Start Your Own Business in Kent

If you are thinking about starting a business in Kent or would like to grow your exisiting business, 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 give your venture the best chance of success. It also highlights local organisations who offer friendly business advice and services that you need.

Free start-up pack

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 and our free downlodable 'Start & Grow Your Business' book .

We have been helping new start-ups as well as exisiting business owners for the past 18 years and in Kent since 2005.

Accordingly, we have amassed an enormous amount of relevant useful business information which we are happy to share with you free of charge.

Friendly Advice

We hope that you find the site useful and wish you the very best of luck on your exciting journey. If you are unsure of where to start, we suggest that you get a feel for what is going on locally by having a look at the following pages:

If you offer services that could help local business owners, we would be happy to point them in your direction! Add your details (FREE!) here.

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

FREE Book

Start Your Own Business in Kent
Start Your Own Business in Kent

This free 174 page book is packed with information and contact details designed to help you start or grow 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 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

Latest Start-Up Articles

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...

How to Use Pay-Per-Click to Help Grow Your Startup

A Basic Guide to Importing

Basic Exporting Guide

Tips to Keep Your Business Healthy

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

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
http://www.4networking.biz

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.bizevents. Or call our Support Desk team on 0345 123 4444.

Custom Marketing Resources
http://www.cmr-group.co.uk/

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 take a look at this website and see for yourself - and see what others have said about Custom Marketing Resources too. 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. We offer an hour long conversation about how to set up your business andor how to market your business. One call does it all - creative design, logos, ads, artwork, printing, websites, PR, copywriting, even van liveries and carrier bags if that is what you need!

DP Web Development
http://www.dpwebdevelopment.co.uk

You’ve made the decision. You’ve decided to stop talking and start DOING. Your dreams and aspirations are about to realised. You’ve waited long enough. You are nervous (the good kind) excited, you are on the verge of something BIG. Something special. This is real. You’ll need a clean, sharp, professional website design that will adapt to the future growth of your business. You’ll want a professionally designed website that puts all of the focus on you. In short you want a sharp, witty professional presence on the World Wide Web. You’re looking for someone who “gets you”. Someone who can see the big picture (as well as all the small stuff) and understands exactly where you are coming from. Someone who can make these thoughts real, make them bigger, make them shine! You’ve been dreaming of a digital design that is cutting edge, screams success, expertise, boasting boatloads of personality and above all PROFESSIONALISM. Introducing DP Web Development. I will not only make your website look good but I’ll make it work like a dream. No sloppy coding here. I’m a one stop shop for all your web needs. Contact me today! Tel: 01732 463357 Mbl: 07939 014511 Email: dougpitchers@dpwebdevelopment.co.uk

FSB - Special Start-Up Membership
http://www.syob.net/fsb.php

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.

Insight Design
http://www.insightdesign.co.uk/

At Insight, were all about innovative ideas, great service and happy clients. Whether it’s graphic design, photography, or a new website, our aim is to work with you to ensure you get the results you need. Logo & identity Branding Brochures Newsletters Flyers & leaflets Posters Stationery Adverts Signage Websites SEO Google analytics Integrated social media Corporate imagery Product & lifestyle photography Staff portraits

Invicta Linux Ltd
http://www.invictalinux.co.uk

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
http://www.kentinvictachamber.co.uk/

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.ukbusiness-advicelocal-business-support

Muesli Mafia Cereal Networking
https://kentinvictachamber.lpages.co/muesli-mafia/

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
http://sektraining.org.uk

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 youre 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. Its the perfect opportunity to assess whether were right for each other. How does that sound? Lets get the conversation started today on 01227 469970.

Tiny Robot
http://tinyrobot.design

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
http://www.whitefishmarketing.co.uk

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.

Ask a Kent Librarian
http://www.kent.gov.uk/leisure-and-community/libraries/computer-and-internet-access/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. Its 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
http://www.kentandmedwaygrowthhub.org.uk/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.

Business Vision Live
http://www.businessvisionlive.com/
For more than a decade, Kent Vision LIVE has been helping businesses from across the South East to become more successful. As the South Easts premier business showcase, the event brings together over 3,000 visitors and 250 exhibitors every year, with the aim of creating new customer, supplier and partner relationships to make your business even better.

FSB Kent & Medway
http://www.fsb.org.uk/regions/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 & Medway Growth Hub
https://www.kentandmedwaygrowthhub.org.uk/
The Kent and Medway Growth Hub forms part of the South East Business Hub, the South East Local Enterprise Partnership’s overarching business support programme, which also supports local hubs in East Sussex and Essex, Southend and Thurrock. We help new and existing businesses find the most suitable type of business support available in their area.

Kent Adult Education
https://www.kentadulteducation.co.uk/shop/cid_32073/Business-Management.aspx
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
http://www.kentba.co.uk/
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
https://www.kent.gov.uk/business/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
https://www.kent.gov.uk/business/grow-your-business/starting-a-business
This page on the kent county Council website lists some useful places to find information on how to get started.

Kent County Council Business Advice Services (Trading Standards)
http://www.kent.gov.uk/business/trading-standards/trading-standards-business-advice/business-advice-services
From start-ups and small businesses to importers and manufacturers we can help you navigate complex regulations to protect your businesses and support good customer service. We offer a free telephone consultation with one of our officers to discuss your needs. During the consultation, which can last up to 30 minutes, we will identify how we can help you. Depending on your requirements this can range from free signposting to guidance and advice tailored to your business or a full package of support. Any costs will be discussed during the consultation.

Kent Excellence in Business Awards
http://keiba.co.uk/
An awards scheme staged and produced by KM Media Group and Kent County Council to recognise and reward excellence in businesses in Kent and Medway. The Kent Excellence in Business Awards have a high profile, so winning this accolade will say a lot about the quality of your organisation and the strength of your management team. These awards attract a wide range of entries from across a variety of sectors - but the winners all have one thing in common – they are truly excellent at what they do and have proved this in their entry.

Kent International Business
http://www.kentinternationalbusiness.co.uk
Kent International Business (KIB) is a Kent-wide initiative which aims to encourage Kent businesses to export and access overseas markets and to provide information, advice and support to help them do so. KIB is led by Kent County Council in partnership with various business support organisations in the county. KIB is also backed by a range of commercial organisations.

Kent International Business
http://www.kentinternationalbusiness.co.uk/
International trade can help businesses grow. There has never been a better time to consider exporting. Kent International Business (KIB) is a Kent-wide initiative which aims to encourage Kent businesses to export and access overseas markets and to provide information, advice and support to help them do so. KIB is led by Kent County Council in partnership with various business support organisations in the county. KIB is also backed by a range of commercial organisations.

Kent Investors Network
https://www.kentinvestorsnetwork.org/funding-a-start-up/
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 Investors Network
https://www.kentinvestorsnetwork.co.uk/
KIN comprises a group of experienced business people who co-invest, assist and when requested advise growing companies. Since its formation KIN has built up strong links with various institutions in Kent including Kent County Council, its enterprise investment initiatives and leading lawyers, accountants and M&A advisors in the County.

Kent Invicta Chamber - Starting a Business
https://www.kentinvictachamber.co.uk/event-types/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.ukbusiness-advice

Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce
http://www.kentinvictachamber.co.uk
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
https://www.kentlive.news/
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 Online
https://www.kentonline.co.uk/kent-business/county-news/
Kent Online includes a section which contains the latest business news across Kent. There are interesting articles as well as the opportunity to advertise or promote your events.

Locate in Kent
https://www.locateinkent.com/
Locate in Kent provide free support for businesses to locate and grow in Kent.

South East Business Innovation & Growth
http://www.innovationgrowth.co.uk
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

Supply My Business
https://supplymybusiness.co.uk/
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.

Thames Gateway Kent
http://www.tgkp.org/business-support
Local authorities and other Thames Gateway Kent partners offer a range of services to support businesses in their area. The following links provide more information.

The National Centre for Micro Business
http://www.thecentreformicrobusiness.co.uk/business-services/hbb/
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.

University of Kent Hub for Innovation & Enterprise
https://www.kent.ac.uk/enterprise/hub/startup/services.html
The University of Kents business incubation and support unit is devoted to helping start-up ventures and early stage companies to increase survival rates. The Hub for Innovation and Enterprise is a purpose-built incubation space for entrepreneurship and enterprise in Canterbury and offers a professional working environment with business support to assist new businesses.

Visit Kent
http://www.visitkentbusiness.co.uk/tourism-business-support-and-advice
Visit Kent offers free on-site business advice as well as a range of customer care courses and training workshops.

Visit Kent - Business
http://www.visitkentbusiness.co.uk/tourism-business-support-and-advice/how-to.../other-business-support
As a Kent business, there is a range of support available to help you grow your business in the way that you want to.


Add Your Business
Photo of Kent courtesy of   Start Your Own Business   under a   Creative Commons   Attribution licence.