The internet is a large information hub. Before the age of the internet, it was tiresome and almost impossible to find and gather information. But now we can simply open a browser and do a simple web search.
However, imagine huge companies that need to collect vast amounts of data daily to make strategic decisions based on data. Collecting and gathering data manually would take a lot of time and require many resources. This is where web scraping comes in. It made it easier for businesses to collect vast amounts of public data from numerous websites.
What is web scraping?
Web scraping is an automated data collection process performed by specific scraping bots. It makes it possible to get non-tabular or unstructured public information from various web pages and convert them into an orderly and usable format, such as .csv files or spreadsheets. Web scraping is closely associated with web indexing but is different in a sense that it targets specified data on visited pages.
For instance, online stores sometimes browse through the publicly available pages of their competitors, scrape cost prices, and then use the information to fix their prices.
Web scraping has many benefits for businesses because most websites contain vast amounts of public crucial data. It helps businesses understand their clients, competitors, as well as market conditions more. Various companies can make major decisions, developing effective pricing and marketing strategies based on accurate data. Web scraping can also be used to gather public information to perform surveys and analysis.
Benefits of web scraping for businesses:
Let’s take a look at each of the most common use cases of web scraping and what are the benefits for businesses.
1- Web scraping job postings
One of its most common use cases is web scraping job postings. Numerous companies collect public job postings information to survey the market, find potential job candidates, and many more. It's important to note that one should only use web scraping to scrape and collect information that is publicly available; scraping internal databases of job postings may be deemed illegal. If you are interested in web scraping job postings, we suggest you click here for more information.
2- Lead generation
Web scraping makes it easier and faster to develop more leads for businesses. It makes it possible to get the contact info of your potential clients and or influencers from social media platforms and websites. You will need to identify the necessary attributes, such as location, age, occupation, etc. The web scraper will then use these criteria to collate the needed data from the specific website.
3- Price scraping
Price scraping is an integral part of every successful business. It helps you to collect pricing data and generate efficient pricing strategies to attract customers. Collecting real-time pricing information from commercial websites helps to ensure that your sale prices are updated and current. Price scraping data also gives a better understanding of market forces. You can increase or lower your selling prices without compromising your customer base.
4- Understanding your customers
Happy customers are the bread and butter of a successful business. It is not possible to capture the attention of your target market without first understanding and satisfying their needs. Web scraping customer reviews on review sites as well as social media platforms will give you more information about their demands. With this information, you can generate ideas and manufacture products to meet the needs of your customers, win their loyalty, and improve any weak points.
5- Monitoring competition
While it's always good to understand your customers, it is most times not enough. You need to be thoroughly informed about your competitors to avoid becoming side-lined. That includes their prices, marketing strategies, etc. Web scraping helps to collate vital information from competitor websites. You can evaluate their customer reviews on their goods and services and use the info to enhance your products. You can learn from their mistakes and exploit their weaknesses to your advantage.
6- Keyword research
With how easy, it is for businesses to enter e-commerce, search engine optimization makes sure that your web page is the first page that potential clients see on their search engine result page. It increases the traffic on your website and your conversion rate. Web scraping helps you to get the appropriate keywords from search engines as well as the websites of your competitor's SEO.
Modern marketing would be practically impossible without web scraping. It makes businesses more productive and enhances consumer satisfaction.