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 Inc Authority 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 Inc Authority 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 Inc Authority and ZenBusiness Offer Good Value?
|🥇ZenBusiness||Starts at $39||(4.8/5)||Excellent||Absolutely|
|Inc Authority||Starts at $0||(4.6/5)||Excellent||Absolutely|
ZenBusiness and Inc Authority are two of the top LLC services online, and we’re quite confident in their abilities to efficiently form your compliant business entity. Each has its own advantages when compared to each other, but in general, we prefer ZenBusiness.
Inc Authority does have an advantage when it comes to pricing, as they offer an LLC formation service package that is entirely free of charge, as long as you pay your state fee.
However, ZenBusiness has far better options when it comes to the higher-priced premium packages that include plenty of additional features. We also appreciate the fact that they’re a public benefit corporation, as they donate a portion of their proceeds to help economically and socially disadvantaged people start their own businesses.
7 Things They Have in Common
1) Affordable: With either ZenBusiness or Inc Authority, you’ll save a significant amount of money on your LLC formation compared to hiring a business attorney to handle your formation process.
2) Great Customer Feedback: Both of these companies receive high average rating scores in their customer reviews, which indicates an excellent level of client satisfaction.
3) Registered Agent Service: ZenBusiness and Inc Authority both include one full year of registered agent service with all of their LLC formation service packages. Considering the fact that every LLC needs a registered agent anyway, this is a great offer.
4) 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 Inc Authority?
5) Efficiency: With either ZenBusiness or Inc Authority, 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.
6) Experience: Both Inc Authority 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.
7) Trustworthy: These are both entirely legitimate operations with strong track records. These aren’t fly-by-night companies, but rather they’re well-respected entities with plenty of expertise to get the job done right.
Side by Side Comparisons
It’s quite difficult to beat ZenBusiness when it comes to pricing, seeing as they offer their Starter LLC formation package for just $39, a price point that includes registered agent service. However, Inc Authority is one of the few companies in this industry that actually can undercut ZenBusiness’ pricing, seeing as they offer a free LLC formation package.
You don’t need us to tell you that paying zero dollars is typically preferable to spending $39. However, we still tend to prefer ZenBusiness to Inc Authority overall. Sure, you can save some money with Inc Authority for your LLC formation itself, but ZenBusiness is the better company when it comes to their premium packages and additional features.
You can learn more about this in our individual reviews for each company, but Inc Authority makes up for its free LLC package by charging very high prices for its paid packages with more features.
The free package offered by Inc Authority and the $39 package provided by ZenBusiness are quite similar. They both start with the full formation process for your LLC, along with one year of registered agent service. Aside from that, ZenBusiness includes a sample LLC operating agreement, while Inc Authority bundles in an S corporation tax election filing (which most LLCs don’t need).
This is a category where Inc Authority has a noteworthy advantage. Inc Authority was formed in 1989, and they’ve formed more than 140,000 LLCs and corporations over the years. On the other hand, ZenBusiness is a more recent company. They’ve been around since 2015, and while they’re already formed thousands of businesses, they still don’t have the level of experience that Inc Authority provides.
In our opinion, this category is a toss-up. ZenBusiness is available from 9 am to 9 pm ET on weekdays and 11 am to 8 pm ET on Sundays, and you can contact them via web chat, phone, or email. As for Inc Authority, they also offer the same three options (chat, phone, email), but they have much shorter hours of operation (11 am to 8 pm ET on weekdays).
We have plenty of experience with both companies’ support teams, and we think they’re both quite good at what they do. They both have excellent response times, and their representatives have always seemed knowledgeable and friendly to us.
Overall, ZenBusiness wins this category easily because their support reps are available for 24 more hours per week than Inc Authority’s support team.
With Inc Authority, turnaround times are based on the requirements of each state. These processing times can vary from just a couple of business days all the way up to several weeks.
ZenBusiness takes a different approach that bases processing times on which level of LLC formation service package you purchase from them, although they do say that these speeds vary a bit in some states. In general, they have a 3-4 week turnaround time with the Starter package, which they’ll speed up to 1-2 weeks with the Pro package, and 3-5 days with the Premium package.
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. Inc Authority also bundles in a year of registered agent service with any business formation package, and they charge just $99 per year otherwise.
ZenBusiness excels when it comes to customer feedback, as they have more than 2,500 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.
Inc Authority’s customer satisfaction reputation is arguably even better. We found more than 4,000 reviews of their services, and they were overwhelmingly positive. Their clients clearly love their free LLC formation service offering, and they also seem to appreciate their quick processing speeds.
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. Still, we will give ZenBusiness a slight edge because their website is a bit more streamlined and user-friendly than the Inc Authority site is.
With either Inc Authority or ZenBusiness, there are plenty of additional services to consider. As you might expect, there’s quite a bit of overlap between their services, as they both offer registered agent service, EIN acquisition, certificates of good standing, and more.
However, only ZenBusiness offers LLC publication service in states (like New York) that require it, and they also provide assistance with accounting and bookkeeping, which Inc Authority does not.
On the other hand, Inc Authority has a business funding feature that can help you grow your business, and they also have a couple of seemingly random personal services, like revocable living trusts.
Which Is the Best LLC Setup Service for You?
ZenBusiness and Inc Authority 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 LLC services.
|🥇ZenBusiness||Starts at $39||(4.8/5)||Excellent||Absolutely|
|Inc Authority||Starts at $0||(4.6/5)||Excellent||Absolutely|
➥ Choose ZenBusiness if You Are:
Are you looking for the industry’s most well-rounded LLC formation service provider? Do you want some advanced features with your formation package? These are two great reasons to go with ZenBusiness.
➦ Choose Inc Authority if You Are:
Are you interested in getting your LLC formed for free (except for your state fee)? Perhaps you place a high value on experience and longevity? If so, Inc Authority is for you.
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 and a sample operating agreement.
We also appreciate their Pro package for $149, which adds EIN obtainment, managed annual reports, and a banking resolution.
Does ZenBusiness Handle Extra State Requirements Like NY 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 NY LLC, ZenBusiness offers to take care of the publication requirements for you.
Which Service Has Fewer Upsells?
Inc Authority’s order form has a page of add-on features at the end, but it doesn’t really bother us seeing as they’re providing a free service to begin with.
As for ZenBusiness, they certainly have their fair share of upsells. Throughout their LLC service order form, we found a series of upsells that totals $285, which is somewhat annoying because every one of those upsell attempts is a feature that you already had a chance to buy on a previous screen.
Do These Services Share My Information With Third Parties?
Both of these companies have a few third-party partnership offers presented as “special features” or “free bonuses.” Specifically, Inc Authority includes a business checking account from Bank of America, along with a tax planning consultation and a business funding analysis.
ZenBusiness also includes a couple of these info-sharing attempts, with features like domain name registration and a business website package.
Does Either of These Services Have a Refund Policy?
On Inc Authority’s website, they specifically mention that they will not grant any refund requests for any reason.
As for ZenBusiness, their 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.”
Which LLC Formation Website Is Faster?
Inc Authority’s turnaround times vary from state to state ― in some states, they can get your LLC formed in just a few days, while in some others it will take several weeks.
ZenBusiness has a different method for estimating turnaround times that is based on which LLC formation service package you purchase from them, although they do say that there is some state-to-state variation as well. Customers who choose their Starter package should expect a 3-4 week turnaround. If you buy their Pro plan, they’ll form your business in 1-2 weeks, and the Premium package has a quick turnaround of 3-5 days.
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. 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 Inc Authority. They have so much experience that it’s easy to trust them to get the job done right.
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