November 18, 2020

Web Scraping - a structured approach to evolving your business

With its limitless amount of information, the internet is a highly useful tool that you can use to create and develop your business. However, the successful extraction of useful information from any website is not an easy task whatsoever. In most cases, you have to use the copy-paste method or download your files in a specific format imposed by the website of your choosing.        

Web Scraping helps to simplify the extraction of important information from said resources. Besides, it transforms your data through syntactic conversion to more user-friendly formats.

Parsers are used for accurate and inexpensive extraction of structured information clusters to a local file. Most websites contain an enormous amount of useful data in their HTML and XHTML codes. Still, this data format is not suitable for using it on any local resources.

Thus, Web scraping automates and simplifies the process of accumulating data.


How do web scrapers work?

Web scraping gathers and accumulates information and transforms it into a digital spreadsheet. The process itself is done automatically by activating the code that sends GET requests to the required site. A dedicated algorithm goes to the main page, follows the internal links, and collects the specified divs' content. Eventually, you will receive a CSV file that contains the meticulously categorized data you need.

Web scraping software uses the hypertext transmission protocol to access a specific site or opens pages of interest in a web browser. More advanced web scraping tools can render the entire website, including CSS and Javascript elements. The parser then extracts all data selected by the user in a CSV or Excel file. Also, some parsers can export data in JSON or XML formats that can be used for APIs.


Some advanced options can be added to ready-made parsers, such as scheduling cleaning, JSON export, etc. The creation of a custom web parser requires a sufficient level of expertise in programming. The more functions you want to include in your parser, the more knowledgeable you have to be.

Also, you can use the browser's plugins, applications, or cloud-based services like DaaS. Some extensions include interface themes, ad blockers, messengers, etc. They are easy to use, and you can install them without any complications. However, their functions are limited if used outside your web browser. 

The user interface is different for each program. Some of these utilities can only be interacted with through a minimalistic interface and a command-line input. Others can have a user-friendly interface that can display an entire website. 

Local parsers will heavily depend on your CPU and RAM performance, making your computer considerably slower. Besides, if your parser is set to work with an immense number of URLs, it can trigger the limitations that were set by your internet provider. 

Cloud-based parsers work on the external server. Due to this reason, you can freely use your PC while the parser is gathering data. You will receive a notification when your scrape is ready for export.


Benefits of web scraping

After you get the information you want, you can use it how you see fit. It is the key benefit of using any web parser.

Parsers can be used for web indexing, mining, and in-depth data analysis. They are useful for online monitoring and comparing prices, observing competitors, and other business-related purposes.

Every website is a rich source of information, so many successful companies worldwide (Amazon, Walmart, etc.) collect and analyze it to make effective marketing decisions.

Web scraping projects are used for gathering data about the global financial and the stock market and trading. This process is crucial for the creation of a successful economic model. The data collected from e-commerce websites have a wide variety of practical uses. You can develop the most effective marketing strategy and decide how it will be integrated into your business model by analyzing it. Moreover, you can change your pricing policy according to your target audience's feedback. Therefore, it will simplify your work with leads and make your CRM system more effective.

Conclusion

The success of a business is dependent on the accuracy of the information. It is critical to have unrestricted access to the most up-to-date data. It provides the basis for effective decision-making. Thus, the usage of web parsing gives you a significant competitive advantage.

If you want to implement this software into your business model successfully, we strongly advise you to leave it to the professional web scraping services. Contact Axisbits to get the most useful data and improve business processes using it so that you are always one step ahead of your competitors!

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