Web scrapers are meant to parse the information on a website and then exporting it for processing by a different application. The ancestors of these APIs were named screen scrapers. These were employed to gather the information on an application screen and then export it away for processing. Now, you can buy the best web scraping API providers’ services to make sure you get the best tools for your project.
Web scrapers operate by hitting the destination website and parsing the information held on that website. They are usually studying particular kinds of information. There are ways of eliminating the path for web scrapers, but only a few websites do so.
Table of Content
- What is API scraping?
- It is legal to scrape data?
- One of the best tricks
- The best Web Scraping API providers
What is API scraping?
One misunderstanding for most people who want to start scraping sites like Facebook, Amazon, Google, Twitter, and so on, is that it’s easier to do it with a custom scraper than by using an API. However, scrapers quickly realise that big websites have protections in place to prevent them from getting their precious data. This is where API providers shine best, you leave the problem of overcomming websites’ protection mechanisms to the API providers and focus on making your ideas work.
Mainly, the purpose of both data scraping and APIs is to obtain web data. Web scraping enables you to secure data from any website through web scraping bots. Meanwhile, APIs provide you immediate access to the information you need.
Therefore, you might find yourself in a situation where there is not an API to obtain the information you need or the access to the API is insufficient or too costly. For instance, you can scrape Amazon since they do not give you access to an API to obtain this information.
It is legal to scrape data?
There is not a simple answer. The real question is how you plan to use the extracted data. If that data is public to all users or visitors, then is completely legal to copy it on your device. However, you need to be careful how you use it.
Also, another concern should be to not hinder the bandwidth of the targeted website. Extracting data may affect the performance of that website because scrapers read and access data with extraordinary speed, much faster than a human being can. If this happens, you can get your IP blocked to prevent further access and the website’s crash.
Most websites present APIs for programmers to get the data. They also give support documentation. If the website has an API, that means that there are no scraping constraints. So, just read their terms and conditions for handling their data.
However, if the data provided via API is not enough for your needs, for example if you’re scraping Google results, Facebook, Amazon, then you still need custom scraping to get that info.
One of the best tricks
If the website doesn’t present an API and you want to scrape its information, then scan for JSON support. If the web page load time is quick, then most probably it is working with JSON.
From there, hit F12 to see the Developer Tools panel. Reload the page, and proceed to the Sources page to see the elements that finish with .json. You can verify the URL it originated from. Next, start a different page and copy-paste that URL, and JSON will be presented with the data.
If those JSONs are protected with tokens, then you’ll really have a hard time accessing them and you need an expert scraper to reverse engineer the protection mechanisms.
The best Web Scraping API providers
You need a web scraping API or you can build your own to go out there and take whatever data you require from the target websites. Using an API for scraping removes complexity and time and adds costs. Let’s see the best web scraping APIs to collect, analyze, and aggregate data.
Scraper API manages all of the difficult elements of web scraping and enables you to quickly produce value for your clients. Utilizing their scraping proxy, you can establish a stable API scraper in seconds.
- 40+ million IPs from various providers. There is a mix of datacenter, residential and mobile proxies for increased reliability and to avoid blocks.
- 12 countries with up to 50 countries available by request.
- 99.99% guaranteed uptime regardless of your subscription plan.
- Unlimited bandwidth so you can pay only for successful requests. Therefore, you can easily estimate the costs and keep track of your finances.
- Professional support by chat or email. It is friendly and fast.
- 3 subscription plans ranging from $29/month to 249$/month. Moreover, you can also get a custom offer with unlimited concurrent requests and unlimited API calls. For this, you need to get in touch with their sales department.
Apify is the single online store for all your web scraping projects’ needs. Here you will get the 3 W that you long for: web scraping, web automation and web integration. Furthermore, you can use their API to start actors. These actors are programs running on Apify.
- Employ existing tools such as Facebook scraper, SERPs scraper, Instagram scraper, Google Maps scraper, Amazon scraper, etc.
- Make your own custom scraper.
- HTTP proxies to hide your original IP behind datacenter or residential proxies.
- Appify SDK with Node.js library for web scraping.
- Specialized data storage to export results in CSV, Excel or JSON formats.
- Web integration with Zapier, Integromat, Keboola, Webhooks, Rest API, Transposit or CLI.
- 4 subscription plans ranging from free to $999/month. In addition, you can also get a custom offer with unlimited platform usage and unlimited residential proxies. For this, you need to get in touch with their sales department.
Developers who want to handle data from various websites are the ideal customers for this type of API. All search engines operate web scrapers to define how web pages look on Search Engine Results Pages (SERP).
Think of scraping API as a method of circumventing the need to recreate the wheel. If the information is out there scattered on multiple web pages, it can be assembled and handled much more quickly than compiling a new collection of data.
Contact now one of the best web scraping API providers. They are essential for developers to assemble collections of data, reducing expensive endeavors.