Web scraping should not only be limited to big businesses. As a small business, there are many web scraping solutions you can use to get things done. In this article, we will teach you some of the things you have to consider when choosing a web scraping solution. At the end of this article, you will learn how web scraping can help your business.
What Is Web Scraping?
Simply put, web scraping is the process of crawling through websites to scrape and retrieve data. The data scraped can be downloaded in different formats such as Excel, CSV, JSON, HTML, txt, and so on. A lot goes on during the entire process but at the end of it all, you should have clean and structured data in your hands.
Some businesses prefer to go through the traditional route of scraping with python. Some just prefer to use a web scraping tool where no coding experience is needed. Each method has its pros and cons but for a small business, a few things must be considered when looking for the best web scraping solution.
What Small Businesses Need When in Search of Web Scraping Solutions
1. Low Budget
Unlike the big players, you don’t have the big budget to hire a team of coders to write codes for you. Setting up a web scraping team for your business would cost you a lot of money. As a growing business, there are other aspects of your business you must invest heavily in. A huge part of your budget shouldn’t go into web scraping. In other words, your choice of web scraping solution must be within an appropriate budget.
Instead of hiring a whole web scraping team, you can consider using a web scraping tool and with it, you can build a non-coder team for the same web scraping jobs. The pricing varies depending on what you need.
2. High Efficiency
As a small business, not all web scraping solutions are for you. Even if you want to reduce the cost to the barest minimum, you should never compromise on the efficiency of your web scraping solution.
Some small businesses, in a bid to minimize the cost, hire an inexperienced freelancer for all their web scraping tasks. This strategy can be counterproductive because they are at risk of getting inaccurate data. We also have users complaining about how their data provider is missing important data.
The truth is, you can get the best web scraping solutions without spending a fortune. A powerful web scraping tool like Octoparse can help you get unique data at a high speed. And with supportive customer service, you can learn more about web scraping along with the tasks, which could be the real engine of efficiency for your business as it grows.
How Web Scraping Can Help
There are several ways web scraping can help with your business. From product optimization, price analysis to lead generation, web scraping can improve your business in more ways than you would have expected.
In case you were wondering how this can help, here are four examples of how web scraping can help your business.
1. Product Optimization
Have you ever listened to your users? To grow your business, you need to know what people are saying about your product and services. Once you know and understand your customers’ perception of your product, you will be able to serve them better.
To properly gage your customers’ perceptions and opinions about your products, you need to scrape data from the web. With the data obtained from review websites like Quora and Yelp, or on eCommerce marketplaces, you can get an idea of what your strengths and weaknesses are and how you can improve.
2. Pricing analysis
Pricing is the most important element when a business wants to increase its sales. For an eCommerce business, you should initiate a price research before you start selling a product.
With a web scraper, you can scrape the price data of a product from different sellers on an eCommerce website like Amazon. When you have an overview of the price, you can select a product with the best profit margin and sell at a competitive price that will drive more people to buy from you.
3. Improve online presence with SEO
To get found on the internet, you need to do SEO. For many small businesses, SEO is becoming more and more difficult. Getting the right keywords for content can be a bit challenging for some people. Thankfully, web scraping makes SEO easier for digital marketers. With web scraping, you can scrape high-ranking websites yourself to see words in their content that help them rank high.
This is just the tip of the iceberg of what you can do with web scraping in regard to SEO, there are still many more actionable hacks you can implement to improve your website ranking.
4. Lead Generation
Not every business gets well fed on giant deals. Most of us need more leads to expand our business. You can barely get quality leads by buying a name list. This is now regarded as outdated and you can do better than that – get prospects from a specific niche where you are in. If you have a business in the health sector, you should gather quality leads by scraping contact information from health forums and open-source medical websites. With the information you get, you can send out campaigns and newsletters to an audience that most likely needs what you are offering.
To learn more about lead generation with web scraping, this is a great article to start with.
Every small business faces financial limitations. The key is to never let it stop you from competing with industry leaders. Find a solution that is within your reach and capable of getting you further. If you agree on the value of data, Octoparse is the right pick. Web scraping tools like Octoparse helps make things easier for you.