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Odunayo Ogunwuyi: 4 Reasons Why Nigerians Hesitate to Patronize Local Brands



It is no news that a Nigerian would rather pick an item with an ‘overseas’ label than pick one with a Nigerian label attached to it. Be it clothing, accessories, electronics, etc. Recently, there have been campaigns and serious ‘online cajoling’ by the government and concerned Nigerians urging people to patronize locally made goods; but still, most people would still rather buy foreign goods.
Here are a few reasons why:

This has to be the number one reason any Nigerian would give as to why they would rather buy a shoe from the UK than buy a shoe that was made in Nigeria Quality is the major setback for Nigerians. No one would prefer to buy a shoe that would wear off in 3 months, when they can buy one that would last for as long as 3 years – regardless of the price. A lot of Nigerian manufacturers pay little or no attention to the quality of their production, chasing away potential customers to purchase the foreign made products.

The rate at which Nigerian producers hike their prices is absolutely ridiculous. In the guise of wanting to make a very high profit margin fast, they add ridiculous amount of money to their products discouraging people from patronizing them. This applies most especially when the potential customers know they can get the same service or product at a relatively cheaper rate from a foreign vendor whose quality is probably even better.

Zero Customer Service
Imagine patronizing a vendor and the vendor barely returns your text messages or calls, speaks rudely to you, et cetera. This is the trend in the Nigerian production market. Customer service is extremely poor. No one wants to be in the situation where you’re begging the person you’re buying something from to collect your own money from you. So of course, people would shy away from patronizing Nigerian sellers.

Inferiority Complex
As much as we would like to disagree, there is the strange and uncalled for mentality that anyone who wears anything made in Nigeria probably can’t afford to buy foreign made. To Nigerians, wearing a Gucci shoe puts you in a higher class than someone that is wearing a shoe from a Nigerian brand. This would definitely make more people go to the farthest lengths to shop foreign goods and not Nigerian made so they are not looked down on by people in the society.

Truth be told, patronizing Nigerian made brands has its cons, same as patronizing foreign brands, but as Nigerians we need to support one another, in as many ways as we possible can. If these Nigerian brands are lacking in any of the ways listed above or more, we should try to inform them and help them be better, not just for themselves but for the country as a whole. Buying made in Nigeria really helps to improve the economy. It boosts the country’s revenue generation, helps small scale industries and reduces unemployment. There’s a lot of amazing made in Nigeria products in the market today.

Let’s all come together to #BuyNigeriantogrowtheNaira.

Photo Credit: © Kadettmann |

I am a Computer science student, Freelance writer and a Jesus baby. Mostly inspired to write about life, health and beauty. Follow me on Twitter/Instagram: @Miss_Deey/Odun_xo or Email me: [email protected]. Live laugh love


  1. Okechukwu Olugu

    April 3, 2018 at 1:50 pm

    Hmmmmm. True, Keep it up Odun ??

  2. Bee

    April 3, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    For me, it’s the price o.
    The quality is better than that of most shops abroad and it’s incomparable sef.

  3. Chichi

    April 3, 2018 at 2:35 pm

    Personally I agree with all of these, however as I do live abroad I take pride in buying made in Nigeria especially when I can see the quality finish or effort at a reasonable price. Unless it’s a quality name brand most products abroad are made in China and not made to last, even if you bought it in Office or Topshop for example, at least they can afford to make their prices high because of their name and this is what Nigerian brands don’t always understand. Alot of them are trying to be mid range to luxury brands without the customer base. Lastly what a lot of naija businesses don’t understand is that by encouraging feedback, they are receiving market research for free which is something many companies pay thousands of pounds/dollars for to grow their company. Continue to take care of the customer and they will take care of you.

  4. Aare farmland

    April 3, 2018 at 4:51 pm

    Quality, price and inferiority complex are major issues. Another issue is design, businesses are less likely to reinvest in r&d to produce better designed products. I define design of an existing products as a process that increases the aesthetic, functional, economic and emotional value of the product. Take clothes, today, there is new spring/summer apparel, the year there will be tweaked or entirely newly designed summer/spring clothes. Same for electronics, Dell 4400, dell 5500 etc. The manufacturing process is designed to be modular or flexible to produce products with added inputs. A lot of our products tend to be one dimensional, Certain pen manufactured around 7up was always inferior to bic and never did improve on its manufacturing process so also the other products. It is has for our business to grow if they invest less than 1% of their profits in R&D.

  5. olorire

    April 3, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    very true

  6. Marian

    April 3, 2018 at 8:14 pm

    I was so excited to have this famous aso oke maker do my engagement aso-oke when I was getting married. My planner reached out to her and they concluded on a price but I still wanted to talk to her so she can understand what I wanted. Even though it has been 2 years, I still remember how rude she was to me on the phone and treated me like I was some kinda low class citizen not worthy of her time. My husband was with me when I called and he refused to wear anything made by the vile person I just talked to so we ended up using someone else,

    I ordered 2 rtw outfits from this designer in Lagos last year and paid in full. It took threatening to go to social media before I got the outfits more than a month after. I called her so many times and she just ignored my phone calls.

    One tailor is still owing me 10k since last year. I hate when they stop picking up your calls when it’s time for them to deliver.

    I ordered a size 8 dress and got a size 6. Very pretty ankara fabric and design. I don’t know anyone who is a size 6 so i can’t even give it away.

    I ordered 2 braided wigs to be mailed to me since last year. No money and and no wig. According to The tracking number she gave me , it was delivered successfully to someone in Dublin and I live in the US.

    Saw this sleeveless dress and asked the designer if it can be made with sleeves and she said yes. I paid in full, delivery was on time but the dress I got was sleeveless. Na only sorry I receive.

    I decided to try africa-abroad online shopping so ordered from this African designer in UK . The dress had a size small tag on it but it was an extra large. The only dress that was a true small was made with the cheapest button ever made and came off before I even had a chance to wear it.

    I have so many more stories and always joke about starting a support group. I want to support Made in Nigeria but they make it sooooo Hard!!

    • st cathy

      April 3, 2018 at 9:07 pm

      wow! All of these bad experiences and you haven’t given up yet?

    • Odunayo Ogunwuyi

      April 3, 2018 at 10:05 pm

      Wowwww! Sis you’ve tried! They make it so damn hard tbh!

    • Mama

      April 4, 2018 at 1:18 am

      Sorry to hear of your experiences. If you still are interested in the braided wig, you can try @luchidynamics braids on instagram. I had a very good experience with her.

    • Chinenye

      April 4, 2018 at 2:31 pm

      Hi Marian, I totally understand where you are coming from, I’ve had some bad experiences myself and that was what inspired my business. Working with Feedback is so important to me and whenever I have a complaint, I remind myself that I am in business to ease stress and make shopping convenient so I can’t be a pressure point for customers.

      I have a ready to wear Ankara clothing line for women (Afrogarde) and I can’t say that 100% of the sales have been perfect but I would rather offer a refund (when the fault is mine) than have a disgruntled customer.

    • tunmi

      April 4, 2018 at 3:18 pm

      As a low class person myself…umm…low class people should still be treated with respect. Just because I’m low class does not mean you should be rude to me

    • Sherlie Holmes

      April 4, 2018 at 8:17 pm

      Gosh, I feel your pain Sis! The terrible thing about it is when you see these ppl on Instagram ehn? You go think say their products/services are laced with gold. When you deal with them, you realize pe na panda lasan.

      I would only advise that you stop paying them in full, pay for half or 75% and tell them when its complete you’ll pay the remaining balance. Seems like that’s the only way to ensure you don’t keep letting these ppl gba you.

  7. Marian

    April 3, 2018 at 8:28 pm

    Also, Nigerians need to start reviewing these vendors. I check google review before I visit any restaurant or patronize any local establishment here but these nigerian vendors will be acting like some kinda demigod with no one to put them in check.

    If their one star is out there on google or a naija version of Better Business Bureau maybe they will treat us better.

    • Weezy

      April 4, 2018 at 2:06 pm

      Most of those reviews are fake. Nigerians lie and give 5 stars saying “nice place”. I’m convinced some places ask their workers to leave a review on google. How else would you explain multiple 3 word length reviews saying “best shop for expats” and you get there only to find empty shelves. That was how i went to one supermarket in Kelli that was supposed to be best stocked, and there was nothing in the shelves.

      If the review is one of two lines with no examples supporting the rating, it is likely to be fake. The other thing I hate is when people write “you would love it”. How in the hell would you know what I will and will not love? Are you Miss Cleo? Filthy liars.

  8. rager

    April 3, 2018 at 10:16 pm

    Customer service is actually nonexistent in Nigeria. These brands need to fix up.

  9. Ayokomolafe kehinde

    April 4, 2018 at 1:16 am

    I think the price is a major concern cos when u want to buy made in Nigeria they emphasize that it is hand made as if other product that was machine made didn’t also make use of the hand
    Nigerians also like to use low quality product so as to get 3times the money they put into the work

  10. Kok

    April 4, 2018 at 2:10 am

    Odun my benefactor

  11. Oyinkansola

    April 4, 2018 at 6:34 am

    Really true,keep it up Odun

  12. Inam

    April 4, 2018 at 9:42 am

    Dunsky to the world ?❤️

  13. Olagunju Abolaji Adeola

    April 4, 2018 at 9:53 am

    So true.. customer services in Nigeria (not all though) is zero.

  14. inspired!!

    April 4, 2018 at 3:20 pm

    I agree with all but inferiority complex.

    People work hard for their money and for the average will like value for their money.

    People rather buy 3rd hand okrika than newly made Nigerian clothes.
    I personally would rather buy my GAP and NEXT and Marks and Spencers jejerly, (they last up to 6 good years)

    Look, when in Uk, and you buy UK products its guaranteed to be cheaper,, and they are smart enough to alllocate price for the quality you want, hence tags like ‘cheap but chic” or “not hundred percent baked beans etc.. now if you buy products from uk exported from outside UK it is more expensive…seafood for example….
    when in India and you buy Indian, same thing
    Yankee probably same. Maybe Trump has changed things, dunno.

    In Naija its different, the naija made thing is waaaay more expensive, the owner ‘eyes’ you one kind, and the outfit will just not last. My various traditional useless asoebis for yeye expensive weddings can bear witness…

    So dear I rather spend my money on valuable items, it has nothing to do with inferiority.

  15. inspired!!

    April 4, 2018 at 3:52 pm

    Posted before I read comments:

    Well [email protected] Chichi, please made in naija entrepreuners take her FREE ADVICE, people pay good money just to gain this knowledge…that is:

    ///what a lot of naija businesses don’t understand is that by encouraging feedback, they are receiving market research for free which is something many companies pay thousands of pounds/dollars for to grow their company. Continue to take care of the customer and they will take care of you.////

    @Marian: Also well said. So sorry about your experience. LOL, you are just like my sister, she wants to start some sort of peer review group/ support group/ or just go on a rant in youtube.. LOL.
    About your size 6 ///I ordered a size 8 dress and got a size 6. Very pretty ankara fabric and design. I don’t know anyone who is a size 6 so i can’t even give it away./// ……..still wanna give it out? ;lol. (kuff kuff, hint hint you never know until you try…) The size 6 ‘asker’ is based in UK (wink).

    Quite happy I read the comments. As per the article itself, it is fair and straight forward, however I am not happy about the ‘inferiority complex’ line though. If nothing the unusually high success of Black Panther (within and without the Marvel and DC universe) shows that there is a ready and proud market for well done (emphasis on well done) Nigerian/ African content/products/brands or Maybe the author’s point did not come across??

  16. randommer

    April 8, 2018 at 7:58 pm

    made in Nigeria goods are more expensive because of lack of scale and the business environment. I don’t mind that but the lack of quality and customer service not to mention investment in R&D is appalling.

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