August 15, 2022

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Advertisement In today’s world, business functionality is closely tied to how data a company has...

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In today’s world, business functionality is closely tied to how data a company has consistent access to, with brands that can regularly collect and analyze data having a better chance of succeeding than those that cannot.

Generally, and with all things being equal, every brand gets an equal opportunity for data extraction. Because it is impossible for all the companies today to finish the amount of data on the internet, there is no need to find one brand getting less data than the next.

However, several things can inhibit a brand from getting the data they need. We explain this as getting blocked during web scraping.

And in this article, we will highlight the different things that may cause some companies to get blocked during web scraping and the various ways to avoid this problem, including using a web scraper API.

What is web scraping?

Web scraping can be defined as the best automated solution for collecting large sums of data from the internet.

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It is a preferred choice for businesses that prioritize data extraction as it helps them bypass several limitations and collect data in large amounts quickly and with fewer mistakes. The process focuses on scraping from publicly available data with high-end tools.

However, not all websites like to see their data scraped, especially by businesses that may be in direct competition with them. And hence some websites have anti-scraping techniques that disallow web scraping, as we will see in the next few segments.

But once web scraping is successful, the data can be used in several ways that can help grow the company and increase its profit margin.

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How Can Companies Benefit From Ethical Automated Data Acquisition?

The following are ways that companies can benefit from scraping publicly available data from the internet.

  1. Create Business Intelligence

Every business that wants to succeed first has to create a strategy to guide everything they do. These strategies can govern everything from how they make certain products and when they attempt to launch them.

And developing these strategies often involves high-level intelligence that can only be obtained from collecting large quantities of data every so often.

  1. Market and Sentiment Analysis

Businesses also need to understand the market they are functioning in and fully comprehend their consumer sentiments.

These discoveries can help structure how the business operates and significantly affect its revenue.

Understanding the market and performing sentiment analysis involves getting the right data at the right time and in the right amount.

  1. Generating Leads

Leads are usually the people businesses can sell to and continue to sell to in the future. They are the ones that turn into buyers and customers and keep the business going.

Without leads, companies will have nobody to sell to and no way to make a profit. And lead generation can be done using web scraping to collect the necessary contact information from various sources on the internet.

5 Common Reasons Why People Suffer IP Blocking

Getting data is crucial for several reasons, yet some brands can get blocked from performing web scraping for so many reasons. Below are a few reasons that may cause a business to get blocked during web scraping:

  1. Using Cheap or Free Tools

The most common reason people get blocked during web scraping involves using free or cheap tools to perform the exercise.

These tools can constitute several challenges, including behaving like bots and never trying to mimic human behavior, which can inspire the website to block it quickly.

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Some of these tools are also exceptionally terrible at adapting to website changes and will not hesitate to crash whenever they notice a change in the website’s structure. 

  1. Not Setting Intervals

Not setting intervals or scheduling scraping can also be another common reason people get blocked during web scraping.

Websites are always on the lookout for users that perform repetitive tasks without breaks, and once these users are spotted, they are quickly blocked to prevent further interaction with the server.

  1. Scraping at Peak Hours

People who also scrape at peak hours also find themselves getting blocked. This is often because peak hours are usually the busiest time for servers, with many legitimate users also making requests to the same servers.

Scraping the server at such times makes it easy to get blocked as too many repetitive tasks can cause the server to crash.

  1. Repeating IP Address

Using one IP address repeatedly is also a good recipe for blocking. IPs are easy to identify as each device has a unique address. Once an IP is identified as performing the same action repeatedly, it can quickly get blocked by the website.

  1. Geo-Restrictions

Of all the reasons people get blocked during web scraping, this factor seems to be the least to control. This is because websites can read IPs and identify where they originate.

Those seen to be coming from a forbidden location are often blocked, and the user is denied further access to the server content.

5 Simple Tips to Resolve These Problems

The following are 5 hacks that can help a brand avoid getting blocked during scraping:

  1. Rotating IPs

IP rotation has to be one of the most effective solutions to blocking and bans related to IPs. When you rotate IPs, it becomes difficult for the website to identify the user as the same person or link their activities.

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Each time you switch to a different IP, the server reads you as a new user and hence cannot block you.

  1. Using Proxies

Proxies are also very efficient at preventing blocks during scraping. This is because they easily handle issues such as automated IP rotations, bypassing anti-scraping measures and even handling geo-restrictions.

  1. Scheduling Scraping

Scheduling scraping during off-peak hours is also an excellent solution to blocking. Off-peak hours have lesser traffic coming to the server, and scraping at such times places lesser strain on the server and could instigate a block or ban.

  1. Using Random Intervals

Another great tip to help you get around blocking during data collection is to ensure that you use random intervals for your operations.

Intervals are seen as breaks between one scraping operation and the next, and using similar intervals can make it easy for the server to identify you.

The best practice is to set intervals that change without a regular pattern.

  1. Using a Scraper API

A final and vital tip to avoiding bans is to use a scraper API where applicable. Some networks and applications allow for connection through a programming interface. This type of connection allows for direct interaction with the server’s content without extra tools.

And since the program supports the connection, there is usually no case of blocking. Check this Oxylabs page for more information about Scraper APIs.

Conclusion

Data is necessary for businesses, and getting blocked can set a brand backward. There are several reasons why a company can get blocked while trying to get data, and the tips above can easily help you avoid these problems.

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