selling by visiting other retail outlets, doing online research, and learning of newly launched phones that have hot demands and how much they sell them.
- Digital Marketing: You can consider other ways of marketing your business -like digital marketing instead of the old way of waiting for the customer to find you. Digital marketing is a crucial a phone selling business in Nigeria. As most of your customers are on social media.
- Actively seek more customers daily. Use Social Media like Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat to market the phones which lend themselves to these platforms because they are overpowering and always trending. Create engaging social media posts to send more customers to your online and offline store.
Discount: Offer a discount to buyers online and do home delivery for large purchases.
Website or Blog: Be more adventurous, set up a blog or website for your business, and start creating informative and helpful posts that feature images of these phones to get more online sales. Offer discounts and to deliver phones to their doorsteps in your locality.
Forums:Visit Tech-phone related forums and post about your phones with attractive discounts to draw them to buy from you.
- Selling in Online stores/ Affiliate marketing: Visit these two online stores Jumia and Konga and create an account. Once it is approved, you can upload your products and start selling. Also, you can explore Affiliate marketing in both places. See if you could pay others to sell your products on an agreed commission to the affiliate marketers who sign up to sell for you on these selling sites.
Become an authorized Cell phone reseller
Another decision you could make on phone selling business in Nigeria, is becoming an authorized reseller. In Nigeria, the leading GSM service providers include Glo Mobile, 9 mobile, Airtel, and MTN.
Research their marketing plans, understand how they operate, and select one and then apply to become an authorized cell phone reseller.
To grow their brand as a dealer, write an application, add your business profile, and tell them how you will market their brand, and submit it through their website or to their office near you.
These GSM companies have branded phones, data packs, broadband internet modems, airtime, and so on.
Though they prefer experienced and well-capitalized businesses to appoint as authorized dealers, try nonetheless to get their dealership as an authorized phone reseller to expand your business.
Phones are an attractive and high target device for thieves so, protect your new business. Buy an Insurance cover for your products, and your equipment for doing the business.
Expansion of Your Outlets
Every big business began small, so when you evaluate your options on how to start phone selling business in Nigeria, do not forget to think of a way to expand your new phone business in the future.
In Nigeria, commercial places include Lagos Port Harcourt, Onitsha, Nnewi, Kano, and so on.Look out for flourishing areas in the business center of your city, and site another store there.
In this post, I explained how to start phone selling business in Nigeria. You learned how to start the business, where to buy the phones for resale, and how to sell the phones to customers. These three things cover the whole business of selling anything anywhere in the world. Now, you know the steps to take, start that phone business now.