Individuals who are looking for large amounts of data have made web scraping a popular topic. Many people are increasingly inclined to extract data from different sites in order to grow their businesses. People often find it difficult to get data because of the many challenges involved in web scraping. We have listed some of these challenges below.
1. Modifications to the website structure
Sometimes, structural changes are made to multiple websites in order to provide a better user experience. For scrapers that were initially set up to create specific designs, this can prove difficult. They won’t function properly if there are any modifications made. Even if there is only a minor alteration to the webpage, it is important to set up web scrapers to track the modifications made to the pages. These problems can be fixed by constantly monitoring them and adapting as necessary.
2. 2. Bot access
It is a good idea check the website’s permission to scrape before you start any target site. If you discover that the website owner doesn’t allow scraping via its robots.txt then you might ask them for permission. During this process, you should explain your scraping goals and requirements. In the event that the owner is not willing to grant permission, you might try looking for another site with similar information.
3. IP blocking
IP blocking can be used to block web scrapers’ access to site information. It happens when multiple requests from the same IP address are detected by a site. To stop the scraping process from being stopped or banned, the website must restrict its access. There are many IP proxy services you can use with automatic scrapers to avoid blocking.
4. Different HTML coding
When dealing with large websites, such as e-Commerce that have many pages, you should be ready to face the challenge of different HTML coding. If the development process was long and the coding team has been changed forcibly, this type of threat can be quite common. It is important to ensure that the parsers are set correctly for each page, and modify if necessary. This can be fixed by scanning the entire website and identifying any differences in the coding.
5. Captchas: The Challenge
You may have seen captcha requests on many web pages. These are used to distinguish human beings from crawling software by asking the user to enter certain characters or using logic tasks. Special open-source tools make it easy to solve captchas. You will also find crawling services that are specifically designed for this purpose. You might have difficulty passing certain captchas on Chinese websites. However, you can find specialist web scraping services that can help.
6. Data management and data warehousing
Web scraping on a large scale will generate a lot of information. If you are part of a large group, the data can be used by many people. It is a good idea to be able to manage the data effectively. This aspect is often overlooked by companies trying to extract large amounts of data. If the data warehouse infrastructure isn’t properly constructed, searching, querying, filtering, and exporting this information will be time-consuming and very hectic. It is essential that the data warehouse infrastructure be reliable, scalable, and secure enough to allow for large-scale data extraction. In certain cases, where real-time processing is critical to business success, the quality of the data warehouse system can be a major issue. There are many options available, ranging from BigQuery up to Snowflake.
7. Anti-scraping technology
Many websites use powerful anti-scraping technology that will stop all forms of web scraping. LinkedIn is a remarkable example. These websites employ dynamic coding algorithms to prevent bot access and implement IP blocking techniques, even though they adhere to the data extract services. It will take a lot of time and money to develop a technical solution that can be used to circumvent these anti-scraping technology. For anti-scraping technology to be evaded, web scraping companies will mimic human behavior.
8. 8. Legal issues
Legal issues are a very delicate issue in web scraping. Although it is legal, there are restrictions on commercial use of the extracted data. It depends on what data you are extracting, and how you intend to use it. You can find out more information about legalities of web scraping by visiting the Internet.
9. Protect your professional reputation with Akamai or Imperva
They are responsible for professional protection services. They offer bot detection and solutions for auto-replacement of content. Bot detection is a way to distinguish web crawlers from human visitors. It helps protect web pages against any parsing information. Professional web scrapers are able to mimic the human behavior flawlessly. Using genuine, registered accounts and mobile devices is a great way to avoid anti-scraping traps. If the information is being used to auto-substitute, it might appear as a mirror image. The text could be made in hieroglyphics font. This issue can be fixed with special tools and timely testing.
10. Honeypot traps
This is a trap that the website owner uses to catch scrapers. These links can be visible to scrapers, but invisible to humans. The website can use the information, such as the IP address, to block any scraper once it is captured.
11. Slow load speed or unstable
Websites that receive too many requests might not respond quickly or stop loading. The problem won’t be apparent when people browse the site. They simply need to load it again and wait for the site recover. Scraping could be stopped if the scraper doesn’t know how to handle these kinds of emergency situations.
12. Login required
Logging in may be necessary if you have to provide protected information. After you have submitted your credentials, your browser will automatically add the cookie value to any subsequent requests. Website understands that you are the same person who logged in before. When a login is required, ensure that cookies are sent to the website.
13. Dynamic content
AJAX is used by many websites to update dynamic web content. AJAX calls allow for infinite scrolling and lazy loading of images. You can also see more information by clicking on a button to display additional information. These types of websites will allow users to view more information, but it won’t be possible for scrapers.
14. Quality data challenge
Web parsing is all about data accuracy. It may be impossible for text fields to be correctly filled out or to extract information that matches a predefined template. It is important to test each field and phrase before saving data. This will ensure that the data quality is maintained. Some tests can be automated, but there will be cases where the assessment must be done manually.
15. Time for scraping
Big data web scraping can affect the site’s performance. To avoid overloading, it is important to set a time limit for stripping. To make precise estimates of time, it is necessary to test the endurance of the site prior to beginning data extraction.
Web scraping will present you with more challenges in the future. However, it is not difficult to ensure that the sites are treated properly. Do not overload sites. It will always be possible to find a web scraping tool that is competent and capable of handling your scraping job efficiently and effectively.