Start Your Own Business in Kent

If you are starting a business in Kent, you have come to the right place!

Start Your Own Business in Kent contains masses of free resources and the useful information that will help you get your new venture off the ground. It also highlights local organisations who offer friendly business advice and services that you need.

Everything that you will find on the site is free or very low cost and includes our free start-up pack, a series of factsheets which cover all of the key considerations, relevant templates, links to other useful resources across the world and our own series of Start Your Own Business books.

Kent Locations Covered

Ashford Borough  |  Ashford  |  Aylesford  |  Beckenham  |  Belvedere  |  Birchington  |  Broadstairs  |  Canterbury  |  Canterbury City Council  |  Chatham  |  Cranbrook  |  Dartford  |  Dartford Borough  |  Deal  |  Dover  |  Dover District Council  |  Edenbridge  |  Faversham  |  Folkestone  |  Gillingham  |  Gravesend  |  Gravesham Borough  |  Greenhithe  |  Herne Bay  |  Hythe  |  Kent  |  Keston  |  Longfield  |  Maidstone  |  Maidstone Borough  |  Margate  |  Medway  |  Medway  |  New Romney  |  Queenborough  |  Ramsgate  |  Rochester  |  Romney Marsh  |  Sandwich  |  Sevenoaks  |  Sevenoaks District  |  Sheerness  |  Shepway  |  Sittingbourne  |  Snodland  |  Swale Borough  |  Swanley  |  Swanscombe  |  Tenterden  |  Thanet District  |  Tonbridge  |  Tonbridge And Malling Borough  |  Tunbridge Wells  |  Tunbridge Wells Borough  |  Welling  |  West Malling  |  Westerham  |  Westgate-On-Sea  |  Whitstable  | 

Free Local Resources

Local resources and contacts sorted by classification

Here you will find a collection of FREE resources defined by topic as well as the contact details for many local businesses and organisations who are keen to help you.

Accountancy & Tax | Bookkeeping | Business Advice | Business Funding | Business Grants | Business Networking | Business Opportunities | Commercial Law | Communications | Design & Branding | Education & Training | HR & Staff | Insurance | I.T. | Marketing | Mentoring | Office Services | Online Marketing | Photography | Print | Property & Working from Home | Web Design

FREE Book

Start Your Own Business In 2018
Start Your Own Business In 2018

This free 150 page book is packed with start-up information and contact details designed to help you start your business successfully.

We have been running SYOB for over 10 years now and have accumulated an enormous amount of information which could make the difference between start-up success or failure.

Starting a business is easy but keeping it going and making a profit is a completely different proposition. The good news is that there are tried and tested 'rules' which have consistently proved to work.

As the old addage says 'you don't know what you don't know'!

Download Now

FREE Start-Up Pack

Our FREE start-up pack contains everything that you need to get you started.

It is a common trait amongst entrepreneurs to just want to 'get on with it'. However, if you want to maximise your chances of success, it is worth putting in time and effort before you start to ensure that you have set-up correctly.


  1. Start-up checklist
  2. Step-by-step guide
  3. Business plan template
  4. Personal budget planner
  5. Cashflow forecast template
  6. Marketing plan template
  7. Guide to business networking
  8. Start-up map
  9. Web & SEO Checklist
  10. Start-up map

Download Pack


One-time registration required but this unlocks
all of the free resources on the site.

StartUp Latest

Keep up to date with the most recent business thinking from around the world

We try to keep our eyes open for useful and interesting news stories and useful resources which could help if you are starting up or running a small business. Hopefully, this will save you the time and trouble! The latest additions are...

Common Start-Up Mistakes... and how to avoid them

Trade Mark Co-existence - what is it and will it work?

Bookkeeping tips for start-ups and self employed

Free Business Toolkit

FSB - 10 Top Tips for Amazing Networking

Kent Local Contacts

Useful Start-Up Resources
If you can help new business start ups or existing small businesses in the Kent area, we would love to promote you here free of charge. (Add Your Business)

4Networking

4 great reasons to be part of 4Networking 1. Flexibility and reach 4N gives you access to a unique joined-up national business network. Our ‘Passport membership’ lets you choose from 5000+ 4Networking events each year. We have groups in most major towns and cities in the UK. Use your Passport to network locally, regionally and even nationally. Choose from Breakfast, Lunch and Evening meetings + join the UK’s fastest growing Facebook business group - just search on Facebook for ‘4Networking Community’. 2. A stream of business appointments Bypass gatekeepers by having three 10-minute 1-2-1s at every 4N meeting, with people you choose. Also use 1-2-1s to find trusted suppliers. 1-2-1s are one of the key elements in our relaxed yet productive meeting format, which is tried, tested and loved by our members. 3. Relaxed, fun and friendly networking At 4N, it’s easy to just be yourself. At our meetings and online we’ve created an unstuffy environment. The cornerstone of 4N’s ethos is Meet>Like>Know>Trust, as it’s the best way to gain customers, collaborations and suppliers. If this sounds like your kind of place, then become part of the 4N community. 4. A platform to demonstrate your expertise We give you so many ways to raise your profile and establish yourself as the go-to person in your field. In the room and online, being able to offer ‘4Sight’ presentations can gain you a massive audience. Plus of course, you and your business benefit from other 4N members’ advice and help. Established for over 11 years, 4Networking is helping thousands of business owners to grow their businesses. It’s business networking the British way. Register at www.4networking.biz (it takes 2 minutes) and then you can book your first meeting, to see how 4N will work for you. Browse our list of meetings here: www.4networking.biz/events. Or call our Support Desk team on 0345 123 4444.

Custom Marketing Resources

Marketing your business at every opportunity is crucial today, ensuring your potential clients instantly understand the benefits your business has to offer them. Creating a professional image and linking the different parts of your promotions to one another is not an option, it is vital. It is not surprising then, that one of the most essential areas for new and existing businesses to get right, is the area of creative design and marketing. Custom Marketing Resources are professional, experienced and qualified to provide design for marketing, printing and websites. Just to a look at this website and see for yourself - and see what others have said about Custom Marketing Resources too. We seem to have met a lot of people who have experienced a bad relationship with a previous website designer - or sometimes even an existing web designer who just won't follow instructions - a few who break the law by registering the domain in their own name and not in the name of the customer (the real owner by law). If you are suffering in that way please contact us - CMR are good at doing what we say we are going to do. Unique creativity comes from listening, asking questions, understanding and making experienced decisions to find the best solutions for your business. Skill and judgement are the major players when it comes to the art of image creation.

FSB - Special Start-Up Membership

The FSB Business Creation package has been specially designed for those looking to start up, or have recently started a small business. Tailored benefits will help you get your business off the ground and we’ll be with you each step of the way. Join today for £129.

Invicta Linux Ltd

Invicta Linux are the business technology specialists, providing professional IT solutions for small businesses and startups. We provide a range of professional IT services in Kent and the south East. We specialise in professional IT solutions and packages for businesses, from startup to enterprise level. The people at Invicta Linux have a long history within the IT industry and are experts in supplying premium solutions to small and medium sized businesses, including award-winning on-premise alternatives to Microsoft.

Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce

Kent Invicta Chamber is the ultimate business support network in Kent. The Chamber provides, Membership services, Business Advice, International Trade services, Representation and much more. Covering the County of Kent the Chamber is perfectly placed to promote, support and facilitate business across the Count We are the main Chamber of Commerce for Kent and the only British Chamber of Commerce affiliated chamber in Kent. We have a full range of both paid and free, local authority funded business support. Which services are free depends on which local authority you are a resident of or pay business rates in as funding varies in each Local authority. A full range of our free and paid services can be found here http://www.kentinvictachamber.co.uk/business-advice/local-business-support/

Kent Lifestyle Magazine

Kent Lifestyle Magazine is a magazine publisher based in Maidstone, Kent. We write about a variety of niche topics and offer business advertising, editorials and features for local, Kent based businesses wanting to promote their brand.

Muesli Mafia Cereal Networking

The Kent Invicta Chamber Muesli Mafia Ceral Networking provides an informal business 2 business networking breakfast in a congenial and relaxed atmosphere where local business people can get together, enjoy mutual fellowship, share their good news, views and discuss topics of mutual interest. Members are from all types of businesses. Events are held at the Ashford International Hotel, Mercure Maidstone and Mecure Tunbridge Wells.

Social Enterprise Kent

Social Enterprise Kent offers advice and support to social enterprise startups. To help you and your team develop new skills to grow your business, we also provide high-quality training in our venues in Ashford, Margate and Folkestone. Whether you're looking for courses to be compliant with the legislation and regulations, or management training to develop a high performing team, we have the courses every startup, and small business requires. From interactive one-day workshops, productive online training, to full-blown qualifications awarded by the Institute of Leadership and Mangement, you can build a skilled workforce. To chat about your latest social enterprise startup or training for your business, give us a call. It's the perfect opportunity to assess whether we're right for each other. How does that sound? Let's get the conversation started today on 01227 469970.

Start Up Britain

StartUp Britain is a campaign by entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs. They offer inspiration, resources and guidance to help people start and grow their own business.

Tiny Robot

Web Design, Photography & Video in one easy to swallow package. 85% of consumers are searching for local businesses online. You need to be where your clients are. Each day more of your existing and potential customers are searching on mobile devices.

Whitefish Marketing

Welcome to Whitefish Marketing! We are a specialist Digital Marketing agency based in Kent, servicing clients throughout UK and abroad. Our core services focus on helping clients to grow traffic to their website, improve sales leads that come in, and to increase brand loyalty and retention of their existing customer base for future repeat business. We call this our ACQUISITION, CONVERSION, and RETENTION services. With our experienced team of digital marketing professionals, we know we can enhance your online visibility to increase your bottom line figures. Our marketing promise is – “we won’t accept your business unless we are 100% confident we will add value to your company”. Offering you specialist services such as: - Professional Web Design and Development - SEO (search engine optimisation) - PPC (Whitefish Marketing are an official Google PPC Partner) - Social Media Marketing - Email Marketing - Content marketing and blog writing - Digital Public Relations - and much more... We are there to provide business with a compete Multi-Channel-Marketing campaign bespoke to your needs and budget. The choice and flexibility is yours. We work remotely from our offices in Kent, but will gladly arrange face-to-face meetings as required. Our friendly and professional team will always be on hand to help Call us today for a frank and no obligation discussion to see how Whitefish Marketing can measurably help your business grow 01303 720 288.

Ashford Borough Council
Thinking of Starting a Business? There are many things to think about when starting a new business, but there are many resources in Ashford to help you begin successfully.

Ask a Kent Librarian
If you need help with research or a library service, our librarians are here to answer your questions. You can chat with a librarian in real time or send us your question and wait for the answer. It's a bit like going into a library and asking a question in person, but can be done from your computer or mobile device. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but Kent librarians are only available Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm and Saturday 9am to 5pm (excluding public holidays).

Ask Phil
Kent & Medway Growth Hub offer free advice, information and guidance that will help you to start, grow or improve your business. To get things started you can either fill in a Call Back request using a form on thee page or use the "Ask Phil" Live Chat facility. Or you can call us using the phone number above.

Cassidys Chartered Accountants
Most people starting up in business do so because they have a good business proposition and the enterprise and commitment to see it through. However, they may not be experts in the legal and financial aspects of running a business and such matters often appear daunting. Fortunately you do not need to be an expert in these fields to succeed in business but you do need the support of a team of trained experts. We can help. Just bring us your business ideas and we will help you to make them a reality!

FSB Kent & Medway
FSB Kent & Medway is the local branch of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). It was formed in 1974 as the National Federation of Self Employed and represents the interests of small and medium-sized businesses locally and nationally. They offer a great package tailored to your needs if you are thinking about starting a business in the area. Contact: Alison Parmar Development Manager Alison.Parmar@fsb.org.uk Contact via website or e-mail.

Kent Adult Education
Have you ever considered taking a course in Business Management? From Social Media for your Small Business and Applying for Loans to Strategies for Small Businesses, whether you’re starting from the beginning or need an accredited qualification, we’ve got it covered. Improve your employability and business knowledge with a Business course from Kent Adult Education. From learning the ins-and-outs of Microsoft Office and Bookkeeping to Search Engine Optimisation and Website Development, we have the Business courses to help you achieve your goals. All of our business courses are run by tutors with extensive industry experience who will be able to help you get the most from your learning, and take away a valuable skill which will benefit you and your business.

Kent Business Advisers
We have proudly helped businesses in Kent achieve their goals and aspirations since 2005. We can provide you with the support and guidance to grow and improve your business.

Kent County Council - Grow Your Business
A useful section on the Kent CC website. It contains dedicated pages for: Business loans and grants; Doing business with KCC; The opportunity to sign up for email updates; 'Ask Phil business advice'; Start a business; How to deliver services on their behalf; Business awards and events; Chambers of Commerce; Grow your business abroad; and information about the Kent and Medway Growth Hub.

Kent County Council - Start a Business
This page on the kent county Council website lists some useful places to find information on how to get started.

Kent Investors Network
Arguably the biggest challenge in leaving your secure well-paid job behind and starting out on your own is funding. You have rent to pay, food to eat and a business to launch! Unfortunately, unless you’re already well off, you will need to go through a difficult phase of not earning and needing to spend money on material, coders, marketing and more. This first phase is the ‘bootstrapping’ phase. You cannot raise money on an idea or a business plan. You need a lot more. If you are seeking investment, Kent Investors Network welcomes you to get in touch. We’re also growing our investor base so if you are interested please contact christina@inen.global.

Kent Invicta Chamber - Starting a Business
The Chamber Business Support team provides an extensive range of services for people starting or running a business. If you are unsure which event is right for you call us on 01233 503838 or visit our Business Advice page at: http://www.kentinvictachamber.co.uk/business-advice/

Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce
Kent Invicta Chamber is the ultimate business support network in Kent. The Chamber provides, Membership services, Business Advice, International Trade services, Representation and much more. Covering the County of Kent the Chamber is perfectly placed to promote, support and facilitate business across the County. Address: Waterbrook Avenue, Sevington, Ashford, TN24 0LH, 01010 01233 503838

Kent Live
Kent Live covers breaking news, features, What’s On, events and sport for readers across all areas of Kent and parts of east Sussex. It has regularly attracted more than four million page views per month since its launch in 2016. Part of the Reach PLC group, our newspapers are the award winning Kent and Sussex Courier, Sevenoaks Chronicle, Isle of Thanet Gazette, Dover Express and the Folkestone Herald.

Kent Space
Kent Space offer flexible, secure, business self storage solutions. Competitively priced with flexible terms, it’s no great surprise we’re one of the most frequently chosen business self storage providers in the Kent region. With access to your secure storage area 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, you can be assured your goods are stored in safe hands. With Storage Units in both Ashford and Chatham, Kent, we cater for both short term and long term business storage requirements.

Locate in Kent
Locate in Kent provide free support for businesses to locate and grow in Kent.

South East Business Innovation & Growth
South East Business Innovation and Growth provides focused support which is designed to have a tangible and positive impact on companies in the South East of England which have the potential to innovate and grow significantly. Kent & Medway. Contact Paul Walsh. 34 Tower View Kings Hill, West Malling Kent, ME19 4UY 01732 878 074

South East LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership)
The South East LEP is a partnership of leaders - from the business community and from local authorities with their democratic mandates - and will perform a leadership role. This leadership role means acting as strong advocates for the area - working with Government to find solutions to enable delivery of strategic transport infrastructure that will drive national prosperity and economic growth. SELEP will be a strong voice on behalf of businesses and communities and work to ensure that Government and the European Union realise the national and international importance of the South East LEP area in the allocation of scare resources. Advocacy will be supported by project specific economic intelligence which will provide the evidence base for investment. 01245 431469

Supply My Business
Supply my Business is a community of small businesses in Kent that want to do more business locally. We are the one place where you can find all the quality local suppliers you require for your everyday business needs and at the same time supply your goods and services to help meet the needs of local businesses just like yours.

The National Centre for Micro Business
Through the NCMB you have access to practical workshops to get you in a position to better help yourself. Understand what is an entrepreneur, what it means to be your own boss – The NewMe™ and put a plan into action. Through the NCMB you have access to learning, teaching, training programmes together with practical workshops to get you in a position to help yourself.

Visit Kent
Visit Kent offers free on-site business advice as well as a range of customer care courses and training workshops.

ZeinMarketing
Zein is a marketing consultancy based in Smeeth, Kent. We provide businesses with a broad range of affordable and personalised marketing services that include Strategic Planning, Social Media strategy and delivery, Marketing Health Check and Marketing Support. We can call upon a wealth of local talent to deliver a creative and comprehensive service that can be tailored to virtually any budget. 01303 812339


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