Online incorporation services allow business owners to form corporations such as an S-corporation or C-corporation. To protect themselves from financial liability, the business owner registers their company as a legal entity.
Incorporation services offer easy-to-use software, educational materials, friendly customer service, and affordable service.
How we evaluated the online incorporation services
We considered several factors when evaluating online incorporation services. The costs of business registration vary from one company to the next. Companies differ in the time required to file. Incorporation service companies offer free educational materials to help new business owners understand the costs.
Using one online legal service provider for multiple legal services is also helpful if necessary.
A Trusted & Respected Incorporation Service!
Incorporation or LLC Formation
|#4 Swyft Filings||$299|
We considered these criteria when deciding on the best online incorporation service:
Prices: The cost of an online incorporation service can vary from $0 to $349 depending on the company offering the service and the purchased product.
Easy use: It should be easy to use business formation services with high-quality customer service. The post-purchase customer dashboard must be well-organized.
The filing time: There are a variety of online incorporation companies. These include the time it takes to complete paperwork and the costs required to expedite the submission.
Education resources: Customers need to know what products and services they purchase and why they should. Customers should have access to high-quality educational materials.
Additional legal services: You can have legal services online in addition to your business registration.
Customer service: Customer service access, options, and support. Online reviews: We reviewed online reviews of each company incorporated into a business on various review sites.
We believe Northwest to be the best online incorporation service based on the above criteria. They are both low-cost, easy-to-register services that allow you to do business.
LegalZoom vs. Northwest Registered Agent
|LegalZoom||Northwest Registered Agent|
|Incorporation||$79 + state fee||$39 + state fee|
|Price for a Registered Agent||$249 a year||First-year free, then $125/year|
|Tax ID Number (EIN)||$159||Included|
|Approval time:||30 days (unless you pay more)||3-5 business days (in most states)|
|Google reviews:||LegalZoom has 3.7 stars||Northwest has 4.5 stars|
|Customer support:||It is not easy to get in touch with them. They may try to sell more products.||Industry experts in customer service. Friendly. No sales pitches.|
|Data privacy:||LegalZoom sells customer information.||Northwest does not sell any customer information.|
#1 Northwest Registered Agent: Best for Private Business Registration
Northwest Registered Agent was originally a company that provided registered agent services.
However, they now offer various business formation services, including incorporation.
Unlike other online incorporation services, the main difference is that they promise not to sell your personal information or business to third parties.
Northwest Pricing: The cost of incorporation is simple at $39 plus any state fees. The customer must pay the fee to use it as a registered representative. Customers can’t use another registered agent or represent themselves.
Northwest Has Monthly Options Available!
Features: Northwest’s business registration software makes it easy for customers to navigate the process and see what is required. The filing time is very transparent and varies from one state to the next. Registered agent services are the best among all the companies on the platform.
Easiness To Use: Northwest Registered Agent offers one of the easiest business registration interfaces. Its interface allows customers to toggle between screens without reloading the page. If you need to modify any information, it’s simple to return to the page. You can also click on the question mark icons at several steps to open a new screen that contains additional information.
Time to File: Northwest can tell customers more precisely than LegalZoom or Rocket Lawyer how long it will take for a business to register. For example, it takes approximately 14 days to register a company in California. For an additional $65, you can expedite the filing process to an eight-day turnaround or $390 for a one-day turnaround.
Educational Resources: The website’s “How to” section contains several well-written, well-organized articles about topics like How to Start an LLC and State Taxes. The platform also provides a list of pros and cons for doing business in each state, which other legal services do not offer. Oregon, for example, has no sales tax but high income taxes. Georgia charges low fees but requires that your business be announced in a newspaper.
Additional legal services: Northwest, like LegalZoom and IncFile, offers many services beyond incorporation. This service serves as the registered agent for a business. The registered agent must renew the business each year with the state. They also need to be the contact for legal documents. Customers can also get a virtual address from Northwest, a customized operating contract, and corporate bylaws.
Customer Service: Northwest promises never to sell your business information when you contact customer service after you use its services. This is a common practice in the industry, and no other company has made this explicit.
This is important for business owners who don’t wish their data sold to banks or don’t want to receive spam emails from companies that purchase their information. Northwest offers basic customer service. The company can be contacted Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Eastern. Customers can also contact Northwest by filling out an online form. Customer support will reply via email.
Any Disadvantages? Northwest Registered Agent does not allow you to have your own registered agent. Northwest charges $125 annually for business incorporation. You cannot choose another online incorporation service to be your registered agent.
What do users think about Northwest Agent? Online reviews of Northwest Registered Agent are generally positive and can be found on multiple websites. Northwest Registered Agent customers love the transparent pricing and excellent customer service.
Northwest Online has only a handful of negative reviews. A few people complained that it took too long to register their business. This complaint seems not to be common.
#2 IncFile: Affordable Incorporation Service
IncFile offers the best service for small business owners looking for fast and affordable incorporation services.
IncFile is the only online service that does not charge a fee for registering a business compared to other competitors.
IncFile is one of our top choices because of its user-friendly interface and high-quality educational materials.
Pricing for IncFile: IncFile’s Silver package allows you to incorporate your business without paying any state fees. The Gold package costs $149 and includes several forms and an employer identification number (EIN).
IncFile’s Platinum package is $299 and includes business contract templates and expedited filing within two business days. All fees charged by InFile are additional to any state fees.
IncFile Features: IncFile’s incorporation process for companies is simple and well-designed. You can check the status of all your orders by signing up as a customer using the well-organized client dashboard. IncFile’s educational materials are also a great asset for small business owners, including state-specific information about incorporation.
Easiness To Use: The process of registering your company as a corporation with IncFile is simple. Its interface is simple and well-organized. IncFile’s user interface is well-organized and easy to navigate. IncFile allows you to select between online legal services or opt-out out purchase an EIN. IncFile offers a client dashboard that allows you to view and track your orders after you have purchased a product.
Time to File: IncFile offers a standard time-to-file of 15 business days. This is standard for online incorporation services. IncFile also provides an estimated date for business formation, which is a nice feature. IncFile offers an expedited business filing option. This allows you to submit your business registration information within two business days. For expedited filing, an additional $150 is required.
Educational Resources: IncFile offers some of the most comprehensive educational materials on incorporation than other online services like ZenBusiness and Rocket Lawyer. They provide information on entity registration for each state, including important dates and prices so that you can register your business accurately.
Additional legal services: IncFile offers many legal services to businesses, in addition to services for incorporation. The platform offers corporate kits for those who are registering as corporations. These include the documents required to legally operate a corporation, like a stock transfer ledger and a book to record meeting minutes. IncFile also assists with filing federal tax returns and Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
IncFile offers fewer legal services than LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer.
Customer Service: IncFile offers a number you can call to ask questions during the incorporation process. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Central Time. You can also submit your question via the online client support request form.
IncFile has been missing educational materials during the incorporation process. IncFile does not provide educational materials for business registration. LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer offer similar incorporation services. Many decisions can be made during incorporation. New business owners will benefit from knowing about them as they make them.
What users think about IncFile: Online user reviews of IncFile tend to be mixed. The software is easy to use and speeds up the business registration process. Some users complained that they were not explicitly told they had signed up for a recurring payment each year. Others complained about IncFile’s customer service, saying it took too long to answer their questions.
#3 ZenBusiness: Incorporation Service
ZenBusiness is an online incorporation service that stands out because of its worry-free guarantee, including two yearly corporate annual report amendments. This includes new directors and officers, making it a great option for growing businesses that expect to change officers yearly.
Additionally, ZenBusiness has an easy-to-use interface and excellent customer service. Zen Business Pricing ZenBusiness offers three pricing options and a custom plan. The Starter plan costs $49 per year and includes a registered agent.
After the first year, the Starter Plan goes up to $119/year. Zen Business Pro plans cost $149 per year and include expedited filing. Pro includes the worry-free guarantee.
This guarantees two free annual amendments to your annual report and that your corporation will be re-registered every year on time. The Premium plan at ZenBusiness is $249 per year and covers tech costs like a business email address and domain name. Any business owner can purchase a custom plan for $49 plus the state fees.
Features: ZenBusiness excels in many areas. ZenBusiness has a well-designed user interface and offers quality customer service via an online chat. ZenBusiness focuses primarily on business registration and offers only a few business forms.
ZenBusiness differs from other incorporation services because it offers a worry-free guarantee that helps business owners with annual compliance. It also allows for two amendments to the annual filings. This is great for corporations with changing leadership structures.
Easiness To Use: ZenBusiness’ incorporation software is the most user-friendly of all the ones we looked at. It is well-designed and functional. Customers can choose from one of the ZenBusiness pre-planned packages or follow a step-by-step guide to create their perfect corporation.
Time to File: ZenBusiness takes a standard amount of time to set up an online business. The Starter plan claims that the business can be formed in between two and three weeks. On the other hand, the Pro plan says it will take five to eight business days to form a business. The Premium plan registers a company in between two and four business days. This is similar to IncFile but not as fast as Swyft Filings.
Educational Resources: ZenBusiness offers updated blog articles and how-to articles for every state. It has blog articles that explain how much an LLC costs and what corporate is. ZenBusiness also has a website that explains how to register a company in each state step by step. ZenBusiness’s guides are more concise than other online corporate services like Rocket Lawyer and Legal Zoom.
Additional legal services: ZenBusiness offers only a limited number of additional legal services beyond incorporation. Business owners can create a registered agent. They can also obtain an EIN, create an operating agreement and create an annual report. This is in addition to all the other online incorporation services.
ZenBusiness offers a unique service that allows you to publish your new business in a New York publication. Customer Service ZenBusiness’s customer service team is available to take your calls from Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. CT. ZenBusiness will also email any questions you have via an online form.
ZenBusiness Disadvantages: ZenBusiness does not offer the solid additional legal services that Rocket Lawyer or Legal Zoom provides. ZenBusiness offers very few legal services to businesses and focuses on business incorporation. This can be frustrating for business owners who need assistance with intellectual property or have a question that requires an attorney’s attention.
What do users think? ZenBusiness is the online incorporation company with the highest number of user reviews. A customer service representative will respond to any negative reviews to try to resolve the problem.
Customers will receive ZenBusiness’s simple and easy-to-understand business incorporation process. It also has a fast registration. Negative reviews are often specific to situations like a business that was not submitted to the state within the expected time.
Swyft Filing: The Best for Quick Business Registrations Swyft Filings Swyft Filings’ speedy business registration is one of their main advantages over other online incorporation services.
In New York, for example, they can return your business incorporation documents to you within one business day. Swyft Filings, which costs $49 for the basic package of business registrations, is another affordable option.
Swyft Filings Pricing: Swyft Filings’ Basic package costs $49 for business incorporation.
The Standard package is $149 and includes all the Basic packages and an EIN, operating agreement, and custom organizational minutes.
The Platinum package from Swyft Filings also includes an electronic copy of all documents and a FedEx tracking code. All package prices are inclusive of state registration fees. Swyft Filings Features Swyft Filings is a high-quality incorporation service that has many features.
Fastest incorporation turnaround is the main feature.
While some competitors claim that a business can be registered within 30 days, Swyft Filings’ Standard package allows for a faster filing time of fewer than 15 days. There is no other service that offers a money-back guarantee for incorporation services.
Swyft Filings offers a money-back guarantee if you are unhappy with your experience.
Easiness To Use:Swyft Filings incorporation program was easy to use and functional. Each registration process step is clearly explained, and further information is provided when necessary. A step-by-step progress indicator is located at the top of this website. It shows you where you are in the business incorporation process.
Time to File: Swyft Filings is known for its fast turnaround times and document processing. We cannot confirm this, but the platform claims that customers will receive their business registration documents in 15 business days.
This is less than LegalZoom’s 30-day turnaround. Swyft Filings charges an additional $145 and takes two business days, depending on where you live.
Educational Resources: Swyft Filings has several business registration guides. These guides can help you learn more about registering a business. The graphics and guides for each state list the pros and cons of registering business there.
Blog posts also provide information on small businesses and registering a business, such as “How to Dissolve an LLC” or “Start Your Next Business, 20 Essential Steps.” Additional legal services Swyft Filings offers more than just business incorporation services.
They also offer services like a registered agent and a customizable operating agreement. Swyft Filings can help business owners search and determine the licenses and permits required by a specific business.
Customer Service: Swyft Filings can be reached Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. CT. Customers can also chat via live chat if they prefer to text rather than speak on the phone. Swyft Filings is unique in that it offers a money-back guarantee for all services. Keep in mind, however, that Swyft Filings cannot refund fees paid by the state.
Any Negatives? Swyft Filings lacks vital additional services. LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer offer legal advice by licensed business lawyers for a fee. Swyft Filings doesn’t. Swyft Filings does have business incorporation experts on staff.
What users think about Swyft Filings: It’s mixed in the Swyft Filings reviews online. The price of incorporation, quick turnaround times, and helpful customer service representatives were all positive. However, they may not be able to answer any specific questions about your business or other aspects of business formation.
Customer complaints revolved around upcharges for different services during checkout, technical issues with the chat software, and products not ordered.
LegalZoom is the pioneer and still trusted business within the disruptive industry of online legal services. They now have a growing number of competitors, grabbing a larger piece of the LLC formation business.
The company was founded as early as 1999 during the infancy of the world wide web—one of the first companies that saw the internet’s potential for online legal services.
LegalZoom continues to have a strong presence.
Still, they are no longer the only kid on the block, and in regards to the other online LLC formation services available today, people are asking, “is LegalZoom the best?” We will try to answer that question and give our picks for the best LLC filing services; let’s get started.
LegalZoom has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Suppose you desire a strong brand name with decades of experience with having formed over 1+ million businesses, and you don’t mind paying top dollar for these services. In that case, LegalZoom might be a good fit for you, but there are some cheaper alternatives business formations in 2023.
LegalZoom LLC Plan’ Express Gold’
- $349. LLC Filing
- $249. One-Year Registered Agent
- $159. Operating Agreement, EIN
- $69. Compliance Calendar = $826 + state fee
Try LegalZoom’s LLC service if you like working with a strong brand name and don’t mind paying about double the price of other leading LLC services.
LegalZoom LLC Formation Pricing
LegalZoom formations start at $79.
But what about LegalZoom’s Registered Agent Services?
What about LegalZoom’s Operating Agreement & EIN? (Employer Identification Number)
These are not on the above list, but they can be found as add-ons
In my opinion, LegalZoom seems pricey!
Online incorporation services can assist and guide you through the formation process. They can be your partner, providing ongoing support and compliance reminders. Our top pick for online incorporation services is Northwest Registered Agent.