Since the year 2000, when the internet was still in its infancy, the world of online entrepreneurship has blossomed. Today, you can make a living from the comfort of your home, thanks to the countless digital nomads who’ve set up shop virtually whilst hanging out on the streets of major cities around the world.
Notwithstanding the flexibility of working remotely, the convenience of online marketing for most industries, and the reduced overhead of operating an online store or blog, not all entrepreneurs can benefit from the growth of the internet. For instance, the cost of living in major cities like New York or London is just too great for those looking to make money online from home.
The Evolution Of Online Entrepreneurship In Nigerian Context
In an effort to counter the ‘nomad’ or ‘digital nomad’ label often applied to those who work remotely for a living, let’s revisit the evolution of online entrepreneurship in Nigerian context.
In the 1990s, many Nigerians in search of better opportunities and a higher standard of living travelled abroad. This flow of capital into Nigeria was unprecedented. Between 1990 and 1995, the number of Nigerians living in the UK rose by 139%, from 40,000 to 134,000. Since the early 2000s, the number of Nigerians in London has risen by 47%. These figures only account for those who moved abroad, not including the many who remained behind and began an online business in Nigeria.
With the rise of the internet in the mid-2000s and the subsequent explosion of online entrepreneurship, it was only a matter of time before the trend began to take root in Nigeria. The result is that today, many people in the Western Africa nation are pursuing entrepreneurial activities remotely, with 78.1% of Nigerian internet users now accessing the web from their mobile phones.
Why Are So Many Nigerians Turning To Online Entrepreneurship?
It is not always easy to pinpoint the exact reasons why someone chose to become an online entrepreneur. However, the primary driver behind the boom in Nigerian e-commerce, digital nomadism, and online tutoring is the desire for financial independence. With a growing middle-class, urban population, more and more people are enjoying the freedom of being their own boss.
The flexibility of being able to work remotely appeals to educated and ambitious people in particular, providing them with the opportunity to pursue financial independence. According to a recent Smartparenthood report, 70% of digital nomads in Nigeria cited financial independence as the number one reason for starting their businesses online. With the cost of living in major cities such as London or New York skyrocketing, more and more people are looking to reduce their costs online – either by running a marketing agency from home or by taking online courses to upgrade their skills.
Entrepreneurship has historically been frowned upon in Nigeria. However, this is changing as the country’s young people, particularly its educated elite, are increasingly embracing the opportunity to make their own way in the world. According to Enola Aina, co-founder of Nigerian-owned lifestyle blog Take Me Out, “Nigerians are more open to alternative ways of making money now than they’ve ever been, particularly since the country’s economy has started to improve.”
What Is The Future Of Online Entrepreneurship In Nigeria?
The world of online entrepreneurship is in a state of flux, with countless opportunities available online and the ever-changing landscape of e-commerce reshaping how businesses operate and gain the trust of customers. However, some industries are still thriving, particularly in the digital nomadism space, providing people with the flexibility to work remotely and the chance to make a living from the comfort of their homes.
According to Future Inc, a leading provider of online marketing courses in Nigeria, “e-commerce in Nigeria is predicted to grow from £11.1bn in 2021 to £16.3bn by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate of 12.47%.” This is primarily down to the fact that more and more people are benefiting from the flexibility of working remotely – with 70% of Nigerian internet users now accessing the internet from their mobile phones.
The trend towards remote work is impacting all industries, not just e-commerce, and is changing the way business is done. To keep up with the evolving demands of customers and the ever-changing world of business, it’s essential for companies to develop a remote workforce. However, not all businesses will be able to survive this paradigm shift. For those looking to create long-term financial security, the option of becoming an online entrepreneur is likely to be the perfect fit.