Do you need to form a limited liability company, but you don’t want to bother with the complexities and hassles of forming your own LLC?
There are many companies like ZenBusiness and Harvard Business Services that offer high-quality LLC formation service, but it can be tough to figure out which one is the best option for your new business.
In this ZenBusiness vs Harvard Business Services comparison guide, you’ll find all the relevant information about these two reputable service providers organized in a convenient manner. Let’s find out which one is the right choice for your LLC!
Do These LLC Websites Offer Good Value?
|🥇 ZenBusiness||Starts at $39||(4.8/5)||Excellent||Absolutely|
|Harvard Business Services||Starts at $89||(4.4/5)||Good||Sometimes|
ZenBusiness and Harvard Business Services are two of our favorite companies in the LLC services industry, and we’re quite confident in their abilities to efficiently form your compliant business entity. Each of these companies has its own advantages when compared to each other, but in general, we prefer ZenBusiness for most of our readers.
First and foremost, if you use our ZenBusiness discount, they offer LLC formation service for just $39, which is $50 cheaper than the lowest rate offered by Harvard Business Services. In addition, Harvard Business Services only offers services in Delaware, whereas ZenBusiness provides services in all 50 states.
Would you like to learn the details that set these service providers apart, as well as the common characteristics they both share? Read on as we discuss all the information you need to make a decision between these two respected companies.
7 Things They Have in Common
1) Affordable: With either ZenBusiness or Harvard Business Services, you’ll save a significant amount of money on your LLC formation compared to hiring a business attorney to handle your formation process.
2) Registered Agent Service: Both of these companies provide their LLC formation clients with free registered agent service. They’re two of just a small handful of companies in this industry that provide one full year of registered agent service with any business formation package purchase.
3) Efficiency: Whether you choose ZenBusiness or Harvard Business Services, you’re getting a service provider that’s capable of processing an LLC formation quickly. If you’re in a hurry, they both have options available that can speed up your formation.
4) Outstanding Customer Feedback: ZenBusiness and Harvard Business Services have two of the best reputations in this industry when it comes to customer reviews. They both have thousands of reviews available online, and almost all of them are positive.
5) Experience: Both Harvard Business Services and ZenBusiness have helped form thousands of businesses over the years, and they both have plenty of expertise. You can definitely trust them to have the experience they need to form your compliant LLC.
6) Additional Services: LLC formation is far from the only service offered by ZenBusiness and Harvard Business Services. They both have tons of other services available, from registered agent service to foreign qualifications and much more. They’re one-stop shops for business services.
7) Customer Support: These two services both have customer support networks that can answer your tough questions. Why go it alone when you can get help from ZenBusiness or Harvard Business Services?
Side by Side Comparisons
There’s really nothing wrong with the pricing model offered by Harvard Business Services, except for the fact that they’re competing with ZenBusiness, which offers more value per dollar than the vast majority of companies in this industry. ZenBusiness has a clear-cut advantage in this category, which is bolstered by the fact that they offer nearly the exact same LLC formation package as Harvard Business Services does.
The ZenBusiness Starter plan includes one year of registered agent service, as well as an LLC operating agreement template. Harvard Business Services also includes 12 months of registered agent service, and they also throw in lifetime access to their corporate compliance tool.
These companies are equals when it comes to the issue of included features. The year of registered agent service obviously balances out, and we think the operating agreement offered by ZenBusiness is roughly equally valuable to the compliance dashboard provided by Harvard Business Services.
It’s also worth noting once again that Harvard Business Services only forms businesses in Delaware, whereas ZenBusiness offers services in all 50 states.
ZenBusiness is a recent addition to this industry, as it was founded in 2015. Since then, they’ve served thousands of customers, and they say that their goal is to form one million LLCs and corporations by 2024. Harvard Business Services has been around since 1981, and they’ve formed nearly 250,000 business entities in that time.
Harvard Business Services offers customer service via phone, Skype, email, chat, or WhatsApp, and their hours of availability run from 9 am to 5 pm ET Monday through Thursday, and 9 am to 4 pm ET on Fridays. Their representatives are helpful, but their extremely short hours of availability leave something to be desired.
ZenBusiness offers phone, email, and chat support Monday through Friday between 9 am and 9 pm ET and on Sundays from 11 am-8 pm ET. Whenever we’ve contacted them, we’ve received prompt support and accurate responses.
Both LLC websites will show exactly how long it takes to form an LLC in your state. For an answer on how long it’ll take, visit each website and select “LLC” and your state. Harvard Business Services has some of the fastest Delaware business formations in the industry, as they even offer same-day service!
ZenBusiness takes a bit of a different approach than most competitors in this area. Instead of structuring its turnaround times according to each state’s processing speeds, ZenBusiness takes these estimates and then speeds up or slows down your formation based on how much money you spent on their platform. Obviously, customers who purchase their upper-tier packages will receive much faster LLC formations than those who opt for their cheapest option.
Both of these service providers have order tracking tools available on their websites. Simply log into your account and you’ll find your order status in your profile.
Registered Agent Service
Every LLC in America is required to designate a registered agent, which is a person or business entity that receives important document deliveries (like service of process) from your state government, informs you of the receipt, then forwards the documents to you. This is so crucial because the state needs to have a reliable means of contacting your business at any time.
ZenBusiness includes registered agent service with all of its LLC formation packages, and this service costs $99 per year if ordered separately. Harvard Business Service also bundles a year of this service into their business formation plans, and they have an incredible $50/year price point after that. This is the lowest rate we’ve ever seen, and they even guarantee that it won’t increase for the life of your business.
ZenBusiness excels when it comes to customer feedback, as they have more than 6,200 reviews available online, and nearly all of them are positive. Their clients are clearly satisfied with their services, and they frequently praise their efficiency, along with the general ease of use provided by their platform.
Harvard Business Services also has an exceptional track record in this regard. With around 3,500 reviews online, they maintain extremely high average rating scores. These are two of the top companies in this industry for customer feedback.
Ease of Use
These companies are relative equals in this category, as they both make the LLC formation process quite simple compared to forming your own business using the DIY method. This category is a tie for Harvard Business Services and ZenBusiness.
With either Harvard Business Services or ZenBusiness, you’ll have access to a wide variety of additional services that can help you grow and develop your business in a compliant fashion. They both offer many of the same services, including things like registered agent service, EIN acquisition, operating agreement templates, certificates of good standing, and more.
However, there are also some services that only one of these companies offers. For instance, you can access mail forwarding service from Harvard Business Services, which ZenBusiness doesn’t offer. On the other hand, ZenBusiness provides accounting and bookkeeping services, while Harvard Business Services does not. Of course, ZenBusiness also offers services in all 50 states, while Harvard Business Services focuses solely on Delaware.
Which Is the Best LLC Service for You?
ZenBusiness and Harvard Business Services have plenty of common characteristics that make them two of the top LLC formation services available, but they also have some major differences that set them apart. If you haven’t yet made up your mind between them, let’s finish this comparison by quickly describing some scenarios that may sway your opinion one way or the other.
Regardless of which one you ultimately choose to help form your LLC, we think you’ll be quite pleased with the service you receive from these great companies.
|🥇 ZenBusiness||Starts at $39||(4.8/5)||Excellent||Absolutely|
|Harvard Business Services||Starts at $89||(4.4/5)||Good||Sometimes|
➥ Choose ZenBusiness if You Are:
Are you seeking reasonable price points? The $39 LLC formation package offered by ZenBusiness is just about as cheap as it gets in this industry. In addition, they offer services in all 50 states, which Harvard Business Services does not.
➦ Choose Harvard Business Services if You Are:
If you’re forming a business in Delaware, they’re the obvious choice due to their incredibly fast processing speeds. Their positive customer feedback and affordable registered agent service are great selling points as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
If I Decide to Use ZenBusiness, Which Package Should I Choose?
It’s impossible to not be a fan of the ZenBusiness Starter plan, because it costs just $39 aside from your state fee, and it even includes registered agent service.
We also appreciate their Pro package for $149, which adds EIN obtainment, managed annual reports, and a banking resolution template.
Does ZenBusiness Handle Extra State Requirements Like New York Publication?
While some competitors won’t handle state-specific compliance requirements on your behalf, ZenBusiness offers a truly comprehensive LLC formation service. This means that if you’re forming a business in a state that requires publication service to form a compliant LLC, ZenBusiness offers to take care of it for you. For example, here’s their description of their excellent New York publication service.
For what it’s worth, Harvard Business Service does not offer publication service because it isn’t necessary in Delaware.
Which Service Has Fewer Upsells?
In our opinion, Harvard Business Services comes away as a big winner in this category, because they’re one of the few LLC formation service providers that doesn’t attempt any annoying upsells.
As for ZenBusiness, they certainly have their fair share of them. Throughout their LLC service order form, we found a series of upsells that totals $385, which is especially bothersome because every one of those upsell attempts is a feature that you already had a chance to buy on a previous screen, which means that there’s no logical reason to present them to you again.
Do These Services Share My Information With Third Parties?
Harvard Business Services doesn’t share or sell your personal information with anyone. They don’t overwhelm you with “free extras” or “special offers.” Instead, they focus their efforts on providing their own products and services to the best of their abilities.
ZenBusiness has a few third-party partnership offers that require sharing your info. Specifically, keep an eye out for their domain name registration and business website offers, as these are not in-house services.
Does Either of These Services Have a Refund Policy?
The ZenBusiness refund policy is somewhat unclear, as it relies on conditions that are not explained. Here’s how they describe their refund policy in their own words: “Once ZenBusiness has submitted your business for filing with the State under no circumstances can you charge-back or dispute the fees associated with forming your business. If you contact ZenBusiness before your business has been submitted for filing with the State, ZenBusiness may refund the charge, less a $50 cancellation fee, if certain conditions are met.”
Harvard Business Services is considerably more accommodating when it comes to refunds. As long as you request your refund within 30 days of your purchase date, they will refund your money less a 5% processing fee. If you ordered any physical products from them (like an LLC kit and seal), you’ll need to return them within seven business days of your refund request.
Can I Just Form an LLC On My Own, Without a Service?
Quite a few people do choose to form their own LLCs using the DIY option, and this option is available to you as well. We don’t typically recommend that our readers try the DIY route though, because every state has different rules and regulations for LLC formations, and it can be a real hassle to figure out exactly what your state requires.
Additionally, there’s no substitute for the peace of mind we receive from professional services like ZenBusiness and Harvard Business Services. They have so much experience that it’s easy to trust them to get the job done right.
Ready to Create Your LLC Online?
Create your LLC with Harvard Business Services or save $50 by choosing ZenBusiness.