Our Guiding Principles
- Our mission is to help you find the best tool for your job – period. That means we will recommend the best products – EVEN IF WE MAKE NOTHING FROM THE SALE. When our team creates their reviews, they do so without being instructed to make sure the product is available online. That means occasionally you’ll find the link from our analysis is to a search engine such as Google – because there’s no online retailer that carries the product. But if our experts feel a product is worth the inconvenience of driving to a store to buy, we want you to know that information. (This is less of an issue now than it was last decade – but it does still occur).
- All our professional experts are instructed to write as if they were advising their parents or grandparents with their particular problem. Following this guideline – in writing and life – keeps you out of trouble 95% of the time.
Part of what we do at Backyard Workshop is to review products that we use to tame our own home’s yard. We do this to help other homeowners make good buying decisions. We have used and abused a lot of products and have a good idea of what can work for a situation. Each reviewer has their areas of expertise, but we all have a decent background in each product category.
Here are styles of reviews you’ll see on Backyard Workshop:
Product Category Reviews
We concentrate on these reviews the most. Why? Knowing the best product in a category is tough. For example, if you’re looking for a hedge trimmer, how do you know which one is the choice you’ll be happy owning for years?
Manufacturer websites aren’t very helpful, because they are generally highly promotional. It’s also hard to gather the right data from Quora, forums, or Amazon reviews. This data is scattered all over the place, and you don’t know how real the poster is. There’s a whole industry focused on goosing Amazon ratings!
We will be happy if we achieve these goals:
- You learn what you need to know about the product category in general to make a wise decision, and
- We recommend the best products you can buy in that category in our reviewer’s opinion.
Because products are updated (at least) yearly, our category reviews are fresh. We provide the date each article is updated at the beginning so you can tell right away. Our goal is to make sure reviews are up-to-date by the start of the season, but you can always check the updated date to be sure.
Single Product Reviews
Every now and then, we write reviews on single products. While we haven’t had this happen yet, we may be given products by a company.
If this is the case, you will always see us mention it in the post. We will not promise companies a good review. We do promise to review their product fairly, which can mean we won’t recommend the product to you the reader. Frankly, we’d rather not waste our energy reviewing poorly made or designed items, so we try to filter out these products before we get to the writing stage. Companies that decide to donate their products are made aware of this before agreeing to the terms.
The last type of review we will provide is a profile of a brand’s offering in a product. We know some people are brand loyal above all else, and we want to save you time. Examples of this include the Worx weed eaters, or Black+Decker leaf blower articles.
In these reviews, we aim to give you some information on a brand. We will highlight what history makes them special (if there is anything that makes them special!) We will then work through their product offerings to help you decide what products they offer that are best suited to your needs.
Some of our brand reviews might be from unknown (to you) companies. We do this to allow you to see what is available in the market. Some brands are less well-known than others so we’d like to provide you with a service that other websites might not think is worthy.
While it hasn’t occurred yet – if it ever happens that we receive an item for free from a manufacturer, you will see this line at the top of the review:
Full Disclosure: [Company] provided this product to Backyard Workshop to use and evaluate for review purposes. See the review process here.
Of course, it is possible that receiving outdoor tools for free has the potential to unconsciously influence the way that we review products. We try to combat this in a few ways:
- If we don’t feel like a product is even worth reviewing, we’ll refuse a manufacturer’s request to send their product. No need to waste everyone’s time.
- Positive reviews are not for sale – money or other incentives don’t sway our recommendations.
- We try our best to be impartial and review the product in an as unbiased way as possible. We want to match you with the best product for your situation – unhappy readers do not do anyone any good.
That said – if this bothers you – you’ll know that article has a free product. We respect your opinion. That’s why we are big on transparency.
As Backyard Workshop grows, it is our goal to eventually be able to purchase, use, and review all of the gear that we use. As we grow, we may accept offers of free equipment. We will let you know if this happens by a promonent disclaimer in the article.
In the meantime, please let me know if you have any questions by contacting me at bryan [at] backyardworkshop [dot] com.
Amazon and Other Affiliate Disclaimers:
Backyard Workshop is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. We also participate in other affiliate programs (such as Home Depot) where we earn a fee when you purchase a product through our links. Your cost does not increase by using our links.
PRICING AND AVAILABILITY
Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
CERTAIN CONTENT THAT APPEARS ON THIS SITE COMES FROM AMAZON SERVICES LLC. THIS CONTENT IS PROVIDED ‘AS IS’ AND IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE OR REMOVAL AT ANY TIME.
Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Home Depot and the Home Depot logo are trademarks of Home Depot, Inc. or its affiliates.