Scraping company reviews has become an increasingly popular way for businesses to gain insights by collecting valuable feedback from customers in an automated way.
In this fast-moving world of technology, businesses and entities should use all the advantages out there to promote sales and strengthen customer-company relationships for the best.
Nowadays, many tools are accessible through the internet that can help your business grow, especially for startups and small businesses that don’t have a lot of exposure in the markets.
One of those tools is web scraping. Before we jump directly into the technicalities, we’ll start with the basics of the scraping reviews.
What Is Reviews Scraping?
The internet is filled with billions of data, but all open-ended and unstructured, which makes it hard for companies to prepare a customer portfolio for a targeted sales plan. This is essentially where web scraping comes of help.
A web scraping application gathers selected data from all over the internet and organizes it into a structured data file so that it can be useful.
For instance, websites may have reviews gathered from thousands of users. This data is extracted from websites for companies and gathered at one address to make it easier for further analysis and comparison.
What Are The Advantages of Business Reviews Extraction?
● For Businesses
A business can easily acknowledge a customer’s view on their products and services through analyzing company reviews. Getting feedback and knowing the customer target’s likes and dislikes can help them to improve their products.
Moreover, through web-scraping, they can stay updated on their competitor’s activities and be well-informed about their pricing strategies.
For an eentrepreneurial entity, it is always better to stay one step ahead and provide your customers with exactly what they want so that they remain loyal to the business. Business reviews extraction eliminates this gap by showing you what your customers expect from the business.
Take into consideration that scraping competitors’ reviews could also be beneficial for your business. Obtaining insights about competitors can be a huge advantage. One of the most effective ways to identify them in a specific field is by scraping numerous business directories, for example, YellowPages data extraction can one of the most reliable methods.
● For the Public
Web scraping is also beneficial for potential customers of any business as it gathers reviews and all types of feedback from other customers regarding a particular product all in one place with easy access.
This helps potential clients reconsider buying from a business if its products have low ratings. Also, saving them from having poor experiences and regrets resulting from a bad investment.
In addition, scraping company reviews also give exposure to small businesses and startups; therefore, people have more options to choose from.
Can You Scrape Company Reviews From Every Website?
All websites have the option to be scraped. However, many don’t allow scraping due to the sudden increase in traffic that leads to breakdowns and glitches in the servers.
For example, one of the commonly used platforms for extracting company reviews is Google. For more technical information about scraping data from Google, check this out.
This also adds up to the question of whether scrapping a website is legal, and to answer that, scraping is not illegal till the data you extract is public and is meant to be accessed by everyone.
You might be wondering how an individual could find out whether a website is scrapable or not. Well, every website has a Robots.txt file, and this is where you can check the parts of the website that the host wants to make accessible to the public.
How Does Scraping Company Reviews Work?
Scraping is an automated process where your computer’s software copies all the data from the website and saves it for later use. Once the code is entered, a request is sent to the server, and as a response, the data on the web page is contained. You then slowly eliminate the parts of data that you don’t need from the overall result.
Speaking of scraping company reviews, we can’t miss out on the main process of the tool. Here are a few steps you need to follow if you want to scrape a website.
Step 1 – Decide on the websites you want to scrape
We’re starting off simple with choosing what websites to scrape. To get an idea of where you can collect similar data, numerous popular ways are extracting reviews from Facebook and scraping Yelp reviews.
Once you make your choice, copy each website URL to move on to the next step.
Step 2 – Scan the page.
When you click right on the website, you wish to scrape and select the option labeled as ‘inspect’. Following this, you will see a series of backend codes that are essential and will be scraped.
Step 3 – Find the scraping content.
Usually, data on the backend codes will be mixed up, but if you’re after a specific type of content, you’ll have to find it separately. They can be identified by unique tags that encompass the relevant content.
Step 4 – Incorporate codes into the software.
When you locate the correct tags of data that you want to be scrapped, enter them into the scraping software. This will help the program to know exactly what to scrape and where to locate that data.
Step 5 – Wait for the program to fetch and save data
When you execute the data into the server, it will start working on the magic, requesting the site access first. On getting the access, the programmer will automatically start collecting the data and filter out what isn’t needed.
Step 6 – Data storage
After all the relevant data is extracted, it will be time to store it. The data can be stored in various formats. However, the most common ones are excel, .csv, and JSON files. Once the data is saved, you can use it however you want.
There are a number of reasons why people and businesses use scraping.
- Analyzing your business reviews
- Gathering contact information (emails, numbers, etc.)
- Collecting research and development data
- Organizing information
- Analyzing company reviews of competitors and for comparisons
Overall, scraping company reviews is a highly useful process for businesses and for customers as this type of data can gather a wide range of information relevant to the owner’s needs.
Moreover, scraping is not really that hard of a process, but it is quite technical and needs expertise due to the sensitivity of rules and mishandling risks. Therefore, it is advised that you hire a professional programmer to do this for you to get the best, most authentic results.