Home Business Ideas 15 Profitable Passive Income Ideas To Make Money in Nigeria

15 Profitable Passive Income Ideas To Make Money in Nigeria

Passive income ideas to earn residual income

Secure the bag! Here are 15 passive income ideas to make money 24/7 in Nigeria even if you are a civil servant.

How would you feel, if you can make money every single minute of the day, even if you’re sleeping?

Like waking to the sweet sound of credit alerts for the rest of your life?

Do you know that almost all the wealthy people you can think of have a money-making machine that prints cash for them whether they are there or not?

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This money-making machine is called Passive Income. It is money in the bank 24/7.

You often hear: rich people don’t work for money; money works for the rich.

rich people don’t work for money; money works for the rich.

That’s true and it’s because they have created processes and systems that enable them to earn money even if they are not actively working.

Ok, enough of the rich and their ways. Let’s talk about you – yes, you the reader.

  • Do you have a money-making machine?
  • Is your income active or passive?
  • Do you have to toil, show up at work every single day before you earn an income?
  • What would happen if you were to fall sick right now or lose your job? Would you still be able to maintain your lifestyle?

Now, that’s a lot of questions, which would understandably make you depressed if you haven’t set your finances in order.

However, the aim is not to agitate you but to give you the kick in the butt to do something about your income.

Thankfully, you will learn about easy-to-start business opportunities that would enable you to start earning passive income even if you’re a civil servant.

The best part is, most of the passive income ideas listed here are suitable for individuals who don’t want the hassles and stress that comes with starting a business from the ground up.

But, before we dive into the list, let’s first look at the basics:

What is Active Income?

Active income is the money you earn as a result of your direct efforts. It is the most popular way people make their money.

So, think of it like this, active income is any money you earn because you did something.

Examples of active income:

The income you earn from completing a client’s project.

  • Your salary at the end of the month
  • Income from freelancing
  • Your coaching or consulting rate

What is Passive Income?

Passive income is the money you earn from assets. You don’t have to work before you earn passive income. It is the revenue you earn without your active participation.

Here’s where you want to be – making passive money from your assets.

Think of it like this, you have income-producing assets, say some real estate that pays you rents, some stocks that pay out dividends, or even a business that generates profits.

Examples of Passive Income:
  • Self-sustaining profitable business
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Productizing your expertise
  • Rents from real estate
  • Royalties from your book or other intellectual properties

Note that before you can start earning passive income usually you would have invested a ton of time and resources to build the assets beforehand.

“If you don’t find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die.”

Warren Buffet

Passive Income Ideas to Make Money in Nigeria 24/7, Even If You’re a Civil Servant.

passive income ideas to make money in Nigeria
Photo by Alexander Mils from Pexels

It is worth repeating that before you can start earning significant residual income from your assets, you would have put in a lot of work upfront.

Passive income-generating assets don’t just happen. You nurture them over time.

That said, if you’re ready to put in the initial work required to grow a residual source of income, here are proven passive income ideas to take advantage of today.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing when done right is one way you can earn passive income for life.

The best part is, you can do affiliate marketing either online or offline.

Here’s an excellent example of affiliate marketing in play. Ever been to the computer village before in Ikeja or visited Balogun market on the Island?

Remember those guys that would stand on the street and ask you to come and buy from them?

Usually, if you pay a little attention you will notice they don’t actually own the shops they take you to.

What happens is, the get a cut [commission] when you purchase anything from the store.

In a nutshell, affiliate marketing involves selling other people’s products and getting a pre-agreed commission for your troubles.

Here are some points to keep in mind:

  • You don’t need to own any product or services
  • You should know how to sell either online or offline.
  • You should have a system to draw in leads (buyers)
  • Only promote products you trust – it’s even better if you have used it.

Since our goal is to generate residual income from affiliate marketing, you will now focus on creating a system or automating the process, so that whether you are there or not it will be making you money.

Thankfully, there are several value-packed resources to help you get started. Heres an excellent free resource from Neil Patel to cut your teeth.

Then, once you’re ready for a more advanced strategy, check out this paid course from Udemy.

Turn Your Expertise into a Product

Turn your knowledge into a product and sell for passive income – that’s the simple idea behind this one.

However, you must be certain the particular knowledge you want to turn into a product has a ready market.

You don’t want to spend those long hours creating the product only to find out nobody wants to buy what you are selling.

So, before doing anything else, do the following:

Conduct market research. Your goal is to:

  • Identify who your customers are.
  • Where do they hang out – you will need this information when marketing.
  • How much are they willing to pay – the data will guide you to set a reasonable price for the products.
  • How urgently do they need your solution?
  • How do they prefer to consume the product – as video content, book, software, or as a digital or physical product?

Answers to these questions will inform the format the new product will take, your marketing strategy and the tools you will need to create the product.

Tools to create an ebook:
  • Word processor – MS Word or Google Doc.
  • Book cover design – Canva, Photoshop, or hire a designer from Fiverr
Tools to create a video course:
  • Microphone
  • Video recorder – Your smartphone or a digital camera
  • Video editor – OpenShot or LightWorks
  • Screen recorder – I use screen-O-Matic
  • Course hosting platforms – depending on the niche (Alison, Teachable, Udemy, YouTube)

Syndicate your products on several online marketplaces such as Amazon and on Video hosting platforms, and leave the rest for those websites to market your products.

Block out a chunk of time in your schedule to handle customer queries or hire a virtual assistant to do it for you.

Invest in Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT)

REIT is suitable as a long-term source of residual income, especially if you are interested in taking a bite of the real estate pie, but don’t have substantial capital to invest.

Think of it as a sort of mutual fund, but in this case, the fund is solely dedicated to investing in real estate assets only.

Before investing in a REIT, you may want to first research the available funds, you may also want to decide whether you’re going to invest in traded funds or not.

Of course, each type of REIT fund has its advantages and disadvantages. Here’s a detailed resource to learn more about the pros and cons of investing in traded and non-traded REIT funds.

How to invest in REIT

Once you decide on your REIT investment strategy, the next thing is to contact your broker to help you buy shares on the stock exchange of the traded fund.

For non-traded REIT, you will need to research and get in touch with brokers that participate in the non-traded REIT funds.

Here’s a couple of the publicly-traded REITs in Nigeria:
  • Union Homes REIT
  • UPDC Funds
  • Skye Shelter

Invest in Crowd Funded Agritech Farms

Agriculture is one investment vehicle that is sure to return a high ROI no doubt. But, the challenge is, investing in agriculture is labour-intensive.

And, as it is, you don’t have the time to start farming. Plus, our goal is to generate passive income.

Here’s where agri-tech companies come in. These platforms have made it incredibly easy to invest in farms, without physically farming.

How these crowdfunded farms work:

  • Visit their websites and create a profile.
  • Browse through their selection of farms
  • Identify which ones you want to invest in.
  • Buy.

It’s that simple. Think of it like shopping online, but in this case, you’re investing in a farm unit.

Here’s what is happening:

Agri-tech websites are connecting real, local farmers with investors. The farmer needs capital to fund their farming operations.

Investors are searching for profitable ventures to channel their funds. While the agri-tech companies provide secure and trusted platforms for the transaction.

How you make money:

Usually, each farm unit you sponsor has a minimum amount you can pay. You will see, how long it is going to take for the investment to mature and the yield.

So, after a farming cycle, your initial capital is returned to you. You are also going to receive a share of the profit.

For example, if you bought 2 units of poultry for 50 thousand naira each. Your total investment is 100k. Let’s also say, the farming cycle is 6 months with a 14% returns.

At the end of 6 months, you will be paid 100k which is your capital, plus 14% of your investment which in our example will be 14, 000.

Examples of agri-tech websites to invest




Self-Publish on Kindle

Publishing a book is a great way to earn passive income. When done right, you can earn royalties from your book sell for life.

However, for most people, the challenge is finding a publisher that’s willing to publish and market their work.

With Amazon Kindle, you don’t need any publisher to get your works in the hands of readers. And, the best part is, the heavy-lifting is already done for you.

Basically, what you are doing is leveraging established, proven system to market your ebook.

Simply create your account on Amazon, upload your book and follow the prompts to fill in details about your book.

Once you’ve filled in everything, hit the publish button and that’s it.

  • Here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to self-publish on Amazon Kindle.

Your book is now live and Amazon will take it up from there. They will promote your ebook to their audience and handle the backend stuff.

Though, in the beginning, you may want to promote your book on your end in addition to whatever Amazon will be doing.

Dividend Investing

OK, this one is probably for financially savvy people with a knack for trading the stock market.

Can an average person with no technical knowledge about investing earn from this? Probably yes, though you will have to put in great effort to learn everything there is about dividend investing.

Just as with every other passive income ideas on this list, you will need to put in a substantial amount of efforts upfront to learn and invest before you can begin to earn a snugly nice amount to live off yearly.

Start your dividend investing journey with this article.

Start Merch by Amazon

Merch by Amazon is an on-demand t-shirt printing service where designers upload designs, set color and price for their t-shirts and then Amazon does the rest.

The service is free to signup, however, it is an invitation-only service. After creating your account, you will wait for anything between three to three months to know if your application is approved.

Here’s a link form Amazon to learn more about the service.

Then follow the step by step guide here to learn how to create your first t-shirt.

Invest in Crowd Funded Startups

Remember Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Gofundme? These platforms enable users to invest tiny amounts in startups.

Now, there are platforms that pull funds from users and pay them an interest plus their initial capital after a specified period.

In Nigeria, there’s Piggyvest, an app that makes it easy to save money. However, the software also has a feature that enables users inv instead of just leaving their cash lying idle.

There are several startups you can choose from including a ride-hailing tech startup, buying farm units from farmers, investing in real estate amongst others.

Certificate of Deposit

Certificate of deposit (CD) is a time-restricted deposit you make to a bank or an organization where you deposit your money for a given period of time and at full term end you are paid both the initial capital and interest.

Unlike your savings account, you get better interest rates when you invest in a CD.

A CD has set maturity date and fixed interest rate, and often you’re penalized if you cash out before the due date.

However, if you need cash urgently, you can trade or transfer the CD to another person.

Read more about Certificate of deposit here.

How to invest in certificate of deposit in Nigeria

In Nigeria, almost all the banks offer one form of CD or the other. Simply walk into your bank and talk to them about investing in CDs.

Alternatively, you can visit your bank’s website to learn more about how to invest in a certificate of deposit.

Run Display Ads on Your Website

If you own a website, one way to monetize it is to display third-party ads. However, to earn a decent income from ads, your site’s traffic will have to be sizable.

Revenue from ads on your website is a classic example of passive income as you only had to do the work once and potentially earn from the efforts for as long as your website is up.

Integrating Google AdSense or native ads on your website are two possible ways to monetize your website.

Start a Photo Licensing Your Images

Do you have a library of digital images you don’t know what to do with them? Or maybe, you love snapping photos?

You can earn a snugly nice income from licensing your images without doing any extra work except perhaps to create your profile on photo licensing platforms.

To start, however, you will need to research stock photography websites, read up on how the site licenses images to their users, then make an informed decision whether you’d like to proceed with them.

After you create an account on any of the stock photo sites and upload your images. The site will then promote your work to its users. Once a sale is made, you are paid a royalty.

The cool thing is, one image can sell over and over again, and you’d get paid every single time.

Examples of stock photography websites

  • Gettyimages
  • 123rfimages
  • Shutterstock
  • Freepik

Sub Contracting Services

The idea here is pretty straightforward, get someone else to do the work while you get a cut of the pay.

Let’s say, for example, you’re a web developer and your clients usually ask if you can handle the content creation for their websites.

You can take up the new service, however, instead of writing the content yourself, you hire a writer who would deliver the work while you focus on your strengths.

By doing this, you have unlocked an extra source of income without doing any additional work.

To succeed, however, you will need to have a reliable subcontractor or freelancer to work with.

Fiverr is a great website to hire freelancers. Before you contact anyone on the website, read other people’s review to see if they are a good fit.

Licensing a Product Idea

If you have a great product idea you believe will take the market by storm, but, you don’t have the means to make it happen, product licensing might be exactly what you need to cashout of the idea.

Sure enough, when you license a product you give up control to your partner. But, you take advantage of the established business connections the partner brings to manufacture, market and bring the finished product to market.

Plus, by licensing your idea you avoid the challenges most startups face. Be sure though, you understand the licensing law in your country and your idea protected before showing it to third parties.

Register with Uber/Taxify

Join ride-hailing platforms like Uber and Taxify but in this case, instead of driving the car yourself, hire someone else.

Reach an agreement with the driver on how much they’d remit every week to you.

Turn Your Car Into a Mobile Billboard

turn your car into mobile billboard- passive income idea
Image source: Adssavvy.org

Or, you can turn your car into a mobile billboard. If you don’t mind driving around in a car with brand messages then this might be something you may want to consider.

A good example of mobile billboards are the Blue BRT buses in Lagos that are usually plastered with messages from brands.

Wrapping up

So, there you have it, though this list is not exhaustive of all the passive income ideas, it is sure a good place to start.

You can choose to start with one or a combination of each of the passive income ideas here. But, it all comes down to how much you want to earn, how much time you have, and the amount of time you’re willing to put in.


  • Sam Steve

    Sam Steve is a strategic content marketer and founder of Emira Digital Publishing. He helps clients grow their online presence by writing primarily about digital marketing, SME growth hacking strategies, and productivity. Connect with Sam on social media:

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