5 Ways Web Scraping Helps Small Businesses in a Big Way
Congrats on starting a business! You’re now probably wondering what comes next in your journey. Well, first and foremost, to begin a venture and rise it to its full potential, you need information.
Collecting data is not only for big businesses, so don’t be intimidated by their large budget plans and countless employees. It’s helpful to keep in mind that every project is built on research, and that reason alone is enough to make you interested in web scraping.
Web scraping is used by companies all over the globe to keep track of their competition, discover industry trends, gain a better grasp of what their consumers want, and enhance marketing strategies.
Now that you’re aware of the fact that data is the pillar of your company let us get into what the process of web scraping is:
What Kind of Animal is Web Scraping?
All you need to know (for now) is that web scraping deals with going around websites and extracting data for you. This particular set of info can be stored in formats such as spreadsheets, JSON or as the original raw HTML. There is a lot that happens during the process, but you should finish up with clean, organized data at your immediate disposal.
Perhaps you’ve been doing your research manually, and while that isn’t a waste of time, it probably took a while to go through the infinite set of resources available on the Internet. Web scraping can extract everything and more in little to no time.
All this talk, and for what if you don’t know what it’s good for? Read on to find out how data scraping (or simply scraping) can be the ace up your sleeve:
It Replaces the Manual Grind
The speed and accuracy of data scraping are what make it so appealing. Humans will never be able to compete with scrapers that can correctly extract data from a jillion pages every hour.
A web scraper can extract almost anything you can see on a webpage in your browser and save information in any manner that makes further analysis easy. You don’t have to commit to a staff of developers to create programs for you, unlike the major firms. There are other parts of your business plan that you must invest extensively in as a developing company.
Scrapers can be programmed to run continuously without halting, to change gears at specific times of the day, or to simply check specific sites for updates. Whatever data extraction job you’re performing currently, a well-built scraper is likely to do it smarter, cheaper, and faster. Web scraping should not take up a large portion of your money. To put it another way, the online scraping service you choose must be cost-effective.
Data creates a Better Product
What makes for a good product? You have to give the people what they want, and web scraping ties in with that perfectly. You can scrape the web in places like forums and review sites. Perhaps you’re also selling on eBay or Amazon, so look there too!
Collecting user-generated data helps your business craft its product according to the pluses and minuses in people’s minds. The customer is more than likely brutally honest, and in turn, right. Use it to your advantage and increase the quality of your products and services so that they specifically mold after customer preferences.
In order to save money, some small businesses hire an untrained contractor to complete all of their web scraping tasks. This strategy could backfire because they run the risk of receiving inaccurate data. Businesses have also expressed their dissatisfaction with the freelancer they hired for missing important information, which leads to inaccurate results and therefore disables you from creating a qualitative product.
Lead generation is a vital and necessary stage in the development of any business. However, generating qualified leads to supply your sales pipeline is challenging.
Companies spend a lot of money trying to generate sales leads, but small businesses don’t have that kind of capital. As a result, small enterprises might purchase outdated and inaccurate data at a lower cost. To create leads, web scraping may be used to scrape data straight from a variety of sources.
Web scrapers are simple to use and can save you both energy and cash. Allowing you to acquire high-quality leads at a minimal cost means allowing you to spend your money on the more vital needs of your business.
There are a plethora of comparable items swarming the market. In such situations, customer decisions are made in a matter of seconds. As a result, you just have a few seconds to make your offer so well that they will take it without hesitation.
Small businesses may acquire data from a variety of sources via web scraping. This information should show you how your competitors price identical items and what the profit margins are. You can figure out the best pricing for your items and keep your customers even if the price is a little higher. This is a razor-thin line to tread, and web scraping is an easy way to stay on it.
Also, in order to remain ahead of the competition, merchants often price products dynamically, that is, they routinely change product pricing. You should use a web scraper to mimic their strategies and see your fresh product at the top.
Optimizing Internet Visibility
When it comes to developing an online presence, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is one of the most important aspects to master. Even tiny details like the tags and keywords, as well as the structure and connection to your website, are crucial. With this in mind, it’s essential to keep track of your SEO ranking as well as your competitors’.
Small businesses often use web scraping to obtain thorough information about their competitors’ tags and target keywords. This stage will assist you in determining what variables are attracting visitors to their website and how they are engaging their audiences. As a result, by making the necessary modifications to your SEO efforts, you may get a competitive advantage in your industry.
Towards a Flourishing Business
The advantages are numerous, and there is a rationale as to why all significant corporations use data scraping to aid in the development of their business strategies. This information is inexpensive to get but priceless once you have it.
We hope this article was good news to you and that it will help your business stay on the radar. Since we want to hear about your business in the next Forbes article, here’s a freemium web scraping tool.