Have you ever want to launch your own logistics business in Nigeria but don’t know how to start or what exactly to do? I’m going to show you an easy and practical approach to starting a profitable logistics or delivery business in the country.
Do you know that some businesses are complementary to others? Yes, they work for the benefit of both businesses. And in this age of the Internet, the tendency to shop online continues to increase as the days go by, hence, the need for a complementary service, that’s a service to fulfill the deliveries.
Logistics or delivery business in Nigeria or any place in the world is not ending soon because almost all e-commerce business owners or companies are now on the internet and they need a logistics company to help bridge the gap between the end of the buyers.
Just in case you don’t know much about the logistics business, below is a quick explanation;
Understanding How Logistics Business Work
In a business sense, logistics aid the movement of goods/services from the manufacturer/wholesaler to the consumer. By definition, it sounds simple but by the implementation, it is rather complex. This is why manufacturing firms sparingly have their own logistics team—relying on an independent logistics company.
Logistics companies are tasked with the responsibility of the planning, implementing, and movement of goods, services, and other valuables from the point of origin to the final consumer. The origin of logistics can be traced back to world war 1 (WWI) and WWII where the military had to make supplies available for their soldiers.
Logistics is now a full-fledged business today and lots of money can be made. This is why I’ve made this post to guide you on starting a logistics business in Nigeria.
If you have ever shopped on Jumia, Konga, Amazon, Aliexpress, and other top online shopping sites, I’m sure you understand that the guy or company that picked the products from the manufacturer’s warehouse and delivered to you, in operating under what we know as logistics business.
Now, let’s talk about starting your own logistics business in Nigeria or anywhere in the world!
How to Start a Logistics Business in Nigeria: 10 Steps!
#1. Develop Your Business Plan
Writing your business plan is the first step to take when starting a logistics business in Nigeria. Many take this for granted but having one is pretty important. You really don’t need to have good writing skills or be a business expert before crafting a good business plan.
Although, there are a lot of services that can assist you in generating a business plan I advise you to write manually or hire the someone who can personally do it for you.
Since your business plan will be your guide as you grow your logistics business, a personalized version will always come in handy. I won’t go into great detail here as we already have a post on writing a business plan and a free template.
So, let’s talk about the next important step!
#2. Get Your Capital
After your business plan, the next thing is to get your capital – which you know is very important. And there are several ways you can source for your capital. You can choose to finance it personally or get a loan from the bank.
- Here are top banks that can offer you loans in Nigeria.
- Also, check these loan apps in Nigeria
Getting a loan or financing your logistics business yourself has its pros and cons and it’s totally up to you. Lots of commercial banks would be willing to offer you a loan, you can as well apply for business grants which will save you from the stress of providing collaterals.
Once the funding is acquired, the next step is to;
#3. Get an Office Space
You don’t need a big warehouse, but an office where you can attend to clients and enquires in case a company or a customer need to see you before transacting with your company.
Ensure your office is well decorated, not beautifully but professionally.
- Your main office should be separated from where you keep customer goods
- Your office should be easily located, don’t rent an office space very far to the main road
- Your business location should be google (You can hire me for this)
If you’ve got your office space, then do this:
#4. Choose Your Delivery Mode
Logistics business in Nigeria can take different forms. We’ve got companies who make use of motorcycles, buses, mini-vans, or trucks. You can start with one of these, or you could mix them up for flexibility.
Knowing what means to use for transportation will determine what you choose to use as your capital. Using a motorcycle/bike means less capital expenditure but also, it limits you to carry certain goods.
Also, you’d be choosing between:
- Intra-state (e.g within Lagos state)
- Inter-state (e.g Within and outside Lagos state – to Kwara State, etc.)
- Inter-countries (e.g from the USA, China, etc to Nigeria)
Or perhaps, you can decide to do both but keep in mind that you’ll have to learn more travel routes in a short span of time.
Okay, the next up in purchasing the tools needed for your business and also, hiring some personnel to fill out different positions. From our definition of logistics, it is very evident that you will be needing a good number of workers to ensure everything is carried out seamlessly.
#5. Buy Necessary Equipment & Vehicles
You need to buy important Items like computers, stationery, dispatch box, telephones are some of the important items needed to run a successful logistics business in Nigeria. With these and more in place, it is expected that you have an effective logistics business like the top brands in the country.
Considering your mode of delivery, you can buy some motorcycles or small buses and brand them with your business identity, just like the like of Jumia, etc.
Some logistics companies also partner with taxi drivers and okada riders to fulfill the deliveries instead of using their own cars, motorcycles, and drivers.
If you want to deal with inter-countries, then you need to grow your network with aviation companies.
#6. Setup a team or Employ Staff
About getting the necessary requirements, the next big deal is to set up your own team or employ some people to work with you.
Also, make sure to hire staff to fill out different positions and not just drivers. Asides from delivery, business management, customer care service, and planning need to be top-notch which the driver can’t do.
This team or staff includes;
- The drivers (if you have motorcycles or buses)
- The customer care agents
- The marketing team
If you don’t have enough money to pay staff, you can hire university students, or those people who are smart and conversant enough, then train them yourself or hire an expert to come and train your team.
#7. Register Your Business
If you want your logistics business in Nigeria to be taken seriously as a business entity, then getting your business registered should be a top priority for you. These days people are getting more aware of fraudulent businesses. Failure to register yours puts up a red flag for potential customers.
Looking at it critically, the cost of registering your business with the Nigerian Corporate Affairs Commission isn’t expensive, so why not do it? Starting with N10,000, you can register your business in Nigeria. If you have a business name already for your logistics company but don’t have enough funds to register, you can reserve your business name for 6 months with just a little token of N500.
If you need me to register the business for you, it cost N25,000 and I will get your business approved and your business registration certificate will be sent to you, or you collect it yourself.
#8. Go Digital with Your Business
The world is digital itself, all businesses are going digital and if you’re not on the internet, then you don’t have a business yet. And when I say you should go digital, I’m not saying you should just open social media pages and that’s all.
You should try and get a professional website, do your google business listings, list your logistics business on business directories, do Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and of course, your business social media pages are important.
We can also handle your digital marketing, google business listing, SEO, and other digital or remote tasks you need us for.
Remember that most of your customers are online, you also need to get your business and the first approach is to get a business website for your logistics business in Nigeria.
#9. Brand Identity Design & Branding
Business identity and branding will really differentiate your business from other logistics businesses in Nigeria. When it comes to branding, you need the service of a professional graphics designer.
Note that some graphic designers are not experts when it comes to branding.
Branding is more than designing a logo, it involves anything that will make your business stands out. Brand Identity designer offers everything ranging from your logo, icons, social posts banners, ID cards for your staff, brand your company vehicles, brand your office equipment, and everything brandable.
This is very important and it goes along with your marketing, that’s what I’ll be explaining last!
#10. Market Your Business.
You’ve come a long way in starting your logistics business in Nigeria. As a new player, unless you’re extremely lucky, no one is going to find out about you. Which is why you’ve got to market your brand.
The top logistics firms in Nigeria like GIG Logistics, Creseada International Limited, Ocenj Logistics, and more didn’t get to where they are today by chance. They sent the word out about their business and then delivered on the customer’s expectations.
And in this age of the Internet, it’s much easier to market your business by using available tools like social media. Remember, you’ve got to offer something different from the rest, or make a service offered by your competition better. With these, your logistics business will soar to great heights.
Part of your marketing strategy is to try and connect with e-commerce website owners or companies in Nigeria so that they can recommend you to their customers. Try to reach out to these companies and your business network will continue to grow.
CONCLUSION – How to Start a Logistics Business in Nigeria
E-commerce is getting bigger by the day in Nigeria and this is why the logistics business in Nigeria as a complimentary service is getting more traction. And yes, like every business, this has its own risks but with a good management team, these risks can be reduced to its bare minimum.
At the moment, the logistics space in Nigeria isn’t that saturated which is a good reason to start as soon as you can. As you do, keep in mind the steps above as they’ll be your guide when you experience obstacles.