Review Process

Part of what we do at Backyard Workshop is 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 own areas of expertise, but we all have a decent background in each product category.

Here are the types of reviews you’ll see on Backyard Workshop:

Product Category Reviews

These are the most common reviews you’ll see. It’s hard to know which products are the best in a category. For example, if you’re looking for a hedge trimmer, how do you know which one is the best for you?

It’s hard to answer this question by reading manufacturer websites, because they all have an incentive to promote their product as the best. It’s also hard to cobble together information from Amazon reviews or forums, because they’re all over the place and you don’t know how reliable they are.

Our goal is for you to get the following out of these reviews:

  • What you need to know about the product category in general to make an informed decision, and
  • The absolute best products you can buy in that category in our reviewer’s opinion.

Because products are updated yearly, we want you to know how fresh our product category reviews are.  We will provide an updated date in the article.  Our goal is to make sure reviews are up-to-date by the beginning 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. A good example is the review of the SnowJoe 13″ snow shovel.  Rarely, we may be given products by a company (we have not had this happen yet, fyi).

If this is the case, you will always see us mention it in the post.  We do 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 obviously poorly made or designed items so we try to filter out these products before we get to the writing stage.  Companies that do donate their products are made aware of this before agreeing to the terms.

Brand Reviews

The last type of review we will provide is a profile of a brand. A good example is my review Snow Joe Brand Blowers, a brand dedicated to electric snowblowers.

In these reviews I am to give you some background on a company, the products they produce, and what (if anything) separates them from the other competitors in their industry.  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.

Final Thoughts

If it ever happens that I have received an item for free from a manufacturer, you will see this line at the bottom of the review (usually boxed):

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. I try to combat this in a few ways:

  1. If we don’t feel like a product is even worth reviewing, we’ll often refuse a manufacturer’s request to send their product.
  2. We never accept money in exchange for a positive review.
  3. 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.

However, if you personally believe that receiving free gear will bias our reviews no matter what…well, we respect your opinion.

As Backyard Workshop grows, it is our goal to eventually be able to purchase, use, and review all of the gear that we use. But right now, it’s simply too expensive to do this, so from time to time we may accept offers of free gear.

If it bothers you that we take review products, then please feel free to Google around for other reviews and opinions. It may take some searching (which is part of the reason we began reviewing gardening and workshop products in the first place), but eventually you’ll be able to find what you’re looking for.

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:

PARTICIPATION

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 WalMart and 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

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