Data Scraping for Business Intelligence: A Practical Approach

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Data Scraping for Business Intelligence: A Practical Approach

Imagine researching online for some information that you need for your business. This information sits across multiple websites, and each one of these sites has numerous pages. Imagine having to go through these sites, page by page, copy-pasting the information that you need. How exhausting and time-consuming does that sound? 

Fortunately, we have a streamlined method of extracting data from websites and getting it in a format that is easy to understand.

Data Scraping Explained

The process of obtaining internet information automatically is data/web scraping. With a data scraping tool, you can go through multiple websites and obtain the desired information quickly and efficiently. In business, this practice is popular. It provides market information, which is helpful when making business decisions.

Benefits for Your Business

Intelligent business decisions come from information. Where do you get this data? Various websites, of course. Scraping will not only help you acquire this data but also convert it into a format that makes it easier to interpret, such as a spreadsheet.

What kind of data can you extract in this manner? It can be anything from product specifications, prices, statistics, contacts, mentions, reviews, and so on. You can have a web scraper collect all the available data on a page, which you will then sort out according to your needs. Better still, you can specify the data you want, and the scraper will give you just that. Let’s see how you can utilize data scraping to grow your business:

  • Get customer feedback: Do you know what your customers are saying about your brand? You can find out more about this by scraping information from review sites. A tool will scrape any site with your brand mentioned, whether positively or negatively, and present the information to you. This information will help you improve your product as well as customer interactions.
  • Market research: Market trends are evolving rapidly in every sector. You need information to help you determine how best to get your product to your customer. The internet is rich with data. Use it to glean consumer behavior, product reviews, competitor strategies, industry trends, and so on. A data scraping tool collects and presents information in a neat spreadsheet. Therefore, it will be easier to make informed decisions for your business.
  • Competitor analysis: How do you stay ahead of the competition? Begin by arming yourself with information about their prices, products, offers, adverts, and more. Rival websites have a lot of data you can scrape to track opposing strategies. Use your newly obtained information to adjust your approaches accordingly to remain competitive.
  • Generating leads: Attracting potential customers starts with identifying your target market. Once you identify the people who are most likely to pay for your product, you can then use a web scraping tool to find them. The scraper will go through social media and websites and extract the information of a whole bunch of people, such as gender, age, location, occupation, and literacy levels. From here, you can build a targeted database and stand a higher chance of turning people into paying customers.

Is This Practice Legal?

To put it simply, data scraping is not illegal. Remember, the information obtained here is publicly accessible. How do you know that anyone can view this data freely? Such websites do not require users to register or log in. You can browse without submitting any personal details.

Web scraping tools only enable you to obtain large amounts of such data swiftly. The goal here is not to access confidential information but that which is readily available to the public. In this way, this practice does not break any laws.

There have been lawsuits surrounding web scraping, particularly when people use tools to obtain personal information, which they then sell to third parties. These are isolated cases, though; data scraping, when correctly used, serves to boost businesses.

Conclusion

If you’ve not been scraping data, you can see what you’ve been missing out on. One common challenge with this practice is that some websites block IPs that have been scraping lots of data. Fortunately, we have a way around this: proxies.

Proxies offer you an alternative IP to avoid detection. With a legitimate proxy provider such as MarsProxies, you can scrape high volumes of data from any site. You can also make use of rotating IPs, which shift every so often, making your online activities difficult to detect.

If you’re not sure what type of proxies you need for your business, a support team will be a message away to guide you on your search for a fast, efficient, and cost-effective proxy fit just for you.





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