21-year-old Nigerian is building wealth from E-commerce drop-shipping
As the unemployment rate remained unabated, a set of enterprising Nigerians are looking for other ways to earn legitimately. One of those few people is Abdul Qawiyy hammed, a 21-year-old Nigeria making millions from drop shipping. In this interview, he talks about his journey into this legitimate online business unknown to many Nigerians.
What inspired you to start drop-shipping e-commerce? Why did you start?
My journey into e-commerce was a funny one. I was 16 young and naïve but had lots of interest in money online. The interest led me to start a freelance business but got burnt in the process and learned to my losses which helped me to prepare for the next adventure.
My next adventure was freelancing. I was actively freelancing back then and trading my time for money using platforms like Fiverr, Freelancer, Guru until they had the purge and they sent most Nigerians off the platform because PayPal and other payment gateways banned Nigerians from using the platforms.
This left me devastated. I thought I wouldn’t make money online again until I saw an Ad by Jason Stone, the founder of millionaires mindset when I was surfing the net. He was on a Lamborghini in front of a penthouse wearing a black tee and shorts. His words struck me “ready to live your dream life? Free from the 9-5 hustle and travel the world?”
It filled me with adrenaline. I wanted that life where I didn’t have to take permission from any boss as I had seen the lives of my parents and people close to me. They were okay, but I craved a life beyond just managing. He presented an opportunity to teach the intricacies of e-commerce online.
I was excited about this opportunity to a point that I didn’t think twice before paying $297 for his offer after an hour-long webinar.
Pumped about my newly found business I started focusing more on it even when I gained admission to the University of Ibadan.
I would carry out product research. I came up with marketing angles and I was making slow progress with it.
Did your business affect academic performance?
Yes, it affected my performance in school. I didn’t focus much on school and ended up graduating with a 2:2.
Can you share what you were doing before you stumbled upon e-commerce?
I was a freelancer and a very good one at that. Later on I morphed into a consultant who runs a paid traffic agency where we help businesses scale to 6/7/8 figures using multichannel marketing and breakthrough direct response marketing.
E-commerce drop-shipping is unfamiliar in Nigeria. How did you learn the basics of e-commerce? How long did that take?
Yes, dropshipping really isn’t a huge deal in Nigeria at the moment because of the various problems and factors Nigerians face when they try getting into it. Amongst many are payment gateways: that is channels through which they can get paid for what products they sell online such as PayPal, Stripe,2checkoutetc
Also, to start drop-shipping as a Nigerian you should have at least $10,000 (3.6 million naira) which is so much for the average Nigerian.
Aside from that you also need information from someone who understands the process and can offer you guidelines but most YouTube videos or courses by Europeans or Americans don’t apply to the struggles of a Nigerian that needs such coaching.
Fortunately, my team and I have provided a solution to that as long as you have a minimum of $10,000 to start a successful dropshipping brand
Dropshipping isn’t tough. What it means is selling products you list on an online platform, running traffic to it to get your ideal audience to buy and having your manufacturer ship it to the customer while you get paid for the product.
So I call it Business Without Borders. It’s not restricted to any geographical location in the World. The basics of drop shipping remain the same: Product, Supplier, and Traffic.
The only thing that you constantly need to understand as it changes is how to use paid traffic to get more customers that lead to higher conversions. Learning about it is a lifetime activity.
Let’s talk about your drop shipping brands, what informed your decision to work on the brands?
Dropshipping starts with finding a product that’s profitable; from there you work to get enough customers with a lifetime value. You want to have it private labelled and put a name to the brand.
This helps you make more money and also have a loyal clientele base. The decision to have the brands scaled successfully has always been from day one so I can also capture a share of the global e-commerce pie.
My first e-commerce brand is in the outdoor niche while the second one is in the beauty niche.
To democratize the knowledge I have in drop shipping, I’ll launch a new information brand that aims to document the entire process of drop shipping to interested subscribers.
What challenges did you encounter and how did you address them?
Every business has its own challenges, and I faced lots of difficulties when I started out. It started with getting some of my Facebook ad account banned, lost some money to my partner who absconded with most of the money we made when I started. I couldn’t directly open either PayPal or stripe to receive money. Not having a well-laid blueprint that works for me as it does for my foreign counterparts in advanced countries.
Most of what I learned was through years of trial and error and I still keep learning every single day. I eventually overcame when I made certain lump sums of money and could secure the services of offshore banking corporations.
Could you give us an insight into how much you’ve earned from these brands?
I value my brands as 8 figures in dollars E-commerce brands and just one of them did $1.19 million (#431,375,000) in November 2019.
What efforts are you making to share your knowledge or inspire Nigerians on the opportunities in e-commerce/online business?
I constantly share the possibilities of succeeding using online businesses to transform your lives financially and being able to take care of your family via my social media handles both Instagram and Twitter @HQawiyy
I also started tweeting mainly in 2018 to show that Fraud isn’t the way and as long as you’re dedicated to your hustle and equipped with the right skills you can achieve feats
I’ve also used the medium to share some of my paid offers that could help grow their brands astronomically and skyrocket their conversions.