The quest for real-time data is a struggle for many digital businesses. This data determines the success of both current and future business decisions.
A significant component of this highly sought, real-time data is pricing information. This is because it is a critical factor in business strategy and one way to win customers.
As a business operating in the online space, you need to price your products and services appropriately. But, with hundreds of other digital firms making the internet their home on the daily, how do you remain competitive? How do you find out what prices your competition is charging?
To figure this out, let’s delve deeper into scraping proxies to discover why price scraping is on an all-time high. We’ll also find out how your business can leverage on price intelligence data to retain its market share.
What are Scraping Proxies?
So what is web scraping and why do you need proxies? Scraping proxies help streamline online data gathering by allowing you to bypass certain restrictions. They act as intermediaries between you and the web and mask your IP address. They do this by passing your requests through the server such that any website you access through a proxy only sees the IP address belonging to the proxy server.
Price data scraping is a vital part of this process whereby bots extract pricing data from e-commerce websites and copy it for later analysis.
Scraping proxies protect you against IP blocking and cloaking, which prevent successful price scraping. While IP blocking prevents connection to the target server, IP cloaking provides fabricated data upon detecting screen scraping.
The most ideal web scraping proxies are residential proxies. These do not share a subnetwork; hence cannot be blocked. Data center proxies, on the other hand, are susceptible to cloaking, since they share a subnetwork.
Rotating residential proxies are even better since they rotate the IP addresses and assign random proxies with each request. This way, the scrapers cannot be detected. Moreover, each IP address features a unique, real device; hence the proxy network cannot be banned or blocked.
Why Scrape Prices?
Today’s online shopper is faced with a myriad of options. The ability to compare prices online has also resulted in a price-sensitive consumer. Add increased competition and digital businesses must come up with ingenious ways to remain relevant to their customers.
Before making a purchase, consumers compare prices on different online platforms. Therefore, businesses need to gather intelligence on their competition. This includes information on:
- Pricing strategy
- Special offers
- Product listings
…among many others.
This intelligence is useful for marketing since you can use it to target customers with different price ranges. You can also aggregate price comparisons from different websites to assist your customers in making informed purchase decisions.
How to Extract Your Competitors’ Prices
Here are the steps to take when extracting competitor prices:
- Define your competition based on your industry
- Start data collection
- Adjust your prices accordingly
The challenge with the above process is that it doesn’t consider price fluctuations. This is because it provides static price data. The amount of data scrapped is also overwhelming and difficult to analyze. To address this shortcoming, you need to use price scraping tools.
Once you list your competitors and the product prices you want to track, the software automatically tracks your competitors’ prices. This enables you to monitor multiple product prices across thousands of websites in real-time.
The Benefits of Price Scraping
Price scraping is beneficial to your business because it:
- Enables you to systematically extract and analyze real-time pricing data from millions of price points
- Provides insights into your competitors’ pricing strategy including offers and price increments
- Allows you to make well-informed business decisions on your pricing strategy
- Helps you to understand market dynamics, woo price-sensitive customers, and ultimately beat the competition.
- Enhances brand reputation and market share while positively impacting customer loyalty
- Provides valuable data for analyzing trends, forecasting future trends and helps in brand monitoring for price compliance
Tips on Choosing the Best Scraping Proxies
When choosing your scraping proxy, keep the following key points in mind:
- Get a scraping proxy offering real-time data, an unlimited number of connections, threads, and locations
- Opt for scraping proxies that provide reliability, a high uptime, low blocks and can be customized
- Look for a service provider offering 24/7 customer support
- Ensure that you choose a legitimate and reputable service provider
To remain competitive in the online space, you need to come up with a pricing strategy that incentivizes consumers to choose your brand instead of the competitor’s. Also, monitor your competitors’ pricing strategy and the impact of your prices on sales.
Price scraping allows you to influence consumer-buying decisions, thus optimize revenue. Remember, your customers keep themselves updated with real-time pricing information. They are looking for the best quality at the lowest price.
Don’t lose them to competitors. Use scraping proxies to maintain your competitive edge, meet customer needs, and keep ahead of the competition.