Monday, 21 July 2014

Web Data Scraping - Scrape Business Data in no time

The Internet has evolved as one of the largest repositories of information for your business. You can design intelligent business processes to access a whole host of relevant information sources that will help you strategize, implement and deliver effective business objectives. Leveraging the benefits and usefulness of Web Scraping Tools is one such methodology that most businesses have adopted. Let us take a look at some of the ways it helps you easily scrape data relevant for your business.

Scraping for Business Information

Web Data Scraping is a technique, employed by most organizations. It involves the implementation of tools that help businesses extract unstructured data and convert them into usable business information. The focus of most scraping initiatives revolves around the organization’s need to glean the following information:
  • Competitor analysis to structure and strategist effectively 
  • Price comparisons to price their products competitively 
  • Customer feedbacks to enhance their product portfolio and provide customers with better brand experience   Market dynamics to help them identify areas of opportunities and threats
Using Scraping Tools

The abundance of information available on the Internet that helps you build up a productive business strategy can be easily extracted and leveraged to benefit your business. Tools have been designed with intuitive interface and intelligent algorithms which help in furthering this end. 
Website Data Scraping tools are equipped for compatibility with a wide variety of applications so as to be able to explore a huge range of information sources.  These tools are fully automated and display the drag and drop facility ensuring users get to leverage the benefits of speed and convenience.

Data extraction tools are not only adept at extracting data, but are also equally well-equipped to combine relevant statistics from several social media platforms like YouTube, Twitter, and Google Analytics and so on. This helps businesses to analyse trends and plan strategies accordingly. 

Challenges of the Data Scraping Process

Just as there is no dearth of data to be collected from the Web, there is also an abundance of web scraping tools to execute the data collection process. However, the capability of the tool to help you collect the appropriate data needs to be assured before you can proceed with its implementation. Some of the challenges faced by most businesses owing to their wrong choice of tools include the following:

  • Run-of-the-mill extraction tools are unable to scale up sufficiently in order to capture large volumes of data
  • Some tools are also unable to establish compatibility with most data sources and therefore do not provide a holistic data collection approach
  • Some tools are also not equipped to conduct an automatic detection of updates made to a data source and therefore end up providing inaccurate data.
In the light of all this it is essential that you identify the right tool for your need and select one that is embedded with an updated technology to help you achieve the following:

  • Ensure that you are able to access the appropriate data that you want
  • Help you structure it in the format you want
  • Provide quick and easy access to all available data sources no matter how complex
  • Run accurately and is a reliable source to help you churn out usable information.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Customized Web Data Extraction Solutions for Business

As you begin leading your business on the path to success, competitive analysis forms a major part of your homework. You have already mobilized your efforts in finding the appropriate website data scrapping tool that will help you to collect relevant data from competitive websites and shape them up into useable information. There is however a need to look for a customized approach in your search for Data Extraction tools in order to leverage its benefits in the best possible way.

Off-the-shelf Tools Impede Data Extraction
In the current scenario, Internet Technologies are evolving in abundance. Every organization leverages this development and builds their websites using a different programming language and technology. Off-the-shelf Website Data extraction tools are unable to interpret this difference. They fail to understand the data elements that need to be captured and end up in gathering data without any change in the software source codes.

As a result of this incapability in their technology, off-the-shelf solutions often deliver unclean, incomplete and also inaccurate data. Developers need to contribute a humungous effort in cleaning up and structuring the data to make it useable. However, despite the time-consuming activity, data seldom metamorphoses into the desired information. Also the personnel dealing with the clean-up process needs to have sufficient technical expertise in order to participate in the activities. The endeavor however results in an impediment to the whole process of data extraction leaving you thirsting for the required information to augment business growth.

Understanding how Web Extraction tools work

Web Scrapping tools are designed to extract data from the web automatically. They are usually small pieces of code written using programming languages such as Python, Ruby or PHP depending upon the expertise of the community building it. There are however several single-click models available which tends to make life easier for non-technical personnel.

The biggest challenge faced by a successful web extractor tool is to know how to tackle the right page and the right elements on that page in order to extract the desired information. Consequently, a web extractor needs to be designed to understand the anatomy of a web page in order to accomplish its task successfully. It should be designed to interpret the meaning of HTML elements like , table rows () within those tables, and table data (<td>) cells within those rows in order to extract the exact data. It will also be interfacing with the
element which are blocks of text and know how to extract the desired information from it.

Customized Solutions for your business
Customized Solutions are provided by most Data Scraping experts. These software's help to minimize the cumbersome effort of writing elaborate codes to successfully accomplish the feat of data extraction. They are designed to seamlessly search competitive websites,identify relevant data elements, and extract appropriate data that will be useful for your business. Owing to their focused approach, these tools provide clean and accurate data thereby eliminating the need to waste valuable time and effort in any clean-up effort.

Most customized data extraction tools are also capable of delivering the extracted data in customized formats like XML or CSV. It also stores data in local databases like Microsoft Access, MySQL, or Microsoft SQL.

Customized Data scraping solutions therefore help you take accurate and informed decisions in order to define effective business strategies.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Web Data Extraction Solutions for business Automation

Your business today is driven purely and solely by information. This vital component is carved out from data scraped from relevant sources, cleansed and compiled to form the crux of your enterprise analytics plan. Therefore, following a manual practice for Data Extraction often makes it prone to errors which may be detrimental to the health of your business. Various Web Data Extraction Solutions therefore are made available which help to not only automate Website Data Scraping, but in the process also help in the automation of several business processes.  Let us take a look at some of these business processes:

Execute Data Mining

One of the most obvious usages of the data extractor tools is the function of Web Data Mining, which, if done through manual processes is neither cost-effective nor accurate. Therefore, data extraction solutions provide simple and convenient point and click data extraction interfaces. Moreover, these do not require any additional programming knowledge.

Validate Data accuracy

Web Site Data scraping tools use advanced technology to not only extract data, but also validate their accuracy. This is particularly beneficial for businesses which are involved in background screening and credit reporting activities. Automating the process of validating records helps in increasing turnaround time of the business and ensures accuracy, two of the most crucial criteria for achieving success in their line of business.

Be Price Wise

Organizations are always involved in studying the price dynamics in order to better understand the challenges and areas of opportunities. Your awareness on these helps you to provide more competitive pricing for your products and services. Data extraction solutions are equipped with pricing intelligence technology that helps to collect data on the price that your customer’s expect, their feedback on your products and services and helps you develop insights on products being launched by competitors, their price and availability. This automated process therefore ensures the following things for your business:

  • Increased market – share 
  •  Enhanced product strategy 
  •  Informed decisions
Be Compliance Ready

If yours is a financial services firm, you must have often found it to be a major challenge to keep yourself abreast of the compliance and risk factors. Tracking the myriad watch lists, sanction lists and federal and state regulations, available on the web is not only time taking but also an expensive endeavor. The automated Web Data Mining tools ensure that you are now able to do this without impacting the time and money aspect of your business. You are now ensured of compliance with all regulations and sanction lists that are updated on a regular basis. Consequently, your business can also breathe easy with a reduced exposure to financial fraud and identity theft.

Easy Access to Customer Feedback

Your customers are in a way the real owners of your business. They define the way you need to design your product strategy. It is therefore crucial that you need to listen to what they have to say.  The automated Web extraction solutions with their ability to tap into several relevant sources help you to get access to customer sentiments and feedback on your products and services. This is a vital aspect in your organization's growth as it helps you to tackle three important factors:

  • Assimilate positive or negative vibes on your newly launched product or service which might require you to revisit your product strategy
  • Provide immediate attention to issues, if any, with any particular product
Create a trend of aggregated customer sentiments, for analysis