User experience & onboarding
Onboarding for Northwest is more cumbersome than other products in the industry. Avoiding the simplified chat flows, ubiquitous of Silicon Valley SaaS, Northwest makes you comb through an exhaustive list of services that at first glance can be intimidating. The plus side of their onboarding is Northwest makes it very easy to open a free account without being charged for a service, so at least you won't be paying any money up front while you figure out exactly the product you need.
CorpNet's initial onboarding flow is extremely straight forward - additional information is placed below the fold, but within a few clicks you are picking between 3 basic packages for your business formation. In standard 'Good, Better, Best' format, the selection of product is made extremely easy via transparent pricing and feature comparison.
Both Northwest and CorpNet provide a custom onboarding flow, yet in very different capacities. Northwest provides a whole menu of options for the seasoned entrepreneur who knows all the jargon related to regulatory business compliance and already knows the products they need. CorpNet, on the other hand, prefers a simplified 3-package approach, with additional check-boxes providing confined customizable ability to solopreneurs.
Northwest is in an elite tier of business formation services when it comes to processing times, with a turnaround time of one business day, and in some instances for particular states, same day processing. CorpNet, unfortunately, has some of the slowest formation speeds in the industry, taking between thirty and forty business days to process the paperwork, although they can do it faster for an additional fee.
Northwest's one business day processing time has become the gold-standard for business formation. With state processing times varying, the industry has adopted a mentality of processing applicants as swiftly as possible to help them form businesses quickly. Northwest's standardization of the application flow, while restrictive to unique circumstances, helps them achieve this speed in processing times.
CorpNet's thirty to forty business day processing time is extremely high for formation services. It appears that they have not kept up with the industry which has tended towards swift processing times (knowing that there are additional state processing times after the formation service completes their portion)
Are they worth the cost?
Northwest is more focused on established SMB and Bootstrapped Startups given its messaging heavily leans on the Registered Agent angle. This positioning towards an industry term assumes a certain level of knowledge from the prospect, rather than guiding first-time founders or solopreneurs through a flow of starting their business and all the services they may require. In that respect, Northwest is more direct - displaying clearly the service they provide and how they do it well for Businesses.
Solopreneurs are the explicit target of CorpNet in both their messaging and imagery. Social proof from the publications of choice for Entrepreneurs (Inc and Forbes) abounds and they focus on making the process simple for individuals looking to start a business. Consultations are also offered to help walk prospective entrepreneurs through the complexity of business formation and ongoing compliance.
NanoGlobals editor's rating for Northwest reflects its standing as a solid middle of the pack option for business formation. Their lightning fast processing times have become the mark to which other services must match and their pricing is fair compared to the high-end. Points are deducted for their slightly confusing onboarding flow which creates a high propensity to choose non-applicable products. If you know exactly what service you need for your business, Northwest can be a great option but if you're at all unsure, Northwest isn't likely to make it easy to find the product right for you.
The CorpNet rating by our NanoGlobals editorial team represents that they are a solid option, but that there are significantly better options on the market. Their ongoing pricing is fairly transparent and cost-effective compared to the market. CorpNet's onboarding flow is one of the easiest to follow but that's offset by initial packages that are on the mid-high end of the market. CorpNet loses substantial points for its exorbitantly long processing times, falling behind the contemporary industry norm of 1-3 business days.