What is a Data Scraper? Let’s say you’re an IT professional. You have a lot of information about your company’s infrastructure – a lot of data – and you want to get it all in one place for easy access. Well, there’s good news!
Here’s what I did and here’s what you should do: I took a quick scan of the Internet and found a few basic Web scraping tutorials, and followed the directions, watching the video. Then I got to work. It’s pretty simple!
The first step, in my experience, is to find some Data Source (Google, MSN) for your business. For me, this was easy: Google search results API. If you use this method, you should be able to see any other search results from Google API. Go to “API Reference” and find your company. To see the list of companies, there are only two things you need to do:
Create a new page for your company’s API at Google Webmaster Tools. In the “API Access” tab, click “ADD”. Find “Search Result Scraper” and fill in the name for your Data Scraper. Copy this URL.
Now go to a public directory and find a list of other companies. There are a lot of directories out there, so you’ll probably have a hard time finding a list. You can try Google Webmaster Tools or Directory Scraper.
Now take the URL for your Data Scraper (there is a free one you can use) and submit it to these sites. This is usually easy, but if you know anything aboutHTML or Ajax, it may take a while to submit your Data Scraper. So don’t freak out!
After submitting your scraper, you’re done! You should be able to find all your data in the response of the search engines! What a relief!
Here’s how to get your web scraper to crawl the google scraping search results:
How To Use Your Web Scraper to Grab Data From Google Search Results API: Basically, you just need to create a new page at the Google Webmaster Tools and follow the directions to add the site. You should be able to find your scraper in the search results if it worked.
If it didn’t work, try to get the URL for your scraper and post it to directories, where it will hopefully end up. Once it works, you’ll be able to set it up to crawl the Google search results API and keep your data up to date, all in one place!
From there, you can look up various data – both locally on your own system and remotely – and display it on a single page. For example, if you’re running an online store, you might want to display the sales numbers on your website. Or if you’re running a service company, you could display the number of calls an hour, or even minute, per day.
With some training, you can build a scraper that works like a well oiled machine. Best of all, if you want to scrape Google’s API, you don’t need to be a genius programmer.