29 Alternative Sources of Income in Nigeria in 2020 (with High Profit)

Are you looking for ways to make some extra cash and earn a living while anchoring a fulltime or part-time job?

I get it. Sticking to one job the whole time and having a fixed income sucks.

And having other businesses generating side cash for you on the side would go a long way.

Alternative ways to make money

So I took out quality time to outline 29 of the alternative sources of income in Nigeria that you can start up.

Some of them don’t require you to have a huge capital for a start, and some on the list don’t require your presence to work well.

Interestingly, I mixed in some that don’t require a capital or your presence.

They’re simply passive.

So… Let’s cut the talk and get to work.

Unveiled! Here are 29 alternative sources of income in Nigeria you should tap into:

  • Teespring
  • Blogging
  • Freelancing
  • Writing
  • YouTube
  • Redbubble
  • FOAP
  • Referral Programmes
  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Dropshipping
  • CPA Marketing
  • 500Px
  • Udemy
  • Taking Surveys
  • Crypto Trading
  • Online Tutoring
  • Popcorn Business
  • Mini Importation Business
  • Mini Boutique Business
  • Rental Services
  • Real Property/Estate Agency
  • Palm Oil Business
  • Products Marketing
  • Tutoring
  • Stock Investment
  • Show/Concert Performance
  • Mini Shop Business
  • Event Planning
  • Wholesale Business

1. Teespring

Teesping is a print-on-demand platform that sells T-shirts with designs to users from anywhere in the world.

All you do on Teespring is to design a T-shirt and upload your design.

You have nothing to do with printing the T-shirt design, Teespring handles that.

When other users in the platform sees your design, they can order it if they like it.

And when they buy, you make money.

It’s pretty easy and you can upload as much designs as you want.

2. Blogging

I keep listing out this online business as a lucrative one basically because it is.

You can start a blog while you’re working full-time and update it when you get the chance to.

The challenge with blogging is getting as much traffic because you need a lot of it to monetize your blog.

But once you get this through consistency, promotion, and quality content creation, you’re all set to earn so much.

Click here to start your blog today and start making money on the hustle.

3. Freelancing

Without stress, you can register on freelance platforms like Upwork and Fiverr.

These platforms bring employers and freelancers together.

So if there’s something you’re good at like writing, you can earn by helping people write.

The people are employers you get in touch with through these platforms and there’s no limit to how much clients you can work for.

A lot of freelancers in Nigeria make thousands of dollars each month from freelancing.

Some of the most common tasks on these online freelance marketplaces include web designing, graphics designing, social media management, article writing, translating, transcribing, and coding.

There are more.

4. Writing

Websites pay writers a lot of money to write articles for them.

Writing for Nigerian websites, you could earn some money but not enough money like the one you’re thinking of 🙄.

The best? Write for topnotch pro blogs.

There are lists of niche blogs that pay as much as $500 per professionally written article.

You’re a Google search away from them.

5. YouTube

If you’re good at talking or creating videos, then YouTube is for you.

I suggested a prowess in talking because you could easily make tutorial videos on the things you know and frequently upload them on YouTube.

YouTube can make you a millionaire.

The challenge is getting subscribers and uploading videos that rank well.

6. Redbubble

Just like Teespring, Redbubble pays you when people buy your design.

You don’t have to print.

All you do is design something nice on a t-shirt, something great, and upload it.

Upload many.

When people start buying them, you start earning.


FOAP is a photo-trading platform. It enables you to make money from your photos.

It works pretty simple: Create beautiful photos with your phone and upload them.

Not just T-shirt designs this time, but any good photo.

People buy these photos and when they do, you earn.

8. Referral Programmes

There are a bulk of websites out there that run referral programmes.

When you bring in people through your special link they register (usually for a fee), you earn money as a kind of commission.

Most of the websites require you to register for a fee since they don’t really sell a product.

Some are news sites that also pay you to read news articles.

The more people you’re able to refer, the more money you earn as commission when your referrals sign up.

9. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is for you if you’re a good marketer and have a lot of friends on and off social media.

You don’t need to pay a dime to start, but to excel, you might have to run some paid Ads on social media.

The more people you get to purchase a product through your affiliate link, the more money you earn.

It’s that easy.

To have a pretty good idea on how this works, checkout this article on making money with affiliate marketing on Amazon.

10. Dropshipping

Dropshipping isn’t a new one.

It’s been years since this online baby arrived.

How it works is simple:

You build an online store, when people click on the ORDER button to purchase from your store, the “orders” go straight to the original supplier’s online store.

You’re a middleman but playing the role of the supplier in the buyer’s eyes.

Your customers will know nothing about the shipment.

They’ll be unaware you had no part in picking the goods or shipping it.

11. CPA Marketing

CPA marketing is an online business you should definitely try out.

The way it works is simple too.

You just have to make people do some things on a website through your affiliate link.

(Note: It’s not affiliate marketing)

You simply register, become an affiliate, invite people to the website with a special link, and if they get to take specific actions like submitting their email address, you get paid.

It’s one of the many online alternative sources of income in Nigeria just sitting there to be exploited.

12. 500Px

Like FOAP, 500Px is a platform that allows users to upload photos with specific dimensions.

You can make the photo free for people to download or make them premium for sale.

When people buy, you earn.

You only get paid when people buy your photos.

Also note that free photos are free for download. So it’s basically up to you to put a price on your photos and watermark them.

Alternative Source #13: Udemy

If you’re very brilliant which I know you are, you can create and submit a course on Udemy.

On the Udemy platform, people buy and sell online courses, and some of these courses offer certification upon completion.

So if you have a particular course written about something interesting, you can upload your course for sale on Udemy.

14. Taking Surveys

A bunch of websites are out there offering to pay you just to answer questions honestly and tell them what you think about certain products.

Most Nigerian websites are jokers so I suggest going for foreign ones that are not run by Nigerian companies.

Meanwhile, you’d need a PayPal account to earn huge on top survey sites.

15. Online Tutoring

People are in search for Knowledge, and if you give them what they want, they’ll pay you willingly.

You can make go live on your social media pages, on forums, and through paid adverts on social media and search engines like Google.

It doesn’t cost very much to do so unless you want to do that for a year.

Tell the world you’re offering a course which you could make strictly online on social media groups and chatrooms.

16. Crypto Trading

Instead of keeping your money bored in the bank, simply buy some Cryptocurrencies you’re sure will be on the rise in the nearest future.

At the time of this writing, Ethereum seems to be the Crypto jackpot.

So it’s a possibility to have more than 10 times the money you invested in Crypto before the year runs out.

17. Popcorn Business

The popcorn business is what’s usually seen as a poor man’s business in several corners of Nigerian States.

Honestly, the people doing this particular business make a lot of money from it.

You don’t have to be the one there. You can hire someone and pay him off at the end of the day, week or month.

Also, you’ll need to have an idea of how the business works so you don’t get cheated out.

18. Mini Importation Business

So this one is pretty easy.

You just need to have some time put aside to order and receive your goods from international marketplaces like AliExpress.

When you receive the goods you ordered, they’re usually delivered at a cheaper rate. You can add in your profit when you sell to other people and make money.

19. Mini Boutique Business

A mini boutique business is truly capital intensive.

With a little over N300k, you can start up a boutique business.

You don’t always have to be there.

It doesn’t require your presence. You can always get someone to run the boutique for you and settle them.

20. Rental Services

Investing some money into acquiring durable products for rentals isn’t far from the possible alternatives.

You’ll make money while you sleep knowing your materials are on lease for a fee.

Think about the things people use at ceremonies.

Which can you afford?

Follow what your heart tells you.

It doesn’t have to be a canopy or chairs.

21. Real Property Agency

This doesn’t require you have a visible huge capital.

All you need to do here is connect the dots.

Meet with property owners whose houses are vacant, tell them you can get them tenants and let them know how much cut you get as the agent.

So you can start this business by walking from street to street in the cool evenings.

Social and persuasive skills are two personal skills you’ll need to grow fast as an agent because people will step on your toes and cheat on you with prices.

Real estate agency can earn you lots of money as an alternative business.

You don’t always have to be there to process information between the real estate developer and the occupants of the estate.

22. Palm Oil Business

Without a doubt, palm oil business is very profitable in Nigeria today.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to be the one processing the oil and all that.

You can transport gallons of oil from one State to another State where it’s twice as costly in demand.

Since we’re considering this as an alternative business, you can meet with sellers in the business already, give them some palm oil gallons to transport and sell for you.

Caution: Make sure the seller you’re working with is trustworthy so he doesn’t run away with your money.

23. Products Marketing

As a product marketer, you help companies market their products to people.

The products are usually tangible (not online), and people would see and feel what they want before paying for it.

It’s very easy if you’re the persuasive type; the type who knows how to make a lawyer purchase a syringe with strength of compulsion.

24. Tutoring

You could organize home lessons with children, teenagers and grownups willing to learn more about something you truly know.

This is a great way to help yourself learn and earn by imparting your knowledge to other people.

The good thing is; you can set the time for lessons in the way that it favours you and gives you time to do some other job.

25. Stock Investment

Investing in stock is a great way to get double or simply triple the money you invested.

It’s risky.


It’s the nature of investment but if things don’t go south, you’re usually at the smiling end.

26. Show/Concert Performance

If you’re a good speaker, dancer, or a singer, let people know by words of mouth and through social media marketing.

Solicit for bookings at concerts and events at a fee.

This might not come every time and the events may not be the biggest in town but there are stepping stones to greatness in every field.

27. Mini Shop Business

People who need groceries are everywhere, and they get them everyday.

From snacks to food ingredients and easy outfits, people buy them everyday from the mini grocery stores around.

If you live in such a busy area, you can start up this business and leave someone to handle the sales (if you’re too busy).

Just be sure you have a way to account for your inventory so you don’t get lost in sales analysis at the end of every business week.

28. Event Planning

As an event planner, you have to be the social type.

People get married almost every Saturday and they organize mega birthday parties across several towns in Nigeria.

Take advantage of this and utilize the power of social media to let people know you can organize something out of the box for them regardless of the event at hand.

It’s serious money involved usually.

Most of the time, you just need the contacts of chefs, restaurants, musicians, and MCs who you’re sure won’t disappoint you in a hurry.

29. Wholesale Business

Starting an wholesale business means you buy in bulk and sell to others in bulk.

In this case you’re dealing with manufacturers directly from the company.

You don’t have to be the one doing the whole thing if you don’t want to.

Find someone you can trust, and see that the wholesale store is up and running.

29 Alternative Sources of Income in Nigeria (Wrap Up)

Having multiple streams of income is one of the ways to attain the billionaire status quo anywhere in the world.

So it’s not totally bad to focus on one business, but diversifying your streams of income serves you better in the end.

These 29 alternative sources are cool businesses.


For the online alternative business ideas, they’re mostly passive which means you earn whether or not you get off your bed.

29 Alternative Sources of Income in Nigeria (Summary)

Here is a list of the 29 alternative sources of income in Nigeria you didn’t know:

  • Teespring
  • Blogging
  • Freelancing
  • Writing
  • YouTube
  • Redbubble
  • FOAP
  • Referral Programmes
  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Dropshipping
  • CPA Marketing
  • 500Px
  • Udemy
  • Taking Surveys
  • Crypto Trading
  • Online Tutoring
  • Popcorn Business
  • Mini Importation Business
  • Mini Boutique Business
  • Rental Services
  • Real Property/Estate Agency
  • Palm Oil Business
  • Products Marketing
  • Tutoring
  • Stock Investment
  • Show/Concert Performance
  • Mini Shop Business
  • Event Planning
  • Wholesale Business

What side hustle are you currently hooked with? And what do you think about the 29 on this list?

Tell me about it in the comment section below. Also let me know what you think about the online ventures you’ve tried out and where you’re having challenges.