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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Profitable SME businesses you can start in Lagos Nigeria (Sale of Automobiles, parts and accessories)

By Onwueme Paul

Part I: Car Accessories

In this part, we shall be examining the option of selling Car accessories in Lagos Nigeria.


Car accessories are the additional aids to your cars which serve to improve navigational and directional performance of your car. They could also refer to decorative additions made to improve your car’s appearance and they include; seat covers, steering wheel jackets, foot mat, side mirrors, rear view mirrors, wind screens, caution sign, car spray, air freshener, rims, car seats, car alarm systems, seat belts, car horns, wipers, bumpers, doors and a host of others.

Opportunities in Reselling Car Accessories in Lagos Nigeria

One of the accompanying features of brand new cars is their accessories, however most second hand cars in Nigeria do not have the complete set of accessories since many of them would have been damaged, stolen or just gone missing. People’s cars will always be hit or damaged by other reckless motorists, side mirrors, car stereos even a caution sign can go missing. Since road and vehicle maintenance agencies exist to ensure compliance with traffic and road safety laws especially the VIO, Police and FRSC, there will always be demand for the products.

Market Size

The demand for car accessories is quite high because most cars in use are never bought brand new or tear rubber if you like. Hence there is an ever increasing market for accessories as long as people buy second hand cars and these cars have incomplete accessories that accompany them. At least Lagos has more than 1 million cars plying its different roads.

Who buys car accessories and why?

1. Car dealers who wish to enhance the appearance of your second hand cars for sale. Imagine trying to sell a car with a torn seat cover or no one at all. Car dealers can relate with this because their chances or making any sales will not be improved especially when there is competition to consider. Most car dealers still need to purchase one accessory or the other to enhance the appearance of their cars and hence ‘increase’ the market value of the cars in the eyes of their prospects.

2. Motorists who wish to give their cars a facelift. Some people ride old cars that need a serious make over. Others have been involved in road accidents and need to change may be a side mirror, a rear light or perhaps the car needs new paints.

3. Motorists who love trendy items. Some motorists are fashionable people who desire to own attractive and in vogue accessories. Being one step ahead of competition in terms of knowing what new but highly in demand product to buy, where and when will ensure that these motorists are cared for.

How to succeed in the business

In order to succeed in this business, you will need to carryout a well thought out plan on how to start, run and grow the business. Considering that the market is large, a very good marketing strategy will put one miles ahead of the competition.

Knowing where and how to sell car accessories in Lagos Nigeria

One good way to go about this is to sell through car related channels. For instance a lot of busy car owners and users are too busy to have the time source for dealers hence you take the business to them by selling through car parks where their vehicles will naturally be packed.

Marketing your accessories will be made easier if you can sell through the following channels;

  • Car Parks
  • Garages
  • Filling Stations
  • Traffic jams
  • Auto repair workshops
  • Car dealership lots especially dealers in second hand cars
  • Car wash centers
  • Busy Shopping Malls
  • Along Major Market roads and streets
  • Close to driving schools

Remember to use the power of networking and work on effective service delivery as many of your customers will be referrals, although you could also have others who will simply locate you because of your marketing efforts. These channels will work well if you sell indirectly as I have discussed in this post finding money spinning ideas in Lagos Nigeria II.

Finally ensure that you carry out a proper market survey in order to choose the most profitable product line. You could specialize in selling only foot mats or you could sell car air fresheners if you are sure of your marketing skills and the level of demand.