The internet is an excellent resource for any business owner that is willing to put in the effort to gather it.
It is a rich source of insight regarding your customers and consumers. Using this insight, you can make better decisions, develop more effective strategies, and become a market leader.
How Can You Carry Out Data Gathering?
Data gathering is made possible through web scraping.
Web scraping is the automated process of extracting data from websites. It makes use of software known as a scraper. The scraper is set to gather data from specific websites, parse it, and store it in a database or spreadsheet in a readable format.
The web crawler makes use of a proxy server that hides the computers’ IP address and location. It makes it possible to scrape data anonymously without getting banned from websites. You can also access geo-blocked sites and rotate IP addresses, making it possible to make each web request with a different IP address.
There are two main types of proxies you can use – data center proxies and residential proxies.
A data center proxy is artificially made and issued by cloud server providers, while internet service providers provide residential proxies. While data center proxies will provide a high-speed connection, residential proxies will provide the highest level of reliability.
Here are five benefits you can get from web scraping
1) Monitoring the Competition
Producing products that are well demanded in the market is not enough. You must keep an eye on your competitors. The e-commerce industry is growing by the day, and every business is focused on leading the market.
Unless you keep tabs on what the competitors are doing, one move could have you losing a chunk of your market share. Web scraping will help you monitor new product releases and analyze competitors’ and their effects on your audience. You can also monitor the complaints from their customers and capitalize on them.
2) Strategic Pricing
Pricing is one of the areas that give most business owners a hard time. You have to price your products in a way that maximizes profits while attracting price-sensitive customers. You also cannot set your prices so low that the products lose value in the customers’ eyes.
By using a crawler to scrape price-related data from e-commerce sites, you can set your prices slightly below the baseline and attract customers. You can also monitor promotions, offers, and changes in market prices and adjust your prices accordingly.
3) Keyword Research
Having a well-designed, user-friendly, and resourceful website will not benefit your business if it is not visible to your target audience. Using the right keywords enables you to optimize your site for search engines and put it on the first page of search engine result pages.
Using web scraping for keyword research enables you to find the search terms and phrases your target audience is using to find products and services. And incorporating these words in your web content makes you visible and drives traffic to your site.
4) Improved Customer Experience
Most people will look at a product’s online reviews before making a purchase. It is a smart way for a buyer to confirm that they will be getting value for their money. Bad reviews could crush your business, and this is why it’s vital to keep track of what your customers think about your products. And make changes where it’s needed.
A web scraper enables you to monitor what the market is saying about your products through review websites and social media channels. You can then use these data to understand what they think about your brand, analyze their expectations, and make adjustments to meet their needs.
5) Lead Generation
Advertising to your target audience may not always generate the results you need. Directly reaching out to them is a more effective method. You can manually collect this contact information from their websites. However, it would take too much time and have numerous errors. And you may need to hire additional staff.
Although lead generation tools are available in the market, they are expensive. And they may not always generate quality leads. By using a web scraper, you can extract contact details from sites such as Yellow Pages and LinkedIn in minutes. And still use it to generate all the benefits we’ve listed.
Every business stands to benefit from data available on the web. Through data gathering, you can develop insights that will enable you to:
- Keep an eye on your competitors
- Set better prices
- Make your site visible to your audience
- Increase customer satisfaction
- Generate leads, fast
Ensure that you invest in a quality web scraper. A reliable proxy with rotating IP addresses is also necessary to ensure that your IP address is not blocked during your web scraping project. It will also give you access to geo-blocked sites.