A Website scraper is a program that extracts specific data from targeted websites. Users generally specify the target data during a setup phase, then initiate a live execution of the website scraper to collect data and images from the target website in a format more compatible with the user’s other processes.
Watch how easily the Mozenda website scraper can extract data!
The purpose of website scraping is to simulate the human browsing experience by replicating computer commands to browse, search, navigate, and ultimately extract specific data fields from a web page. The benefit and value of web scraping lies in the automation of the data collection and the transformation of the data itself from an unstructured format to a structured format such as CSV, TSV, or XML where it can be uploaded, stored and analyzed.
Web harvesting is the most efficient way to collect contact information from the web. In the past, approaches to web harvesting consisted of writing specialized programs whose job it was to decipher items of interest among vast amounts of uninteresting lines of HTML text found on a web page. Developing these programs was time consuming and unreliable.
In 2007, Mozenda founders created a way to mimic a person as it operated objects on a web page. This user-friendly method allows users to operate the program without programming experience, and identify target-text by it’s location on the page, using criteria such as specific content, or by its appearance, such as email addresses or phone numbers.
Companies who need specific and accurate web data usually face high project costs and long time-lines, including hiring a team of programmers who must continually update custom software. Mozenda solves both of these problems by providing a program that requires no programming experience, and running projects on high-powered mozenda harvesting servers. The number of employees required and the time needed are both drastically reduced, often to 1 person.
Some companies use web crawlers to perform indexing functions on a variety of sites for a variety of reasons. Some of those functions include:
- Indexing how many and what types of pages exist
- Counting how many times certain terms are referenced
- Noting broken links or elements on a page
- Tracking changes to certain web pages
- Collecting pagerank information
The most popular crawlers are search engine crawlers. These crawlers have the specific task of attempting to index the entire web to make content more searchable and available to users.
Mozenda Training Videos
|Input Text Into a Form||0:44|
|Click the “Next” Button to Load the Next Page of Results||1:58|
|Schedule an Agent to Run Regularly||1:08|
|Combine the Contents of Two Fields||1:16|