If you’re forming a new LLC or corporation, it’s important that you acquire all necessary licenses and permits before you start transacting business.
If you don’t, you could run the risk of operating your business in a non-compliant manner, leaving you open to fines, fees, and other penalties.
Some states require all businesses operating within their borders to acquire general business licenses. Even if your state doesn’t require a general license, it’s quite likely you’ll need to obtain at least one license. After all, many industries require some sort of licensing, and your county or municipality may have licensing requirements of their own.
As you might imagine, hunting down all of the business licenses you need from federal, state, county, and municipal government entities can be a significant hassle. Thankfully, there are plenty of reputable business services companies offering affordable business license services.
These companies won’t acquire the licenses on your behalf, but they will find out which licenses and permits your business needs. They will then obtain the applications for these licenses and send them to you, along with instructions on how to fill them out and where to submit them.
There are quite a few companies offering business license services these days, so we dug into the details of each one to determine the five best options available online. All of these companies have nearly identical price points and offer extremely similar services as well, making the decision even tougher. Which one is the right choice for your business?
ZenBusiness truly excels in the area of customer satisfaction, as the vast majority of its 10,000+ online customer reviews are positive in nature.
ZenBusiness prioritizes giving back to the communities we serve. We lend money to women- and minority-owned businesses, helping give them a leg up on the competition. In addition, ZenBusiness has a partnership with Kiva.org that aims to lift entrepreneurs out of poverty through financial lending.
If you also need to form your LLC or corporation, ZenBusiness has a free package that only requires you to pay your state’s fee. If you want advanced features, our premium packages include ongoing compliance assistance and much more. Overall, ZenBusiness is an outstanding company in many regards and an excellent choice to provide business license services to your company.
Incfile has more than 30,000 reviews online and just a small handful of critical feedback. Incfile has plenty of experience too, as they’ve been around since 2004 and have formed more than 500,000 businesses since then.
Incfile offers the same great price point as ZenBusiness for business formations, as they’re another company that forms LLCs and corporations for free! All you have to pay is your state’s fee.
The one downside of Incfile is that all of this affordability comes with a downside in the form of their occasionally uninspired customer support. Incfile used to offer great support but in recent years that has changed, as their response times have stretched out significantly. Sometimes, they don’t respond to emails at all!
LegalZoom is the biggest name in this industry, with millions of customers served and a seemingly endless advertising budget. This company has a ton of experience, and customers appreciate its extended customer support hours that enable you to contact them before your workday begins, or after it’s over.
LegalZoom has a solid reputation for customer feedback, with thousands of positive reviews available online. They didn’t always get positive customer reviews, so LegalZoom’s about-face in this area is a welcome plus, as they have clearly listened to their customers and addressed any widespread issues they once had.
We really appreciate LegalZoom’s 100% satisfaction guarantee as well, as it’s nearly identical to the ZenBusiness refund policy. For many services, LegalZoom charges high prices that make them a less appealing option than many competitors. However, their pricing for business license service is quite competitive and they’re a strong contender for your business.
Swyft Filings has a similar money-back guarantee to ZenBusiness and LegalZoom, and they have a strong customer feedback reputation. We found more than 40,000 reviews for Swyft Filings online, and nearly all of them were positive.
Compared to some competitors, Swyft Filings doesn’t have many valuable features in its business formation packages, but that’s not an issue for business license service. Swyft Filings is another good option for business licensing.
MyCompanyWorks is a smaller company with about 60,000 businesses served. If you prefer using midsized businesses, they’re a company well worth a look. MyCompanyWorks is another company that receives positive customer feedback, with nearly 4,000 online reviews and high average rating scores.
One nice attribute of using a smaller service like MyCompanyWorks is the responsiveness of their customer support. While many competitors make you wait for a long time to hear back from them, MyCompanyWorks responds to most calls and emails within just 20 minutes, meaning you can get your questions answered and get on with your busy day.
We’ll reiterate that not only do these companies all have the same price point (or, in LegalZoom’s case, within a dollar of the others) but all five also have nearly identical services for business licensing.
This makes it even harder to choose a company than it is for many other business services, and makes elements like customer reviews even more vital. These companies are all capable of finding the business licenses you need, so choose the one that feels right to you!
Disclaimer: The content on this page is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.
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