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Product Sourcing In Nigeria: How To Find That Product You Want.

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Obikoya Jeremiah

Do you need a product but don’t know how to get it?

We understand you must have tried sourcing this product but encountered some challenges, which is why we are writing this guide to help you throughout your product sourcing process as a business in Nigeria.

We cover common challenges we have helped Nigerian businesses with and provide a working strategy for effective product sourcing.

What is Product Sourcing?

Product sourcing refers to the steps you take to get your desired product. These include learning about the product, finding someone who can supply it, making payments, and knowing how the product will be transported to you in Nigeria.

Sourcing a product locally in Nigeria can be done effectively with the right network of people, but when it comes to sourcing products from China and other countries, there are common issues businesses face, which is why we have product sourcing agents at SARA who specialize in solving these issues.

“Want to hire a Product sourcing agent to source your products for you? Let’s know your needs, and we will get them to you.”

How to Source for Your Product Globally

We have assisted our clients in sourcing over 189+ products, and here is how we do it:

1. Conduct Product and Market Research:

To effectively source a product, you need a strong understanding of the product; knowledge, they say, is power.
market research and analysis for product sourcing
4 key things you need to know are:
  • The demand for the product,
  • The product specs,
  • Consumer preferences, and,
  • Market trends and dynamics.
All these will help you make informed business decisions, determine the best country to purchase the product from, and accurately relate your business needs to the supplier/manufacturer so they know exactly what you need, and there are no issues later in the process.

Best Practices In Product And Market Research:

  • Have a clear objective for your product research. For example, Identify and prioritize the top 3 most desired functionalities based on feasibility and potential impact on user satisfaction.
  • Utilize various data sources to gather comprehensive insights on the product and market. This includes industry reports, market surveys, customer feedback, competitor analysis, supplier evaluations, and online research tools.
  • Divide your target market into segments according to relevant criteria, such as purchase patterns, location, psychographics, and preferences.
  • Ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data collected.

2. Evaluate Available Suppliers/Manufacturers:

During your product and market research, you might have come across a few suppliers or manufacturers who can produce the product you need for your business, either here in Nigeria or outside the country. 

If you are yet to put together a list of potential suppliers/manufacturers for your product, we have a list of trusted online product sourcing platforms we make use of for our clients.

Countries You Can Source Your Product From And Their Platforms:

Product sourcing in Nigeria:
Product sourcing in CHINA:
Product sourcing in the United Kingdom: 
Product sourcing in the USA:
Product sourcing in DUBAI:
Product sourcing in TURKEY:
Take time to identify and list potential suppliers or manufacturers that produce what you need in the county of your choice, or reach out to one of our product-sourcing agents to help you out.

Are you worried about how to get the product to you here in Nigeria? We cover that later in this article.

Once you have a list of potential sources for your product, it is time to evaluate each of them to know which is a good fit for your business needs.
  • Do they have the product quality you need? Or 
  • Can they produce quality products?
  • What’s their production capacity?
  • What’s the supplier's reputation? (reviews)
  • Are they reliable?
  • How much will it cost to get the product from each of them?
These are the things you need to consider while evaluating suppliers. Contact the suppliers, communicate your business needs with them, get a quote, and compare what you get from them all.

We have a guide on questions you can ask manufacturers before going ahead and making payments. Use this to guide your conversation with them.

Best Practices in Supplier/Manufacturer Selection:

  • Clearly define your requirements, including product specifications, quality standards, quantity, delivery timelines, pricing expectations, and any other specific criteria.
  • Perform thorough due diligence on potential suppliers.
  • Evaluate the supplier's quality control processes and adherence to industry quality standards and certifications.
  • Assess the supplier's production capacity to ensure they can meet your demand requirements.
  • Build strong relationships with your chosen suppliers based on trust, transparency, and mutual understanding. This is very important.

3. Product Quality and inspection:

This step in the product sourcing process can also help you evaluate suppliers or manufacturers further.

This is the point where you request a sample of the product from a few suppliers and inspect the functionalities and quality of the product before purchasing the quantity you need to run your business.

Some suppliers may charge a discounted fee for the sample, while others may provide it for free; in either case, you would be responsible for managing the logistics. You can contact us to get help with the logistics.
woman inspecting delivered product
Once you have the product sample:
  • Ensure the quality is up to standard.
  • Compare the sample against the agreed-upon specifications and functionality.
  • If applicable, test the sample's compatibility with other products, components, or systems.
  • Evaluate the sample's packaging, including labeling and branding, if dealing with a manufacturer.
  • Check out any other thing you want in the product.
Give the supplier feedback on your findings on the product sample.

4. Negotiate With Your Chosen Suppliers:

If you are okay with the quality of the sample product from a supplier or manufacturer, then it is time to negotiate.
  • How many units of the product do you need?
  • What are the supplier’s or manufacturer’s minimum order quantities?
  • What is the production lead time?
  • How often do you need this product?
  • How much will it cost to purchase the goods?
  • What will the payment terms be?
These and more are what will guide your relationship with the supplier, so you need to negotiate with them to reach an agreement. This agreement between you both should be recorded in a contract, signed, and documented.

Best Practices In Negotiation:

  • Define clear objectives and desired outcomes for the negotiation. 
  • Cultivate a cooperative and positive connection with the supplier.
  • Gain a deep understanding of the supplier's position
  • Aim for win-win solutions that benefit both parties
  • Be flexible to alternative solutions or compromises that satisfy the needs of both your business and the supplier.
  • Maintain a firm stance on your bottom line, and be prepared to walk away if necessary.

5. Ordering and Payment:

After reaching an agreement with the supplier or manufacturer, it is time to place your order for the product and make payment.

Ensure your order contains the number of products required, specifications (such as sizes, colors, and features), packaging preferences, delivery timelines, and any additional services or requirements.

As a Nigerian, making payments to international suppliers and manufacturers can present challenges and cause disruptions to seamless business operations. To avoid this, reach out to one of our product-sourcing agents to help with the international transaction with the supplier while you pay us in Naira.
man making payment after sourcing product
Ensure you also follow the payment terms you agreed on with the suppliers to avoid issues during this step.

6. Logistics and Shipping:

Transporting your product from the supplier to your business location in Nigeria is the final step in this process, but this is vulnerable to a number of external factors, especially when it comes to importing through the country's borders.

First, you have to select the shipping method (air freight, sea freight, or road freight) and also deal with legal regulations govering the import of goods into the country.

We advised getting a procurement expert to help you with this step to quicken the process and avoid any costly violation that can negatively impact your business operation.

Leverage Sara Product Sourcing Agents For Effective Product Sourcing

Sourcing products from anywhere in the world for your local business here in Nigeria can be time and cost-effective if managed well.

This article is a walkthrough of the 6 steps we take to successfully sourcing products for businesses globally. You can follow these steps and also settle your business needs smoothly.

Do you need a product-sourcing agent to help you with product research, finding qualified suppliers, making payments in foreign currency, or importing your product to Nigeria…

SARA procurement service has got you covered; tell us more about your product.

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Obikoya Jeremiah

Jeremiah Obikoya is a dedicated content writer at SARA, where he engages in daily research and development to craft innovative solutions for the procurement challenges you encounter.


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