We’ve been working in the Nigerian digital marketing space, running campaigns since 2020. And in the process, we have accrued a wealth of knowledge to launch and jumpstart your SEO campaigns into the Nigerian market.
Here are some of the essential points relating to digital marketing and SEO in Nigeria. It is worth bearing in mind before you plan your strategy to infiltrate the Nigerian market.
You cannot understand the market if you don't know the people.
A fiercely rich linguistic tradition
Nigeria is a country with a rich, long, and varied history and, as with many nations, language has played a proud, key role in this history. As such, it’s perhaps no surprise to learn that Nigeria is one of the most linguistically heterogeneous nations in Africa. There are regional variations, accents, and dialects.
Luckily, for marketers who love to research English is the official language of Nigerians even though it is multilingual with diversity in ethnicity. This makes keyword research pretty easy - the phrases and keywords you should be targeting are almost primarily in English.
Although some local slang common among Nigerians including Pidgin English are used sometimes, you will find it easy to interpret the search intent.
Outreach Emails – Stay Formal and Polite
Africans are generally open, friendly, and, at times, can go as far just to make you feel comfortable!
In Nigeria, manners and formal etiquette win. And greetings tend to be polite and slightly reserved, and individuals are addressed using formal titles.
Thus creating an impact upon the tone and content of your outreach emails to website owners. Nigerians like to keep things formal and use correct terms of address while maintaining the age-long status quo the ancestors passed on.
The Nigerian smartphone market is ever-growing. Over a quarter of Nigerian citizens say they couldn’t imagine their lives without smartphones with almost 80% of the quarter aged between 17 and 35.
Unsurprisingly, the smartphone market has also been able to attract the older demographics indicating that there is a real focus on the usage of mobile phones.
This means that incorporating a mobile SEO strategy into your overall digital marketing plan for Nigerians can never be overstated.
This is because as technology advances – and the use of voice search grows among millennials and Gen Z, lots of people are going to be using their mobile devices to search online. Thus, search phrases are going to be affected; the usual shorter phrases or keywords are going to be used less frequently, as long-tail keywords, conversational key phrases will be the order of the day on major search engines.
Most people don’t type the same way they speak to you when in conversations.
For instance, While you might text a friend saying, “grab a drink after work?” if you were to ask the same question in person you’d be more likely to say, “hey, do you mind grabbing a drink after work tonight?” Here, you can see that the natural speech pattern contains more context than if you were to type or text it to someone.
Recognizing natural speech patterns is crucial to optimizing for voice search.
Google had in March 2021 announced mobile-first indexing for all websites in response to the growing demands of smartphones among users. People need information on the go and website design must incorporate mobile responsiveness and friendliness even while doing the designing or coding on a desktop computer.
Voice search is the future of search and now is the right time to begin optimizing for it.
Social Media – Crucial in Nigeria
For many citizens of Nigeria, the internet is still viewed as a means by which to stay in touch with family and friends with distance no longer a barrier.
Part of Nigeria's culture is keeping up with families to the extent people leave the cities at least once a year to reunite with their loved ones in the villages. And for parents, at times, if you're not from Africa, you will conclude that there is over-parenting in Nigeria and some other parts of Africa.
This has led to social media being so popular in Nigeria and is one of the reasons why Nigerians dominate Facebook.
So, social media marketing is an essential part of a marketing strategy that you can no longer do away with. People are always on their mobiles checking statuses, the latest post from their friends and family making it an important facet to your digital advertising strategy - if you must win in the global market.
Facebook is the most popular social media platform - and it has always been - so it makes sense to create a Facebook marketing strategy if you really want to win in the Nigerian market.
Search engines are not limited to Google or the popular Yahoo or Microsoft Bing alone, all social media platforms have their internal search engines and just as you optimize for Google, you might also consider optimizing your social media profile for better visibility.
Each of these has a different set of algorithms in which you might want to consider hiring an expert.