How to Use Web Scraping to Research Your Competition

5 min readMar 24, 2021

Standing on top of your direct competitors is a goal that every business owner dreams of, no matter their industry. Having access to available data on public websites plays a massive role in choosing the correct information for analysis and comparing your own strategy and positioning in the market.

Putting together a robust competitor analysis is a must if you want to grow a successful business, especially if you are dealing with global competitors as an online business.

Here is where a web scraping API comes in handy and gives you multiple options to web scrape existing data that you can process afterward. The old-fashioned way of searching the Internet and then copy and paste all the relevant information can take a while. Web scraping can do all this within seconds, saving you a lot of time and money.

If you feel you need more information about web scraping, you can find out more here or on our blog.

But this time, we will go right to the crux of the matter and show you how a web scraping API helps you handle all competitors.

Have a look at their SEO strategy

Instead of craving for your competitors’ popularity and wondering how they continue to strive, you can audit their SEO strategy. Using web scraping tools for this process means that you will get access to uncovered popular keywords. You will also be able to audit landing pages to get a better overview of the keywords and links used by your competitors.

Besides overseeing what your competitors are doing right, web scrapers can also show you what your competitors are doing wrong. Identify which of their keywords rank poorly or are ignored.

These insights can help you create an unbreakable SEO strategy, built to dominate where your competitors fail.

Explore their PPC spendings

Finding the actual numbers on how much money your competitors spend for Pay Per Click campaigns using a web scraping API, you can get a good idea about their approximate budgets and discover the most profitable keywords and paid ads.

The best part of this process is that you will never have to spend money on guessing which keywords will work for your business and which ones you need to avoid. You will go straight to the correct answer!

Investigate their product pricing

Clients can access tons of data instantly by searching the Internet. Comparing products and prices is a matter of seconds, so you have to keep your prices comparable to your competition.

This sounds like a simple task that anyone on your team can do. Just go to your competitors’ websites and see what the prices are at the moment and the possible changes over time. But this method is time-consuming, and it gives you only a brief overview, not deep insights.

Using a web scraping tool, you will automatically receive updated information about what your competitors are charging and when. Like this, you can always know when there’s a flash sale, or you can bundle their products to drive more sales. If you scrape pricing data as well, you will learn how to run your own deals and which products to introduce in campaigns, all for your benefit.

Data extraction tools are crucial here because they automate the process, saving you time and ensuring data accuracy.

Oversee their product line and categories

By web scraping through your competitors’ lines and categories, you gain valuable insights on what they are using, the benefits and features, and how they are all bundled together.

Doing this at a larger scale, with multiple competitors’ products, you will see the similarities and trends that define the market at one particular moment. For example, you can discover that a specific color or style is more popular than another, so you can adjust the products to fit the needs.

On the same topic, after you identify the vendors and wholesalers your competitors use, you can scrape through their pages for real-time pricing. This way, you make sure that your product pricing is as competitive as possible to attract all those budget-savvy customers on your side.

Gather reviews and comments from third-party websites

91% of 18–34-year-olds trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, and 93% of consumers say that online reviews influenced their purchase decisions, based on 2020 reports. This means you need to pay more attention to your own social media channels if you are not doing this already.

But a more significant advantage of using a web scraping API in this situation is that you can find out what your competitors’ customers are thinking and see what they like and dislike about their products. Having access to this kind of data allows you to dominate the market.

Go straight with web scraping third-party sites, review sites, social media channels, and community forums to collect all the feedback you need about your competitors within minutes, and then analyze the data.

Search the comments and reviews for all the things that they have in common, like customers loving or hating the services, quality, or speed of delivery for competitors’ products. Whatever you find, focus on offering what clients want and need the most.

At the same time, you should pay attention to negative reviews and comments on a more imperative level. Customers complaining about packaging, damaged products, or bad customer service would likely respond well if your company shows their attention and interest in making things better.

Tackle their social media strategy

As we already know, social media reviews are an essential part of the buying process, impacting the marketplace. But social media means much more than that.

You can gain insights about how often your competitors’ engage and how well they communicate with the audience, or what type of sales they offer. From there, you receive clues into how to create an effective social media strategy.

A web scraping API helps by giving you access to competitors’ followers to target and engage with them by collecting information about how many times your competitors post, what they are offering, and what visuals or graphics they use to foster engagement. And again, the more information you can scrape, the better prepared you’ll be to build a solid social media presence.

Analyze their funding

While scraping websites like Crunchbase and AngelList, you can determine if your competitors are profitable or have funding and venture capital behind them. These websites can offer you information regarding what type of funding your competitors have received, how much, and in which stage they are with the funding process.

Another great thing you can identify is who offered the funding so that you pitch your own products or services to the same or similar investors.

Also, keep in mind that there are multiple funding methods like business grants or receiving an award for a business plan contest. This information gives you an indication of how financially secure your competitors are.

Final thoughts

Understanding competitors’ behavior regarding their online presence and activity can have an undeniable impact on business owners’ strategic decisions.

From knowing your clients better by having direct access to their needs and wishes to manage budgets that will improve your business’ growth or launching a new product on the market, WebScrapingAPI is right near you, saving you time, money, and other resources that you can easily focus on something else.

The battle is now online, and it’s up to each business to adapt to this new wave of data and information because those who will embrace it sooner will win.




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