Data Insight: What is Web Scraping and Why You Should Learn It?
Monday, August 27, 2018
What Is Web Scraping?
It is the process of extracting information and data from a website, transforming the information on a webpage into structured data for further analysis. Web scraping is also known as web harvesting or web data extraction. With the overwhelming data available on the internet, web scraping has become the essential approach to aggregating Big Data sets.
So, why should you learn web scraping and who is doing web scraping out there? We are going to address this question by looking into the different industries and jobs that require web scraping skills. To do this, we've compiled and analyzed the data extracted from job sites, including Indeed, Glassdoor, and LinkedIn. At last, we also explored web scraping jobs in Google and YouTube, to find out how many jobs requiring web scraping skills and what are the other requirements besides web scraping.
Followings are our findings to share with you. You might be just as surprised as I was. If you are interested in the scraping process, you may want to check our GitHub Repositories to download the crawlers, running at Octoparse FREE APP and get the data you want.
Finding 1: 54 Industries Are Requiring Web Scraping Skill
The statistics below are based on the information collected from LinkedIn. The top 10 industries that have the highest demand for web scraping skills are: Computer Software (22%); Information Technology and Services (21%); Financial Services (12%); Internet (11%); Marketing and Advertising (5%); Computer & Network Security (3%); Insurance (2%); Banking (2%); Management Consulting (2%); Online Media(2%).
The other industries include Oil & Energy; Construction; Consumer Goods; Defense & Space; Staffing and Recruiting; Hospital & Health Care; Education Management; Nonprofit Organization Management; Pharmaceuticals; Publishing; Research; Electrical/Electronic Manufacturing; Government Administration…etc.
Finding 2: Non-tech Jobs Are Requiring Web Scraping Skill
This is also based on the information on LinkedIn. There is no doubt that the most jobs requiring web scraping are tech-relevant ones, like Engineering, and Information Technology.
There are, however, surprisingly many other kinds of works also require web scraping skills such as human resources, marketing, business development, research, sales and consulting, writing/editing.
Finding 3: Top 10 Best-Paying Jobs
Based on the information aggregated from Glassdoor, there is a big difference in salaries for various jobs, from $25K to $203K. Among all the jobs, senior data engineer and data scientist are the best paying jobs.
（Data based on Glassdoor's estimate of the base salary range for the job, which is not necessarily endorsed by the employer. ）
Among all the jobs information we collected, the least paying jobs are: Political Reporter and Junior Recruiter, which is starting from $25K and $29K.
Finding 4: Top 10 Best Paying Industries
We also explored the average pay among different industries, based on the same dataset extracted from Glassdoor. Information Technology only ranks No.5 on the list.
Finding 5: Web Scraping in Tech Company (Google as an example)
Before we jump into a conclusion of all the findings, we also extracted all the web scraping related job posts from the tech Giant – Google, since it’s pretty obvious that software and Information Technology Company are the biggest markets for web scraping experts.
YouTube, a subsidiary of Google, is another example of a tech company of different size and service than Google while also requiring a high level of web scraping skills in different job positions.
Unlike Google, in YouTube, the top 5 Job categories requiring web scraping experts are: Marketing & Communication; Software Engineering, Partnerships, Product & Customer Support, and the last, Business Strategy.
In addition to the requirement of knowing web scraping, we also want to find out other requirements on Software Engineer, Sales & Account Management, and Data Scientist in Google. Following are the word clouds about requirements on these two jobs.
Requirements on Software Engineering in Google
Requirements on Sales & Account Management in Google
Requirements on Data Scientist in Google
It is safe to say that web scraping has become an essential skill to acquire in today’s digital world, not only for tech companies and not only for technical positions. On one side, compiling large datasets are fundamental to Big Data analytics, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence; on the other side, with the explosion of digital information, Big Data is becoming much easier to access than ever.
With web scraping automation tool becoming "smarter" and popular, even people with no programming background can easily apply web scraping for aggregating all sorts of data, empowering their business & work with the insights from Big Data.
If you wish to learn about web scraping but does not want to deal with Python or other programming languages, Octoparse| Free automatic web scraper, may be a good option for you to get started.
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