The world may be gradually moving away from the Covid 19 pandemic and all the trauma it
brought alongside, but one effect, which happens to be a positive one, that will linger for years
to come is the new normal of “work from home” that it introduced
Agreeably, a lot of people across the globe have held jobs where they had to work from home or
from remote locations and were known as freelancers before Covid struck, but the idea gained
massive popularity and acceptance, especially amongst young people during the heat of the
covid 19 pandemic
Locked down at home with restrictions on movement and with nothing to do other than scroll
through the Internet, a lot of people discovered that they could actually put their skills to good
use by offering them to people who are in need of them and earning a lot of money in the process.
Some never returned to their old jobs even after the lockdown was lifted and economic
activities returned to normal in their countries – because they had discovered how easy it was to
make money online and attain financial freedom by simply offering their skills.
You probably know a couple of people who say they are freelancers, and you can see that they
are making so much money and you are wondering how you too could hop in and start to work
on your own terms
This post has been written for you, as you would find the complete guide to starting a freelance
business in Nigeria in the post covid world.
WHO IS A FREELANCER?
A freelancer is someone who has a specialized skill and offers this as a service independently
to people while getting paid on his own terms. When you compare this with someone who works
at a 9-5 or a regular salary job, a freelancer is not tied to a single employer, may not have to be
in a physical location to work and does not earn a fixed salary.
There are many advantages to starting a freelance business as a Nigerian, especially now that
the awareness has risen and there is a high demand for freelancers to work on specialized
projects. One of the advantages is that you can considerably increase your earning potential.
Freelancers in Nigeria earn between $100 to $1000 per project.
This is more because you are not tied to a single employer who might demand that you work for
longer hours. As a freelancer, you can decide to take as many gigs as you can handle per time
and get paid for each.
Asides from that, being a freelancer exposes you to global platforms and opportunities. You can
work with clients from outside of Nigeria and earn in different currencies, not to talk about the time
flexibility that comes with being a freelancer
Suffice it to say that being a freelancer is synonymous with being self-employed, giving you
complete charge of your time and finances.
That being said, being a freelancer is not a walk in the park. There are steps you need to take,
which we will be discussing in this article. However, before we go on to talk about the various
steps you need to take to build your freelance business, let us talk about the various skills that
you can build your freelance business on
HIGH IN DEMAND FREELANCE SKILLS THAT CAN BE EXPLORED IN NIGERIA
Freelancers offer their skills as services to multiple clients. There is a wide range of skills, but
the truth is that not all of them have the potential to help you build a truly successful and
profitable freelance business. There are those that are in higher demand than others. Some of
the high-in-demand freelance skills are;
● Content Writing
● Proofreading and editing
● Social media marketing
● Virtual assistance
● Social media/community management
● Online security and ethical hacking
● Coding and web development
● Mobile app development
● User testing
● Accounting and Bookkeeping
● Video editing
● Graphic design
● Search engine optimization
● Blockchain technology
● Data analysis
Becoming a pro at any of these is not difficult at all. You will basically need to invest time
and resources to learn any one of them, then start to market yourself. Choosing which of
these skills to build a profitable freelance business on will depend on your passion, but
beyond that, it will depend on how profitable and high in demand it really is.
A pro tip is to choose a skill that has problem-solving potential. For instance, organizations
would always want to advertise their businesses using social media and they would need digital
marketing professionals to help them. Similarly, most start-ups and small business owners in
developed countries like the US do not have the resources to hire full-time employees.
Therefore, they rely on virtual assistants from third-world countries to help them with diverse
STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO STARTING YOUR FREELANCING BUSINESS IN NIGERIA
Before launching out as a freelancer in Nigeria, the following steps are very crucial.
Carry out Niche Research.
If you don’t already have a skill, the first thing you need to do is to carry out niche research.
The purpose of this is to help you decide what skill to gain mastery of that will give you
better chances of success because as earlier stated, not all skills are profitable.
A niche is basically your area of speciality within which you can perform different tasks or
offer a wide variety of services for your client. For instance, if you choose to become a digital
marketing consultant, you could run paid ads, you could write ad copies and design landing
pages, which are all part of digital marketing
Carrying out niche research is pretty easy. You can use a tool called Google trends. With
google trends, you can get a graphical representation of how much in demand the skill had
been over a specified period of time. There are also a good number of very informative
articles like this one on google that can show you the hottest skills that you can sell as a
Build Mastery of your chosen skill by getting trained
Training is essential because you cannot give what you do not have. You can take online
courses or get an experienced coach to train you.
There are many free and paid online resources to learn your chosen skill(s). Some of my
EdX- This is my absolute favourite. You can access many great courses on EdX for free.
Just enrol in the free Audit Track.
Skillshare- you can learn as much as you can for free on Skillshare for thirty days. In
thirty days, you may be able to learn enough to get you started as a freelancer.
Shaw Academy- Like Skillshare, you can enjoy free courses in your first 28 days. Again,
you may be able to get enough skills to kick off your freelancing journey.
FutureLearn- As a Nigerian, FutureLearn may well be your best choice of all the learning
platforms. This is because FutureLearn has partnered with the British Council and a
number of learning institutions to create accessible learning for learners in low and mid-
income. Therefore, FutureLearn has many free courses.
LinkedIn Learning- With LinkedIn Learning, you have a one-month free trial. So, if you
believe that you can learn a skill that is enough to jumpstart your freelancing journey,
you should certainly give LinkedIn a try.
Coursera- you can learn for free on Coursera if you don’t need the certificate. This is
great because as a freelancer, most clients are simply interested in the quality of what
you can offer them, and not your certifications.
Class Central- According to their website, their goal is to make online education work for
everyone. Their courses are often free or free to audit. Enjoy!
Udemy- Udemy prices range greatly. However, there are about six hundred short
courses that you may want to look into.
YouTube and Google- You would probably be surprised to know how many freelancers
taught themselves the skill that they currently monetize. Really, if you don’t know where
to start from, you may want to just check Google or YouTube.
Despite how awesome most of these online learning platforms are, there are people who would
prefer to learn from coaches., if you happen to be one of those, just ensure that you train
with someone who is truly knowledgeable, and one who would be accessible enough to
address all your questions.
Build your Portfolio
A portfolio is a rich compilation of your work experience – much like a cv. This is what will help
you build trust with clients and scale faster. But this can be tricky when you are just starting out
and have little to no experience.
Pro-tip; After learning a skill, you can start to offer your services for free in exchange for their
testimonials and reviews. This will even give you the opportunity to practice and gain experience
before starting to market yourself on freelance platforms or elsewhere
Promote your skill
Now that you have learned a skill and built a portfolio of experiences, you can now start to put
yourself out there. When it comes to getting gigs, there are many ways to go about it. let us look
at the various ways you can do this
● Create Business Cards. Business cards put a professional outlook on your brand and
increase the likelihood that you will be trusted. You give out physical copies of your
business card to those who are likely to be interested in your offers
● Use paid promotions; You can use targeted ads on platforms like Facebook and
Instagram to create awareness about your skills and services. This would require you to
part with some money, but it is a fast way to grow, and it will be worth it in the end
● Use your social media account. You can use your personal social media account like
Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to create awareness about your services. You will need
to optimize your social accounts and create content that portrays you as an authority in
● Join freelancing platforms. Upwork and Fiverr are the most popular global freelance
platforms for freelancers to get high-paying gigs. However, there are also great freelance
platforms for Nigerians by Nigerians and one of them is our very own NaijaPackage,
which is a skills marketplace where freelancers can make money from.
In conclusion, becoming a Nigerian freelancer, especially in post covid world is a great way to
become financially independent. However, it involves choosing and learning a high-in-demand
skill so that your chances of success will be high. There are also several steps that you will
need to follow to become an established freelancer in Nigeria, all of which we have covered in this blog post