Web Is Web Scraping?

Ever want to see a list of all the items a competitor has in stock along with their prices? There are two main ways to do it. One, you go to one of their product pages, copy an item, go to your spreadsheet, and paste. Then you return to the site, copy the price, and do it again.

What if you could dive into the website's back-end and get this information automatically? What if you could create a program that goes to every page and extracts all the relevant data while you are doing something else?

The challenge is that a lot of these sites know what you are doing, and intentionally mask their data by misnaming parts, items, and even prices. A suitable web scraper not only extrapolates the right information, it digs into the website's code to find out the real prices, item numbers, part numbers, and even inventory levels.

Web scraping can be done weekly, daily, or even several times a day to see the changes in items, prices, and inventory. You can extract valuable information from the Web to produce powerful intelligence for your business.

Decisions come easier when you have the best information.

Data Collection in Multiple Web Sites can Help Customers in Real Time:

See some cases of one of our clients, how data collection helped them in real time to make immediate decisions while they are on the phone:  Web Scraping as Custom software development to Increase Productivity and Profit Margins:

Use a customized web scraping tool to scrape data from any website.

A custom web scarping will grab data from any web site:

 A custom web scarper will grab data from any website. Get started Now!

What you can do with Custom Web Scraping?

Crawling the Web for data can provide you with unpublished information. That gives you an immediate edge over everyone who doesn’t see this data. If other businesses are web scraping and you’re not, they might be outwitting you by looking into your own books.

Web scraping is transformative for a business. Use it to become more productive, provide better customer service, and in a host of other ways that can boost your business from ordinary to extraordinary.

Why Custom Web Scraping Is Popular?

Sites like Facebook, Google, and Twitter have plenty of data to share. But many other websites don't provide APIs, so you need an alternative way to extract the information and put it into a structured format.

Whether the data easy to find or hard to extract from an unstructured HTML page, a custom-made web scraper can take all the data and turn it into a very useful source of business intelligence.

This is why a custom web scraping application is crucial for your business. You can get past the gates and through the mazes of all types of sites to capture their data to enhance your business intelligence.

Why Generic Web Scraping Isn't Enough?

Using a general web scraper to open up multiple websites is like trying to open up different doors using a single key.

To get the intelligence you need, you will have to scrape all your competitors' sites, even popular places like Amazon or eBay. Each site has its way of structuring its data and web pages. Each site has its gates, whether a simple registration or personal access.

Each business classifies its products, prices, and even inventory levels according to its system, and that system is always changing.

You need a custom web scraper that can function as a master key, knowing the specific hurdles of every site and having the right tools to navigate each one. It will also adapt to changes in each hurdle or how each site labels its information.

A custom web scraper can operate from the cloud in the background, so you don't need to use your local computer's system resources. It can also run on your local computer. You can have an easy-to-use user interface (UI) or function programmatically with no user interface (UI).

Whenever you need the latest intelligence, click, and your application extracts it automatically by pulling data from multiple websites, storing it in your local database for easy querying, and creating a knowledge base for your company.

A customized web scraper becomes your one-stop shop for all your data collection and business intelligence needs to increase your profit margin with the latest information about your market.

Contact us if you would like to know more.

Five Ways Businesses Use Web Scraping:

  1. Lead Generation – Gather and instantly store contact details of potential clients. You can collect useful info such as Website URLs, email addresses, phone numbers, and other vital data that can be used for direct marketing. Grab this information from sites like LinkedIn or the Yellow Pages.

  2. Price Comparisons – Keep track of what your competitors are asking for their products in stock. Look for current deals they have and be the first to know when their prices change.

  3. Inventory Levels – Receive an alert when inventory levels of specific items reach a certain level. Know exactly when a product is renamed.

  4. Part Numbers – A company will try to hide information by changing part numbers, making it harder to track their inventory levels. A custom web scraper can see through their smokescreen to put the correct number to the right part, giving you an accurate picture of what’s in your competitors warehouse.

  5. Seeing the Big Picture – Gather information on a specific topic, industry, business sector, demographic, or product by scraping multiple websites simultaneously, storing everything into a database, and aggregating the information to look at the trends, totals, and turns in the general market.

Check this article on How web scraping can help improve your company's bottom line.

Case Study: Put your Entire Market on a Single Screen:

A client is an online retailer of medical supplies. One of their big items are digital blood pressure monitors. Hundreds of companies sell different versions of little machines anyone can buy where they manually take their blood pressure, and a small screen will show them the results.

They want to keep an eye on their top five competitors.

We crawl their site to find the part number each competitor assigns to their blood pressure monitors. Once we have that, we can grab their current price, product description, currency they are offering it in, a URL to the product page, how many they currently have in stock, even a picture of the item.

Sometimes, a competitor will assign multiple part numbers to one item. They can do it to confuse anyone trying to research their information. There are even times they do it, and don’t even realize what they are doing. Our client ends up knowing more about what their competitor has than the competitor itself.

The result is a listing of the status of what your competitors are up to on a single page.

We get this information from multiple sources, depending on what you prefer. We can research the suppliers site, Amazon, eBay, Google, Bing, or any other means.

Keep track of what your competitors are asking for their products in stock. Look for current deals they have and be the first to know when their prices change.

The “see related items” option in the description is where we determine which parts are related to this specific item. It could be batteries, a specific mobile app, even additional arm cuffs that tell you how your competitors support this product, and how you can do it better.

You can refresh this data as often as you like for real time intelligence.

Get Started Building Your Custom Web Scraper Today:

The Farber Consulting Group Inc. can customize a web scraping program to do the web crawling work that meets your brand’s specific needs. Contact us today at 732.536.4765 to learn more!

Additional Services that we Provide:

  • Remote DBA services for MS SQL or MySQL.
  • SQL Consulting.
  • Database optimization.
  • Database design for MySQL or MS SQL.
  • Convert your old desktop App into a web-based solution.
  • Web scraping services.

FAQ - Web Scraping Services:

How does web scraping work?

Say you want to compare the prices of a red bicycle for the top 5 bike retailers in the city. You go to each website, find the page, and where it says “price,” you copy the number and paste it to an Excel sheet.

If you are a supermarket, you might want to do this for all the items you have in inventory. If you are in any eCommerce business, you might want to do this for dozens of other sites.

Web scraping is where the computer does this automatically by finding the web page, grabbing the information from the computer code from the page of the price, and putting all the information in a central location like an Excel sheet, database, or a database that sends reports on a periodic basis.

What is web scraping used for?

Web scraping can take virtually any piece of information you need from any place you want and store it for you.

If you are an auto parts manufacturer, you can scrape all the product pages for all of the parts you offer, along with all the parts your main competitors offer. You can put it in a database and query, at will, any part to compare your price with theirs.

It’s more than that. You can compare inventory levels, product descriptions, customer ratings, customer reviews, even images they post for their customers.

The possibilities are tremendous

How often can I scrape data?

As much as you like. You can check the same data every quarter, month, or week. If you want to track the trends of what’s going on in your industry, you can set up time-series data collection by the day, hour, even minute.

When do I get my data?

As fast as your computer can execute the instruction of the scraper, which can be anywhere from seconds to minutes.

What can I do with it?

At Farber Consulting Group, we offer end to end database development and optimization services. We can provide a database to store the data, organize the data, and communicate with your application layer.

We also develop applications, which will alert you to anything important. If your competitor’s price for specific items have changed since yesterday, you will be alerted. If you are the only one who has something in stock, you will know.

If you are suddenly the best price on the market, your competitor gets a series of bad reviews, or a lot of people start mentioning a specific product, you will have that information immediately.

I am not a web scraping developer. Will it be harder to collect data?

Not when it’s a custom web scraping tool. You tell us what information you would like to see, and from where you would like to see it, and we will make you an application. We will do the coding so you can use the system like you would Microsoft Word.

Is Web scraping legal?

Yes. Web scraping of public sites has been upheld by the United States Supreme Court.

How come a lot of the best web scraping tools don’t get all the data I need?

Every website is different.

There are different mazes that each web site puts up to prevent you from seeing their data. A standard solution will get past most of them, but not necessarily all of them.

You need a custom web scraping tool where you tell us the websites and pages you want to scrape and we will make sure your web scraping tool will glide through every maze with ease.

What will my data look like?

You can have your data returned to you in the form of a CSV file or Excel. You can have JSON objects. Using the Farber Consulting Group, we can set up a database where you can store your data natively and decide which reports to see and how often.

At the click of a button, you can scrape the web for the information you need and have the report sent to you right away.

Can I scrape popular sites like Google, Amazon, eBay?

Absolutely. Any data that is made available to the public is easy pickings for a quality made custom web scraping tool.

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