ZenBusiness Review (2024 Review) Is It Legit?

Jon Morgan
Published by Jon Morgan | Co-Founder & Chief Editor
Last updated: April 18, 2024
FACT CHECKED by Lou Viveros, Growth & Transition Advisor
Methodology
We diligently evaluate each service provider showcased in our reviews and guides. By interacting anonymously with their business formation and services, and leveraging the insights of an independent review team, we strive to offer unbiased, evidence-based suggestions. Learn more

ZenBusiness is one of the best-known business formation services that’s been around for years. The platform has garnered thousands of positive reviews and testimonials from clients.

As a team of business enthusiasts, we wanted to see if this LLC service would live up to its expectations.

With that goal in mind, we have extensively researched ZenBusiness and covered the cost of hiring this service and its benefits, pros, cons, and more.

Continue reading our ZenBusiness review to decide if this LLC service suits you.

What Is ZenBusiness?

ZenBusiness logo and a young entrepreneur using a laptop in the background

ZenBusiness is an online business formation service that was founded in 2015 and has helped to form over 500,000 businesses.

They have also received thousands of positive reviews from satisfied customers across the US.

ZenBusiness has constantly evolved its business model, as evidenced by its growth of around 400%, jumping from 30,000 to 200,000 users in 2020.

Its goal is to empower the new generation of small business owners to take charge of their futures.

"All forms of success in a business are founded directly by action."

- Danya Shafkeh, Corporate Attorney & Writer of Venture Smarter

Our #1 Recommendation

Zenbusiness

ZenBusiness logo and a young entrepreneur using a laptop in the background
Support
5.0
Price
4.9
Features
5.0
Turnaround
4.9
Overall
5.0

ZenBusiness Review Ratings

In Venture Smarter's review of ZenBusiness, we evaluated various aspects of their service offerings.

Our ratings are based on first-hand experience and extensive research, reflecting the overall effectiveness, efficiency, and customer satisfaction associated with ZenBusiness.

Support - 5.0/5

ZenBusiness excels in customer support, earning a perfect score.

We were pleased that their team is readily accessible through multiple channels, including phone, email, and web chat, ensuring prompt and helpful responses.

This level of support is particularly beneficial for new business owners navigating the complexities of LLC formation and compliance.

Price - 4.9/5

We rated ZenBusiness 4.9 out of 5 for its pricing, which balances affordability and value. Their packages are competitively priced, considering the comprehensive range of services offered.

The slight deduction is due to the fact that some additional services, while valuable, may increase the overall cost.

Features - 5.0/5

ZenBusiness offers a robust set of features, deserving a 5.0 rating.

After using their services, we were impressed that they offer comprehensive formation packages to cover everything from basic LLC formation to advanced compliance and support tools.

Worry-free compliance and customizable plans adds significant value for business owners.

Turnaround - 4.9/5

The turnaround time for ZenBusiness services is impressive, meriting a 4.9 rating. They offer expedited processing options, ensuring quick and efficient handling of LLC formations and filings.

The rating slightly falls short of perfect due to variations in processing times, which can depend on state-specific factors.

LLC Service Features And Prices

The screenshot below shows what packages ZenBusiness has to offer:

  • Starter LLC Formation Package ($0 Plus State Filling Fees): Includes an LLC name availability search, filing and preparation of Articles of Organization, a free accounting assessment, a statement of the organizer, which can help to form a business bank account, and ZenBusiness Money Essential, which is an expense tracking and tax deduction tool. We were also offered a standard filing speed, a 100% accuracy guarantee, and a worry-free compliance option for the first year. Customers can enjoy a 1-month free trial for Money Pro Bookkeeping and Website Builder services, with subsequent rates starting at $30/month and $15/month, respectively.
  • Pro LLC Formation Package ($199 Plus State Filling Fees): The Pro package includes everything from the Starter package, an LLC operating agreement, an Employer Identification Number, and an expedited filing speed of up to 1 to 2 business days.
  • Premium LLC Formation Package ($349 Plus State Fees): The Premium package includes everything from the Starter and Pro packages plus business document templates, rush filing, business domain name privacy, business email address, and a customizable business website.
  • Registered Agent Services ($199/year): With this plan, ZenBusiness can act as the primary contact point with the Secretary of State and handle all legal correspondence on behalf of small business owners. The service renews annually for the same standard amount.

Additional Services

Since we hired ZenBusiness before, Venture Smarter also learned that the company offers the following additional services:

  • Worry-free compliance $199/yr
  • S-Corp registration starts at $0
  • Corporation registration starts at $0
  • DBA Name varies per state
  • Operating Agreements $125
  • Compliance $199/yr
  • Annual Reports $100/yr
  • Business License Report $99
  • Registered Agent $199/yr
  • Name Reservation $50
  • Domain Registration $25/yr
  • Website Building $129/yr
  • Business Email 25/yr

Benefits

ZenBusiness truly stands out when compared to other business formation platforms. It is a top choice, particularly due to the variety of perks that the company offers.

I used ZenBusiness to form my LLC, and I recommend it. All the documents are systematically arranged, making the app easy to use.

An image of a man wearing a headset and talking to a customer
  • Great Customer Support
    ZenBusiness offers exceptional customer support. It rightfully deserves a rating of 9/10. Its services are widely available and can be accessed through smartphones, email, and web chat.
  • Ease Of Ordering
    It only takes minutes to fill out the ZenBusiness order form. You choose the package you prefer, enter basic information about your LLC or corporation, and they do the rest after you pay the state filing fees.
  • Quick Turnaround Time
    With ZenBusiness, you can expedite the process by choosing the appropriate package for your business needs. Specifying which state you are doing business in is essential if you want an exact time estimate.
  • A Seamless Process
    ZenBusiness makes it easy to set up your LLC by guiding you through the entire process. The whole process is completed online in just a few minutes.
  • Flexibility To Build Your Plan
    ZenBusiness offers three standard packages; however, you can create your own plan with personalized services. This flexibility is invaluable for business owners to tailor their plans to their business needs and size, especially since you still need to pay state filing fees.
  • No Hidden Fees
    ZenBusiness is entirely transparent with its fees. Before choosing a plan, ZenBusiness will give you the pricing with features included so you know what to expect.
  • Less Paperwork
    ZenBusiness handles the ongoing paperwork necessary for your LLC. They handle annual reports and file the documentation for you, so you don’t have to keep track of paperwork and what was sent in and when.
  • 60-Day Money-Back Guarantee
    ZenBusiness backs your purchase with a 60-day money-back guarantee. If you weren't completely satisfied with the service or simply wish to cancel a subscription, you can get a full refund by contacting customer support.
  • Free Service Features Included
    Compared to other services, ZenBusiness offers several free inclusions, such as tax advice, their money dashboard, and a business bank account. All of these features add to the overall value that ZenBusiness offers for a low price.
  • Keeps Compliance with the Worry-Free Guarantee
    The Worry-Free Guarantee is an excellent service ZenBusiness provides for the first year. This assurance gives you peace of mind since you will be informed of significant filings, receive two yearly modifications, and get the support you need to be current and compliant in case something goes wrong.

Downsides

  • Registered Agent Services are Only Available as an Add-on
    Many of ZenBusiness's rivals include a free registered agent for at least a year. This is not the case with ZenBusiness because you must purchase the package separately if you need them to be your registered agent.
  • EIN Service Package is Expensive
    The IRS states that you should apply for an EIN early enough to have your number when you need to file a return or make a deposit [1]. However, despite how crucial and easy getting an EIN is, the EIN service is quite costly, given the little time and work required to complete the registration independently. Other providers offer EIN as a complimentary service during limited liability company formation or charge a nominal price.
  • No Nonprofit Incorporation Services
    Another drawback of this LLC service is that it doesn't offer formation packages for Non-profit organizations; hence, it is not a suitable service provider for owners of such entities.

Starting an LLC with ZenBusiness: Our In-Depth Experience

Forming an LLC can be a daunting task, but with the right service, it can be a breeze. Venture Smarter decided to take a closer look at ZenBusiness by going through the process ourselves. Here's what we found:

The Initial Filing Process

ZenBusiness offers a systematic five-step filing process. We started by inputting our desired business name and selecting the state for our LLC.

The platform then inquired if we'd like ZenBusiness to act as our registered agent.

This was followed by clearly presenting their package options: Starter, Pro, and Premium. Each package was transparently detailed, aiding our decision-making.

The fourth step showcased additional services, and the final step led to account creation and payment. Impressively, this entire process took us just about 7 minutes.

Post-Filing Experience

After the initial filing, ZenBusiness directed us to a comprehensive dashboard with a "Finish Up Your Formation" tab.

This section guided us through the additional steps, like re-entering our business name, describing our business, and providing operational details.

We also opted for an EIN included in our Pro Package. This post-filing phase took roughly 10–12 minutes.

Documentation and Support

Within four days, we were informed that the Secretary of State approved our LLC.

Shortly after, we received a New Business Kit.

This included a warm "Hello CEO" greeting, a celebratory confetti cannon, and a folder with all essential documents, such as the Articles of Organization and the SS4 form with our EIN.

After going through the process with ZenBusiness, we genuinely liked how easy they made everything.

Their dashboard was clear and kept us in the loop, and access to many helpful resources was another plus.

What really stood out to us was that they only started billing for their registered agent services after our LLC was all set up. It felt like they were really looking out for us.

Who Should Hire ZenBusiness?

A man and a woman shaking hands and agreeing with each other

Business owners who want an affordable way to file their LLC with an annual report service should hire ZenBusiness.

The starter package is ideal if you don’t mind taking time for other necessities like filing for an employer identification number.

The Pro package is suitable for new business owners who want all the services they need to get their new venture up and running.

The Premium package is ideal for the completely stress-free LLC service, so you can focus on building your business entity.

ZenBusiness Customer Testimonials

“Very responsive, very helpful, chat is really efficient without too much robotic interference. Flexible options for small businesses and for my first business ever, a sense of support and, why not, pride!”
- Theo K, Better Business Bureau

“Zen business actually cares about the customer. As soon as I hired ZenBusiness, they took care of everything and always called and emailed me about every process.”
- Jason H, Better Business Bureau

“I had an awesome experience with Zen Business starting an LLC. From start to finish, the process was straightforward and took less than an hour to complete.”
- Heather Mott, Trustpilot

“The team at ZenBusiness was amazing.They made sure that I had the things I needed to start. The only reason I am not giving an excellent review now is because of my state filing fees, with their fees, are a lot.”
- Loria Davis, Trustpilot

“My experience with ZenBusiness was great. They help you step by step in forming your business, and if you're unsure about something, you can always talk to someone to help you out.”
- Don, Trustpilot

ZenBusiness Alternatives

Here’s how ZenBusiness compares to some of its best-known competitors.

1. Northwest Registered Agent

Northwest Registered Agent Service logo with a businessman signing paperwork in the background

Northwest Registered Agent and ZenBusiness have several aspects in common, including affordability, positive customer feedback, great features, excellent customer support, and fast turnaround time.

However, there are some large differences between these two services.

ZenBusiness’s packages are relatively seamless, while Northwest’s onboarding can be overwhelming for a new business owner.

While both companies offer free registered agent services for a year, ZenBusiness has a lower renewal cost for their registered agent service. ZenBusiness also has more express options than Northwest to process your order faster.

2. Bizee

Bizee and ZenBusiness both have low-price services, and both generally have positive reviews. There are some vast differences between these two companies, however.

ZenBusiness offers a money-back guarantee, while Bizee (formerly Incfile) only offers a refund minus the $30 cancellation fee.

With Bizee, if you want extra features besides the essential LLC formation services, you will have to pay for them individually.

While it depends on the state you are filing in, ZenBusiness typically has a faster turnaround time than Bizee.

ZenBusiness also has more responsive customer support than Bizee.

3. Rocket Lawyer

Rocketlawyer logo with an office person in the background

Although both Rocket Lawyer and ZenBusiness have excellent reputations for service and business history, there are a few notable differences between these companies.

Although Rocket Lawyer is among the best online platforms currently available, the company does not offer service packages, which actually become more expensive than ZenBusiness.

ZenBusiness offers three separate packages that can be customized at a lower cost. The overall process to form an LLC with ZenBusiness is quicker and more streamlined than with Rocket Lawyer.

Also, with ZenBusiness’s LLC formation packages, you get free registered agent service for a year, and you must pay for Rocket Lawyer's service separately. Overall, ZenBusiness has a better value and offers more services for the cost of the package.

Related articles:

FAQs

Is ZenBusiness Worth Using?

Yes, ZenBusiness is worth using, because their feature-rich packages work with almost any budget, and their ordering process is simple and straightforward. ZenBusiness is one of the best LLC services for any business.

Does ZenBusiness Help With Taxes?

Yes, ZenBusiness helps with taxes through ZenBusines Money, which simplifies business finances, allows you to track deductions, and enables you to save money for tax time [2].

How Long Does ZenBusiness Take To Process Your LLC?

ZenBusiness takes about 4 to 6 business days to process your LLC with expedited filing and 1 to 2 business days with rush filing.

Our Verdict on ZenBusiness

Forming a new business entity can be overwhelming if you don’t have any experience with the business formation process. Hiring a business formation company can give you support throughout the process.

After carefully reviewing their features and other essential services, we’ve concluded that ZenBusiness has a streamlined process with excellent support services for your limited liability company.

Their outstanding features, like annual report service, worry-free compliance, registered agent services, and more, make them stand out from other business formation companies.

Our #1 Recommendation

Zenbusiness

ZenBusiness logo and a young entrepreneur using a laptop in the background
Support
5.0
Price
4.9
Features
5.0
Turnaround
4.9
Overall
5.0
Pros
  • ZenBusiness offers a wide selection of LLC formation packages: Basic, Pro, and Premium.
  • The $0 basic plan features a 1-year compliance service free of charge.
  • Pro and Premium plans are available with expedited options. Applications are processed within 1–5 days.
  • Positive customer reviews and excellent online ratings.
  • Get the BEST PRICE until the end of April
Cons
  • The registered agent service is not included in the formation packages and has to be availed at an additional fee.

References: 

  1. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/how-long-will-it-take-to-get-an-ein
  2. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/limited-liability-company-llc

About The Author

Co-Founder & Chief Editor
Jon Morgan, MBA, LLM, has over ten years of experience growing startups and currently serves as CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Venture Smarter. Educated at UC Davis and Harvard, he offers deeply informed guidance. Beyond work, he enjoys spending time with family, his poodle Sophie, and learning Spanish.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Growth & Transition Advisor
LJ Viveros has 40 years of experience in founding and scaling businesses, including a significant sale to Logitech. He has led Market Solutions LLC since 1999, focusing on strategic transitions for global brands. A graduate of Saint Mary’s College in Communications, LJ is also a distinguished Matsushita Executive alumnus.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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