Mozenda Web Scraping Software Year in Review
January 23, 2019
What. A. Year. It. Was.
2018 will be remembered as the year everything changed. Not just a “Who Moved My Cheese” kind of change, but the turn it upside down and shake it around kind of change.
From org charts to core technology, we leaped forward implementing changes that helped us achieve record results across the board.
Some of the highlights include:
- Key hires in a new org chart with great people in all departments
- Significant innovation in our core scraping technology (beta coming soon)
- New center of excellence in European location
- Technology partnership to facilitate massive product expansion (coming this year)
- 90% Customer retention!
These results and the associated momentum can mostly be attributed to the efforts of Mozenda’s Integrator and Chief Accountability Officer’s relentless execution, and all the wonderful employees who truly seek to delight the customer.
For 2019, we expect the momentum to only accelerate. Our strong underlying corporate organization coupled with a new vision and team to execute is a winning combination. For customers, this means higher service levels, stellar support, and more product innovation and stability.
Here’s where we started and ended across key areas:
Market Traction & Trends
If there was a “Magic Quadrant” for web-scraping, Mozenda would be a solid leader in it. While many scraping companies are trying to reinvent themselves as “solutions” companies, Mozenda is holding steady as a web-scraping product and services company. We see a lot of value in developing the core capabilities that the market needs and is asking for. Whether we meet those needs through licensing or our web scraping services department, we want every customer to succeed and win big.
The result of this approach has lead to a record-breaking year in terms of customer acquisition and retention and a lot of momentum going into 2019.
Over the last year, a few trends have emerged that are worth mentioning. Here are some of our predictions for 2019:
- An increasing number of More websites will try to limit or block bot traffic
- Better data prep tools will emerge for consuming unstructured data
- Large Enterprise will drive demand for web-data
- The majority of web-data collection will be performed “offshore”
- It will no longer make financial sense for companies to “roll their own” web scraper
- The new buzzword will be “Data Workflow Automation”
As suggested by our record-breaking renewal numbers, we’ve been working hard to improve our client service levels. This will continue to be an area of focus throughout 2019. With high customer satisfaction comes a willingness to share and educate; so for the first time last year, we produced 3 short videos highlighting customer successes. It’s no surprise that each of the companies are in completely different industries and have completely different use cases:
A Wisconsin-based manufacturer and distributor of synthetic motor oils and lubricants that are sold in more than 50 countries uses Mozenda data to:
- Develop product recommendation shopper guides
- Maintain accuracy of its “Find AMSOIL Near You” website database
- Improve retail distribution planning
- Conduct competitive pricing research
“Mozenda is a hugely important resource for our planning, operations, and e-commerce teams.”
Internet Services Manager.
This Minnesota digital marketing agency uses Mozenda to gather customer insights quicker and develop more holistic personas that fuel a BI-driven targeting and lead gen process.
AMICLEAR uses Mozenda to:
- Analyze topic and content sources
- Research content for infographics
- Analyze online content sharing
- Monitor content publishing and distribution
“Mozenda is a unique tool with its own space in our martech stack.”
Utah-based e-commerce retailer of outdoor products and equipment uses Mozenda to automate many product merchandising activities so it can compete against much larger competitors by:
- Compiling new product data
- Maintaining up-to-date inventory numbers
- Updating distribution channels points of sale
“If you run any kind of e-commerce store, Mozenda is a must-have.”
CEO and Founder
While these were just three sample customers and use cases, our customer list includes companies of all sizes in countries across the planet. We’ve seen growth at all customer levels as people who need web data realize Mozenda offers the best way to get it.
As web-scraping becomes more complex, Mozenda engineers are constantly looking for ways to reduce the complexity. One of our focal points last year was to make web scraping more reliable while at the same time making it faster.
We accomplished this in several ways:
If you want to extract web data faster or scrape content-heavy sites, mastering our Request Blocker functionality will make your wishes come true. By automating blocking requests, you can direct your agents to ignore CSS, media, ads, images and event-driven content so that your agent will only focus on extracting one thing…DATA. #WinWin
If you tackle a lot of difficult or high-volume data scraping projects, our Job Sequencer eliminates some major pain points. This reduces the workload for each web scraping agent into smaller parts, increases the amount of data collected and enables you to reuse repeated steps instead of having to build them each time.
By combining the power of Request Blocking and Job Sequencing, our customers were able to extract web data up to five times faster than before. (Don’t think I need to say anything else about this incredible benefit).
A feature we call Notify Actions enables you to have real-time interaction with web scraping Agents by monitoring changes, pushing data into other systems or receiving notifications about your data. It expedites delivery of time-sensitive data, helps you monitor website changes faster and troubleshoot complex websites.
What’s new in 2019
For most of 2018, we worked on a significant upgrade, NO, make that a complete overhaul of the Agent Builder. The new Agent Builder (Based on the latest Chromium code base) is faster, more reliable, has more features, and comes with several google dev tools built in. Look for an early beta this quarter followed by an open release in Q2.
Also coming this year is a much needed new product aimed at assisting customers with data preparation. Once released, customers will be able to publish their data directly into a data wrangler where recipes can be created to automatically clean web data then publish to a catalog for insights and analytics. Additionally, the product will offer a suite of features built on NLP, machine learning, and AI to assist in more advanced unification and MDM and applications.
Finally, Mozenda will be expanding its offshore fulfillment center in Europe to include dozens of product experts ready to help companies lower their data scraping costs. We are particularly excited about this strategic investment we are making overseas because it provides new options for large volume customers that didn’t exist previously. With this expansion, we will have the capacity and capability to meet the ever-increasing demand we see in our pipeline.
We’d like to thank our customers, partners, contractors, and vendors for making 2018 a stellar year. As a company and individually, the entire Mozenda team would like to wish you a very prosperous and joyous 2019.