What Is Web Scraping Used for?

Confused why everyone is using web scraping nowadays? Reading this article might clear things up for you!

Web scraping (also referred to as web crawling or data mining) can serve countless purposes, from data analysis to academic research and even machine learning. However, it’s primarily used in business for market analysis, brand protection, lead generation, etc.

Most Common Uses of Web Scraping

Gathering data from the internet, formatting it in a helpful way, and storing it locally or in the cloud is what web scraping is all about. No matter the size of your enterprise, web scraping can help you get to the next level, expand to new markets, boost sales, and grow. Here are a few most common usage scenarios.

Lead Generation

Lead generation illustration

A lot of modern businesses utilize data scraping to help generate high-quality leads. Traditional methods like purchasing lists and lead generation tools are outdated, inaccurate, and often expensive. Web scraping allows companies to customize their lead generation for the best results. Gathering information like email addresses and phone numbers from websites where your potential customers gather can significantly boost your cold outreach.

Market Research and Monitoring

The digital retail landscape has changed tremendously in recent years and will continue to grow as our purchasing behaviors shift more and more towards online retailers. Web scraping provides businesses with a full overview of the market with product information, insights into ad campaigns and budgets, social media channels, etc. This helps develop effective marketing strategies, respond to new products, analyze customer feedback, and detect new trends.

Data gathering is also a crucial tool for businesses that wish to expand into new markets. Companies can use it to learn about the competition, economic activity, and trends in specific locations.

This data can help figure out what’s the best place to offer their goods and services.

It’s important to note that most competitors offer different pricing in different regions, along with ways to prevent data mining. The most efficient way to deal with all these issues is by hiring a reliable proxy service like IP Royal. With a global pool of IP addresses worldwide, you can target any continent, country, or even city for the most accurate data.

Pricing Insights and Optimization

Single dollar bill

Keeping a competitive pricing strategy helps a business balance the point where the profits grow without losing customers. Web scraping offers valuable insights into customer information, which helps improve satisfaction by optimizing market strategy. It’s also crucial for dynamic pricing strategies. The market never sleeps, so pricing has to keep up with the changes. Keeping tabs on these changes helps businesses plan promotion events and discounts with the best results.

Customer Satisfaction and Product Optimization

Maintaining a satisfied customer base helps maintain your brand image and boosts sales as people are more likely to deal with brands they know and trust. We all check online reviews before making a purchase, and they have a significant impact on our decisions.

Knowing what the customers have to say helps businesses improve their products and introduce new ones. Instead of manually checking countless sale points, web scraping gathers all this data and structures it in a way that is easy to understand and use.

Investment Planning

Calculator and investment report

The financial world was among the first to recognize the value data scraping brings to the table. Hedge funds often use it to gather and analyze data which helps significantly reduce the risk of bad decisions. Aside from avoiding risk, data mining also helps find new potential investment opportunities via historical data analysis.

Web scraping can gather historical data a lot faster than doing it manually. Large investment firms can create databases and feed this data to their machine learning algorithms for model training to improve accuracy and inform investment decision-making.

Final Thoughts

These scenarios are just a fragment of what web scraping can do. Either way, the power of gathering data like this is not to be underestimated. Creating your web scraping setup is fairly simple. If your appetites are modest, you can build your custom crawler or use a simple browser extension for some basic tasks. However, if you need to gather massive amounts of data on a regular basis, going with a highly customizable solution will ensure your scraping efforts are efficient, accurate, and reliable.

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Published on July 22, 2021 by Peter Hughes; modified on September 28, 2023. Filed under: , , .

Peter Hughes is a digital marketing consultant and author. Peter has more than 10 years of experience in SEO and Internet marketing.

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