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Business formation services handle the entire business creation process, saving you money and cutting down on stress. We spent 10 days reviewing over 20 business formation services to decide the best. As a result, we decided that ZenBusiness is the best for most people who want to form a business. It’s a simple solution with very accessible pricing.
The Best Business Formation Services for Most
The best business formation service for most is ZenBusiness. It’s a straightforward service that allows you to start and LLC in under 10 minutes. With pricing starting at $49 plus state fees, it’s competitively priced, and includes everything you need to start a business on the right foot.
ZenBusiness can provide a registered agent, tax ID number, rush filing, and other business formation services if you need them. A free accounting consultation comes with every ZenBusiness plan, so you’ll have a chance to talk with an expert before committing to a particular business formation.
The Best Business Formation Services To Consider
- ZenBusiness – Best for Most
- LegalZoom – Best for Growing Businesses
- BizFilings – Best for Compliance Monitoring
- Rocket Lawyer – Best for Quick Legal Advice
- Swyft Filings – Best for Customer Support
When It Makes Sense To Invest In Business Formation Services
It’s fair to say that starting a business is challenging. You’ll need legal assistance and document filings to get the ball rolling, along with all the added stress that comes with such a large undertaking. It can be tempting to give up before things get started.
Business formation services help take some of the pressure away, allowing you to spend your precious time elsewhere.
Some people, for example, worry about the cost of hiring an attorney to sort out the legal side of things but want assurance the formation process will still get completed accurately. Business formation services can help here, simplifying the process and providing legal support at a fraction of the cost of hiring a lawyer.
Business formation services allow new businesses to get alerts when reports are due as well. For instance, while the state will send out mail, dedicated email alerts help keep companies on track. The additional notice ensures you don’t miss things, and a business formation service creates copies of the key paperwork, occasionally even providing a registered agent to help out.
During your time forming your business, it’s natural to have many questions about doing things. The good news is that business formation services can provide top-notch customer support, overseeing the existing service and answering additional questions when you have them. These customer teams are made up of legal experts, often lawyers themselves, and come as part of the package.
If any of these concerns sound familiar, a business formation service will be able to help you and get your company started on the right track.
#1 – ZenBusiness – The Best for Most
For a simple LLC filing service that gets the job done, ZenBusiness is one of the best options on the market and comes with the extra support new businesses need.
While there’s more to ZenBusiness than LLC filings, it’s an area it specializes in overall. For example, you can get your LLC going for as little as $49 per month plus state fees—a competitive price that’s hard to beat considering the support available.
You’ll receive a free accounting and tax assessment to determine your bookkeeping, accounting, and tax needs too.
Add to that free business compliance guides that ensure your business stays in good standing with the state, ZenBusiness also includes an annual report service as well as phone and email support–the value speaks for itself.
The Starter plan begins at $49 billed annually plus state fees, but higher tiers include Pro and Premium billed at $199 and $299, respectively. These higher tiers offer extra services like a complete business website, domain name privacy, and faster filing.
#2 – LegalZoom – The Best for Growing Businesses
LegalZoom is a popular business formation service that provides the help you need whatever you want to do.
The service has helped over 1.6 million LLCs, and over 400,000 corporations get started. Due to its exhaustive list of services, there’s a good chance it’ll be able to get your business up and running. For instance, not knowing what type of entity you are is a common problem, and LegalZoom can help you determine that and suggest what service you’ll need.
If you want to start an LLC, you provide your business name, quickly answer some questions, and the paperwork gets filed from there. Other services include help with annual reports, a practical compliance calendar to manage necessary filings, and the easy creation of articles of amendment.
You can start an LLC from $79 plus state filing fees, a corporation from $149 plus state filing fees, or a non-profit from $99 plus state filing fees.
#3 – BizFilings – The Best for Compliance Monitoring
BizFilings has been around for over 20 years and is a great business formation service for companies of all shapes and sizes.
We particularly like the compliance monitoring service—this comes in the form of the aptly named “BizComply Compliance Monitoring Tool.” The tool helps keep your company in compliance with ongoing state requirements and other corporate customs.
Features like the Alert Manager help you track and stay on top of any necessary compliance events. The Company Dashboard provides an overview of crucial company data, such as tax ID numbers, state file numbers, and more. There’s also a useful Forms Library that allows you to access, download, and customize forms for meeting state requirements. It’s quick to save, store, and print all documents too.
To create an LLC, you can get started on the Basic tier for $99 per month plus state fees.
#4 – Rocket Lawyer – The Best for Quick Legal Advice
Best for Quick Legal Advice
Need advice from legal experts but don’t have time to wait? Rocket Lawyer allows you to post questions directly to the pros and get fast responses. It offers comprehensive legal guides, easy access to legally binding documents, and you can download and print from any device.
Rocket Lawyer gives you access to affordable legal advice that you can count on whenever you need it.
You’ll be able to get quick answers to your legal questions, and by quick, we mean it’s as simple as posting a query to a qualified lawyer and waiting for your response. Responses typically come in less than a day, and sometimes in a few hours.
Rocket Lawyer also provides legal guidance via hundreds of comprehensive legal guides, and you get access to legally binding documents for your business or family within a few clicks. There are unlimited revisions and copies, and you can access, download and print from any device you want. It’s as simple as that.
Free online legal questions start at $49.99 per question, and a seven-day free trial is available.
#5 – Swyft Filings – The Best for Customer Support
Best for Customer Support
Forget email and live chat: Swyft Filings assigns you a Business Specialist you can reach via a personal phone call for extra peace of mind. The service also quickly takes care of annual reports, and a helpful incorporation wizard makes that tough starting decision easy.
Swyft Filings provides personal customer support to answer any questions you may have whenever you have them.
Upon signing up, you get assigned a personal “Business Specialist.” From there, you’ll be given their direct phone number and email to answer questions as and when required. It’s a next-level service available when you need it, removing the waiting time you can typically expect elsewhere. Your Business Specialist can even handle your business filings for you.
Swyft Filings also offers annual reports, name change services, and you can get your EIN or Federal Tax ID using the service. There’s also a handy incorporation wizard available to help you select the right business type for you—this is clearly presented and provides all the information a new business could need in a single place, comparing and contrasting the key differences.
The Basic package costs $49 plus the state filing fees, and you can get started right here.
Methodology for Choosing the Best Business Formation Services
Here you’ll find the most important factors you need to consider when picking the best business formation services.
Knowing what business or entity type you fit under will significantly help you pick the best formation service.
There are Limited Liability Companies (LLCs), C Corporations (C-Corps), S Corporations (S-Corps), Non-profits, Certified B Corporations (B Corps), and Sole Proprietorships to name but a few.
Not every business formation service on the market will provide the solutions for all of these or even specialize in them, which can stop you in your tracks. If you don’t know your entity type, it’s best to pick a service that helps you decide and go from there.
While value for money is something you’d look for across many different business services, formation services are particularly good at advertising prices that seemingly include everything…but actually don’t.
It’s imperative to carefully look at the service you like and see what you actually get for your money. You might see a low price, but then realize all the extras quickly add up and push you over budget. Higher prices might be less attractive but can sometimes include everything you need, and in reality, for cheaper.
Once you like the sound of a formation service, be sure to take the necessary time to work out the actual costs, so you don’t get a nasty shock later—it’s the last thing a new business needs.
On our list, you’ll find some business formation services that offer personalized support, while others will provide things like email or live chat options instead.
It’s important to think about the level of customer service you require from a business formation service to help make your decision easier.
If you feel like you need personal, specialist support—someone you can talk to whenever—then email support is unlikely to be enough. Others may be perfectly happy with just that.
Take the time to think it through and then decide on the best service for you.
Creating a new business isn’t easy, and some people, unfortunately, get put off by the challenge. Thankfully, business formation services can take away a lot of stress, leaving you time to focus on the most critical areas.
For simple and easy LLC filing, you won’t find much better than ZenBusiness. LegalZoom and BizFilings are better for companies looking to stay compliant and avoid penalties as they expand into new areas of business.
If you need access to quick legal advice, Rocket Lawyer gets you the answers from the experts without fuss.
On the other hand, Swyft Filings is a smart choice if you need specialized customer support and provides personal Business Specialists you can reach directly.
Whichever business formation service you like, think about the customer support, what type of entity you are, and the value you’re getting before committing. After all, forewarned is forearmed.