Nigerians have raised lots of questions about freelancing in Nigeria, some of them are how can I become a freelancer in Nigeria?, how much do freelancers make in Nigeria?, which are the best freelancing sites for beginners in Nigeria? etc.
Having been in the freelancing industry for over 5 years now, I thought it wise to write an article that will answer most of the questions raised about freelancing in Nigeria.
And without further ado, let us begin by getting to know what is really freelancing.
What is freelancing?
Freelancing is the means by which a professional or an expert is hired to deliver a service on a contract basis. This means that a freelancer can never work as an employee or be placed on any salary structure.
Oftentimes, freelancing will give you the opportunity to start working from home and make money online without having to meet a client one-on-one, and this type of freelancing is known as remote freelance.
How to become a freelancer in Nigeria.
To become a freelancer in Nigeria you need to have a profession or job you have expertise in so that people can hire you to render your service for them. For example, if you are a photographer or videographer like myself, people can hire you to shoot and edit photos or video clips for them.
Below is a step-by-step approach you can follow to become a freelancer in Nigeria.
- Choose a freelancing job.
- Develop or refine your freelancing skills.
- Have a foreknowledge of the industry you are going into.
- Buy your freelancing equipment.
- Set goals that will help you become successful.
- Build an online presence.
- Promote your freelancing business.
1. Choose a freelancing job.
Since freelancing is all about rendering a particular service for a client on a contract basis, you need to have a job in order to become a freelancer.
There are lots of freelancing jobs that are in high demand now, and you can choose one or more for yourself.
For instance, as a freelancer in Nigeria, I am into photography, videography, web design, freelance writing, SEO, social media management, digital marketing, etc.
And as you can see, there is no limit to the number of jobs you can choose as your freelancing service long as you have the knowledge and experience of how to execute and render those services.
If you’re not an expert in any kind of job, it is never too late to start training or learning about one now.
2. Develop or refine your freelancing skills.
Based on the kind of jobs you have chosen for your freelancing service, you need to develop or refine the skills that will help you to become successful.
For instance, if you want to become a freelance writer, you must have research and writing skills. This means that you must know how to spell words, punctuate them accurately as well as be able to correct any grammatical error that may arise while you are writing.
You can read the article I have on this blog about the best skills needed for freelancing and learn about the ones that align with your freelancing job.
3. Have a foreknowledge of the industry you are going into.
It is an error to attempt to enter any industry you know nothing about, and freelancing is never an exception. Therefore, if you want to become a freelancer in Nigeria you need to have a fore-knowledge of the freelance industry.
And the easiest way to have the fore-knowledge of the freelancing industry is to read, listen or watch what established freelancers are utilizing their experience to write or say.
Below are a few ways you can do so:
- Reading blog posts or articles.
- Watching tutorials on YouTube.
- Listening to podcasts.
- Enroll for online courses or webinars.
- Joining and interacting in online forums.
- Connecting with professionals in the industry through emails, DMs, using the contact forms on their blogs, etc.
4. Buy your freelancing equipment.
Your freelancing equipment will depend on the kind of freelancing services you are offering. But the most important equipment every freelancer needs is a mobile phone, laptop, and internet connection.
This is because you need to build an online presence that will enable you to go searching for clients.
5. Set goals that will help you to become successful.
Even after having a foreknowledge of the freelance industry, you need to figure out the roadmap that will help you attain success as a freelancer.
And the best way to do so is to set goals that will help you to become successful.
For example, if you don’t have any proof of work when starting out, you can invest a little to get proof of work you can show to your clients. If you are a web designer, you can build at least three to five websites and showcase them on your portfolio.
6. Build an online presence.
This is the most important part of becoming a freelancer in Nigeria. Because building an online presence will enable you to showcase your work to attract potential clients.
For example, I have trailers, clips, and videos I have shot and edited on my Freelance videography site and you can check it out now: taculiaentertainment.com. This has really helped me a lot to get clients who patronize my job.
Below are some of the ways you can build an online presence:
- Build your own portfolio website where you can showcase your work to attract potential clients.
- Join freelancing platforms that will enable you to create an account, showcase your job, and get connected with clients, one such platform is fiverr.com.
- Create social media accounts where you can also showcase your work and attract potential clients.
- Join freelancing forums where you will meet and connect with both established freelancers and potential clients.
7. Promote your freelancing business.
After building an online presence, don’t sit around and expect clients to start falling from the sky rather promote your freelance business and reach out to potential clients immediately.
Below are some of the ways you can do so:
- Use paid ads like Google AdSense or Facebook and Instagram ads. The former is expensive but the latter is affordable and allows you to spend a minimum of 1 dollar per day.
- Add a blog to your portfolio website and do keyword research to write articles that will rank on search engines and bring organic traffic to your blog.
- Reach out to potential clients through phone calls, emails, DMs, etc.
How much do freelancers make in Nigeria?
Freelancers in Nigeria can make between N50,000 to N1,000,000 every month depending on the kind of jobs or services they are offering, plus how long they have been in the freelancing business to amass lots of clients.
Personally, there are months I make less than N50,000 across all my freelancing jobs, and there are other months I make more than N500,000 though I haven’t hit a million mark per month yet.
How do Nigerian freelancers get paid?
Freelancers in Nigeria can receive their payments through Bank or wire transfers into their Naira or domiciliary accounts. They can also get paid through bitcoins, using Payoneer, an active PayPal account, etc.
Which freelancing site is best for beginners in Nigeria?
The best freelancing site for beginners in Nigeria is fiverr.com because it will allow you to create a gig about your kind of job and indicate how much you are charging so that when people find it they can contact you directly and request you to do the job for them.
Fiverr will also allow your clients to pay money for a job into their escrow where you can cash out once you are able to deliver the job to the client.
Other freelancing sites you can use in Nigeria include:
- Upwork: One thing I like about Upwork is that they give clients an opportunity to post a job so that freelancers can utilize several strategies to bid for it. Once the client is able to select a preferred freelancer, he will pay money into upwork escrow where the freelancer can cash out once he is able to deliver the job. Upwork is estimated to have 5 million clients and 12 million freelancers.
- Freelancer: To use Freelancer requires a membership fee, but while starting up they will allow you to use free limited applications.
- 99designs: As the name implies, this freelancing site is mainly for designers which includes web designers, graphics designers, and logo designers. The best part of 99designs is that they will link you up with high-paying clients if you are able to honestly deliver more services.
- BloggingPro: As the name also implies, BloggingPro is a freelancing site mainly for bloggers. When you join them you will be able to create blogs for clients, write content for bloggers for a fee, post content on social media for blogs, etc.
- Guru: Guru is estimated to have about 3 million members and still counting. To use this freelancing site, you are required to create a profile where you can show off your working experience to get jobs that are posted from time to time. Please note that they are going to charge you 9% for every job they help you to get.