The fashion and textile industry is the second-largest sector in Africa with a value of 31 BUSD and Nigeria accounts for about 15 per cent of it. However, the potential is much greater than that.
With a population of more than 200 Million people, clothing is essentially a need for the Nigerian people be it traditional attire or other clothing brands.
Historically, wealthy Nigerians have shopped abroad for international brands that are not available on the local market.
This is changing as more global and luxury brands are entering the Nigerian market to take advantage of this trend in Nigeria.
You can take advantage of this trend by venturing into the clothing industry in Nigeria, there is a lot of untapped potential.
What is a clothing Business?
Clothing Business deals with the trade production and value chain of clothing.
Why Should You Start a Clothing Business?
Starting a clothing business in Nigeria has its pros and cons, and is left for you to manage it effectively. Here are reasons why you should consider starting your clothing line.
1. Clothing is Essential for the survival of man.
Clothing remains the essential need of man after food and shelter. Everyone needs clothing to make progress in life, such as working and carrying in house activities, no one can work naked, or else they will be referred to the asylum.
2. Clothing is a huge industry in Nigeria.
The textile, apparel, and footwear sector have grown at an average of 17% each year since 2010, according to GDP data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
This development has been fueled in part by increased demand by the huge Nigerian population. Nigeria is home to more than 200 people with a rising middle-class, and there is a need for them to put on good clothing.
3. Clothing is an avenue to promote culture.
Nigeria is also home to more than 500 ethnic groups this diversity has spawned the fashion industry with various styles attributed to each ethnic group. You can decide to focus on making the traditional wear which serves as a non-oil export for the country.
How Do You Start a Clothing Business?
Starting a clothing business is a very personal journey. You’re probably a creative person, with something different to offer in a fast-moving industry. You’ve likely spotted a gap in the market, or have a unique design in mind for a specific customer group.
1. Choose a niche.
Whatever your inspiration for starting up, it’s important to define your niche from the outset.
There are different niches when it comes to starting a clothing business in Nigeria. Your main focus can be Men’s wear, women’s wear, Children’s Wear, fairly-used clothing, or traditional wear.
Knowing your niche, and bearing it in mind. gives you a guiding principle, and a reason to be remembered.
2. Acquire capital.
Capital is needed to start any business in life, and this is not left out when starting a clothing business in Nigeria. You need money when you want to establish a business.
You need to bring in this product from the suppliers or better still acquire materials, machinery and labour to convert those clothes into finished products.
You do not require huge capital to start a clothing business at least for a start. Testing the market is as easy as buying that sample piece of clothing and showing it to your target audience, once they declare an interest, then you get a huge capital and buy in bulk.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can acquire startup capital as a business in Nigeria. Check out the link to the article to learn more.
3. Get a supplier.
Now that you have a supplier, now it’s time to get a supplier. If you are not going to be involved in the manufacturing process, then you need an active supplier to help boost the value chain.
When you’re out there for finding a clothing Supplier, you will first have to ask yourself whether you want to work with national manufacturers in Nigeria or better still decide to source your products out of overseas Custom Clothing Manufacturers, like in China or Pakistan.
Of course, Both These choices have different Benefits and pitfalls. It’s your responsibility to choose which option suits you best in terms of financing, quality, and business integrity.
If you decide to source our suppliers from foreign countries like China, I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can start importing from China with ease, check out the link to the article to learn more.
4. Promote Your Clothing Business.
Once you have created a winning brand and launched your clothing brand, the next biggest challenge is to market your clothing business effectively.
These days, unless you have a ton of money, the best way to start promoting your apparel brand is via digital marketing and social media engagement.
More and more people are buying clothing online and so it is so much easier than trying to reach your target audience via retail and traditional outlets.
1. Tell Your Friends and Family about your Business.
Even if you have more people who shop for clothing online, you still do not have to ignore traditional marketing.
As they say, charity begins at home. Your immediate family should be your first market when it comes to who to sell your business to.
You can reach out to them via phone, or Whatsapp statuses, visit them at home and even distribute flyers to get started.
2. Use Facebook.
Having your own Facebook page for your business is another way to promote your brand to your target audience.
The social media site provides you with a public page that people can have a look at, giving them a more personal feel for what your business is all about.
We’ve all seen or heard about companies having some real shockers on social media, where people have complained and it’s gone viral for example.
Take control of any complaints quickly and professionally. You want to make sure you are responding to comments and messages regularly.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on this blog on how you can utilize Facebook as a platform to grow your business. Check out the link to the article to learn more.
3. Invest in Instagram.
Having an Instagram for your business marketing strategy can help you a lot when it comes to marketing, and if you don’t have an Instagram account and your competitors do, you’re giving them a competitive edge, plain and simple.
If you dont know what kind of content to post to Instagram, look at what your competitors are doing.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can grow your business on Instagram. Check out the link to the article to learn more.
4. Twitter can Bring in Sales.
Twitter is a social media platform that provides access to millions of users. A business that views these users as potential customers and markets to them appropriately stands to gain a great amount of exposure.
Twitter can provide your business with access to audiences around the world while providing an opportunity to interact with customers instead of continuously promoting products and services.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can utilize Instagram to grow your business. Check out the link to the article to learn more.
5. Use Pinterest.
Pinterest works like your favourite photo album that enables users to post, or “pin” images for free on its platform.
One reason why Pinterest shines is that it allows anyone to create links to third-party pages such as your website or any others.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on how you can utilize Pinterest as a platform to grow your business. Check out the link to the article to learn more.
6. Develop an e-Commerce Website.
An eCommerce platform is a software application that performs core business functions to facilitate the buying and selling of goods online.
Modern eCommerce platforms act as a unified system for many operational and customer-facing processes. They provide analytics and reporting, customer support, order and inventory management, and financial accounting.
Launching a physical retail store usually requires a large capital because of rent and employee salaries which most business owners do not have in Nigeria.
In contrast, opening an eCommerce store can go for as little as $100, and all that needs to be set up is a domain and a web hosting platform.
I wrote a comprehensive guide on this blog on how you can start an eCommerce business and make money. Check out the link to the article to learn more.