As an entrepreneur who is looking to set up a new business but unwilling to go through the stress of filing mountains of paperwork, you need a service provider who’s sure to give your business the best. Over the years, ZenBusiness LLC has proven to be one of the industry's top-rated LLC services.
ZenBusiness is regarded as a top LLC formation company for several reasons, but mostly because they have been able to help many entrepreneurs build their LLC companies from scratch. However, the million-dollar question is, are they worth it?
In this article, you’ll learn about what the ZenBusiness service offers, the pros and cons, and everything you need to make confident decisions that will boost your business. First, let’s see what ZenBusiness is really about.
Interested in ZenBusiness?
ZenBusiness is an LLC formation service founded in 2015 to help prospective business owners start, run, and grow their LLC companies from scratch. This Texas-based company has fulfilled this mandate by assisting several US entrepreneurs in building their LLC companies.
Managing a business demands a lot of commitment and courage. Many entrepreneurs start their businesses hoping to create a comfortable living for themselves and their families. Unfortunately, the challenges and stress of starting up a business discourage many entrepreneurs.
Not every entrepreneur has prior knowledge of setting up or running a business. ZenBusiness is an excellent tool for exploring that unknown territory. The company has excellent customer support, straightforward LLC formation plans, positive customer reviews, and affordable business formation services.
ZenBusiness provides LLC formation, registered agent services, compliance guarantee, EIN acquisition, CPA assessments, website development, and more. On the ZenBusiness website, there are three incorporation plans to choose from. They are Starter, Pro, and Premium packages.
Their services are also one of the best and most affordable LLC formation companies on the market. What's more, you get a free year of registered agent services for an LLC.
Structure Breakdown: Who is ZenBusiness Good For?
One of the decisions you have to make as you start your business is the type of business structure you'll use for your company. The decision should depend on how you plan to run the business, keeping in mind how you will pay taxes and how liabilities will impact you and the company itself. Here is a breakdown of which business structures ZenBusiness is a good fit for.
Forming an LLC can be overwhelming and daunting, but ZenBusiness can help you form your LLC and manage all required paperwork.
ZenBusiness makes this process much easier and stress-free for you as an entrepreneur. They will also assist you with obtaining EIN’s and any other IRS paperwork.
Pros of using ZenBusiness to form your LLC:
- You can name ZenBusiness as your registered agent, so all-important tax-related or government information will be sent through them.
- They can handle your certificate of formation and basic filing of the business.
- They can continue to support your domain and ongoing compliance claims.
Cons of using ZenBusiness to form your LLC:
- There are costly fees for services like website creation and domain creation.
- They do not offer many website template options.
ZenBusiness can help with form both C corporations and S corporations. They will walk you through the entire process and can help file most of the documents.
Some of the benefits of a corporation include lower taxes since the profit is shared among the shareholders and the board. It has a limited liability concerning company debts.
ZenBusiness offers a service that helps file a corporation or LLC. The pricing depends on the state fees, but ZenBusiness charges very low rates on top of that.
Pros of using ZenBusiness to form a corporation:
- ZenBusiness can assist with any type of corporation you wish to open and walk you through the process of creating shareholders.
- They will shorten the processing times that it takes to register a corporation, especially if you pay a bit extra for premium services.
- ZenBusiness also has a service that can be used to determine the licenses needed in your state to open a corporation.
Cons of using ZenBusiness to form a corporation:
- If you wish to get everything done through ZenBusiness (website, EIN, basic formation, etc.) it can be a very expensive process. Corporations are pricier to run in the long run as well.
Partnerships are relatively less expensive to start since the partners contribute the initial capital. Partners sometimes work out an agreement for partnerships to work successfully and specify roles to each person involved in the partnership. ZenBusiness is also able to assist with the initial setup of a partnership and can help draft business partnership agreements.
Pros of using ZenBusiness to form a partnership:
- ZenBusiness is capable of helping you file the necessary partnership agreement, which is unique to this type of business.
If you're thinking about starting a single-member LLC or sole proprietorship, ZenBusiness can help you form and manage it.
With a sole proprietorship, there is no legal protection between you and your business as you are, more or less, one of the same.
Pros of using ZenBusiness to start a sole proprietorship:
- They will help you file your business name or “doing business as” (DBA).
- You can also use ZenBusiness to check any other requirements there may be in your specific state when setting up a sole proprietorship.
Cons of using ZenBusiness to start a sole proprietorship:
- Starting a sole proprietorship on your own is actually a very easy process, so using ZenBusiness for it may not be worth the money.
Non-profits benefit from tax-exempt status, and both the directors and the founders enjoy limited liability for business debts.
However, starting a non-profit business includes a mountain of paperwork, high costs, and constant public inspection regarding finances. ZenBusiness can help you manage all of that.
Pros of using ZenBusiness to start a non-profit:
- ZenBusiness can help you file all of the tax-exempt paperwork and IRS documents needed to start your non-profit.
ZenBusiness Packages & Pricing
ZenBusiness offers three pricing packages you can choose from, depending on the features and incorporation services you would like to include. This section covers a detailed breakdown of each package. Note that the pricing excludes government fees.
Starter Package - $49/year
The starter package is ZenBusiness's basic and cheapest package. The package includes an essential incorporation service and registered agent services. A registered agent (RA) is needed since every corporation needs to maintain compliance with the state government. The RA receives important deliveries for the business.
ZenBusiness relieves you from the stress of handling document deliveries by yourself by acting as your registered agent.
The plan also includes providing a customized corporate operating agreement (or bylaws) form to help you define your business's ownership structure. The starter package is all you need if you want an affordable way to file your LLCs and don’t mind putting a little effort and time into registering for an Employee Identification Number (EIN) and other necessities.
Key features of the package include:
- Free operating agreement
- Customer support through phone and email
- Filing articles for companies
- Complete access to necessary paperwork and document for your LLC
- One-year registered agent services with LLC formation (only $119 for subsequent years)
- Worry-free CPA assessment with an in-house accountant - includes recommendations for accounting software and licensed CPAs
Pro Package - $199/year
The Pro Package is designed for entrepreneurs who need more features than those in the starter package to get their businesses up and running. The package contains all the elements in the basic package with even more support.
With the Pro Package, ZenBusiness will help your company acquire an Employee Identification Number – EIN (also called federal tax ID number). The plan also includes the provision of a banking resolution.
The federal tax ID number is a social security number for business entities. It allows you to pay taxes, open business bank accounts, and hire employees.
The package offers a Worry-Free Guarantee, which includes compliance management service and annual reports management. ZenBusiness also prepares and files your annual report – which provides for filing two amendments per year.
Key features of the package include:
- Acquisition of Employer Identification Number (EIN) needed to file your LLC taxes and open a bank account (the service costs $70 extra if purchased separately)
- Domain name registration ($25)
- Excellent filing speed (formation documents completed within one week)
- Worry-Free guarantee, which includes insurance on document filings to keep them in good standing if they're not submitted in time
Premium Package - $299/year
The ZenBusiness Premium Package includes all the starter and pro packages features and some extra perks.
Key features of the package include:
- Expedited filing speed
- Business email address
- Domain name registration and name privacy
- 100% accuracy guarantee
- Business website to allow customers to establish an online presence at a very reasonable price
Overall Value vs. The Competition
Overall, ZenBusiness is one of the best values on the market for incorporation services. Their price point is only second to IncFile in terms of the cheapest options out there.
Here is how ZenBusiness stacks up vs. competitors.
- ZenBusiness vs. LegalZoom
- ZenBusiness vs. Incfile
- ZenBusiness vs. Inc Authority
- ZenBusiness vs. Harbor Compliance
- ZenBusiness vs. Northwest Registered Agent
- ZenBusiness vs. BizFilings
- ZenBusiness vs. Incorporate.com
- ZenBusiness vs. MyCompanyWorks
- ZenBusiness vs. Rocket Lawyer
- ZenBusiness vs. Swyft Filings
ZenBusiness Document Management & Online Experience
ZenBusiness offers a very straightforward and user-friendly experience when navigating through their website. At the click of a button, you can begin the process of choosing a package that suits your needs. Your entry will then go through a five-step confirmation process before your business is registered.
Document management involves the local scanning and uploading of all official legal documents to allow access from your online business account. With ZenBusiness, the regular compliance alerts and online document management system make them the right third-party agent your company needs.
They can collect all essential legal documents and upload them as required, which will then be available in your online database. You can even request physical copies, and they will be mailed to you.
After the set-up process, they continue to monitor your business and ensure all documents are updated and in good standing with the state.
ZenBusiness Processing Time
Technically, it is not compulsory to have someone else file your company’s LLC paperwork for you. However, when you hire a formation service that is fast enough, it saves you time and energy.
ZenBusiness processes orders in a somewhat different way than others. Unlike most companies that base their estimates on the state’s turnaround, ZenBusiness correlates your order's speed to the package you choose.
If you purchase the starter package, you should expect your business formation ready in approximately two weeks. The pro package has a processing time of roughly one week, while the premium package has a turnaround of 3 – 5 days or less.
ZenBusiness Compliance & Track Record
Any LLC formation company that will gain its prospective clients' trust must have a glowing track record and positive customer reviews.
Although ZenBusiness was founded only about five years ago, it has established itself in a highly competitive industry, especially with its state-of-art automation technology.
The automation technology used in completing the business services allows ZenBusiness to offer lower prices than their competitors like Northwest and LegalZoom.
According to the spokesperson at ZenBusiness, the company plans to form 1 million+ new businesses by the end of 2025. They have already created thousands of companies in their five years of existence, and the 4,400+ positive customer reviews prove their services have been excellent.
This is one among many other positive reviews on ZenBusiness. You can be sure that your business plans and processing are in good hands.
ZenBusiness Customer Service
ZenBusiness has survived as one of the top LLC formation services for a long time, and this is mainly thanks to the team of professional customer relations and support staff. The team does all that is within their power and goes the extra mile to assist your company with filing and preparation concerns.
Many online reviews from entrepreneurs showed that customer support quality is top-notch, especially during the business formation process. They lead you through the formation process and help you choose the best LLC products needed to start your business quickly.
You can reach their customer support team in many ways, including email, phone, and webchat. However, the chat option seems to be the best, especially when asking questions about the formation process.
The customer support representatives are knowledgeable and are available during office hours, and respond to the chats as quickly as possible.
ZenBusiness is also a registered public benefit corporation aside from other services they provide. In other words, they also make charitable efforts like lending options for low-income individuals and minority-owned businesses.
The Last Word: Is ZenBusiness Worth It?
Overall, ZenBusiness has several features that make them highly recommended and one of the best LLC services online.
ZenBusiness also provides extra features and services but doesn't pressure you into upgrading, unlike certain other providers that are a little pushier. One of the features that make ZenBusiness unique is that they offer to handle annual report filing and other ongoing LLC maintenance. This is in a bid to help you effortlessly launch and maintain your business.
The only downside we can see to ZenBusiness is that they are not the cheapest LLC service. Although they are affordable, there are still cheaper options. If you're on a strict budget, it may be best to choose a different company. Just know in many cases, you get what you pay for.