When you copy-paste some information from a website, you are technically doing the same thing a web scraper does. The main difference is that you do it on a smaller scale. Web scraping uses automation tools to get info from hundreds, millions, or billions of data points. The web scraping process is a bit complex since the scraper loads a batch of URLs and then runs a code for the selected web pages.
Simple Ways to Learn Web Scraping
But first, is it easy to learn web scraping ? Web scraping may seem complicated for some individuals, more so if you have never done any coding before. However, there are various tools that enable you to scrape data without any coding skills. You can easily learn basic, intermediate, as well as advanced web scraping methods to extract info from any website without knowing how to code.
Because of its complicated nature, learning web scraping might be difficult. That’s why, as an amateur, it is imperative to know the right resources through which you can learn how to scrape a website easily. In this post, you’ll find adequate resources to master the trade. Let’s dive in.
Online courses are one of the best and simple ways to learn anything. There are multiple excellent web scraping courses available where you can learn all the basics and more. The advantage of online courses is that you can find them for free or at a lower cost than other learning methods. Some online courses you should check out include Web Scraping with Python by DataCamp and Web Scraping in Node.js by Udemy.
These days, web scraping has become paramount for companies across all industries. As a result, various blogs have emerged. These blogs have informative resources that explain web scraping in layman’s terms. Also, most of these blogs aim to help beginners, but some contain valuable information that can benefit experts as well.
These blogs are usually free and updated regularly as per the changes in the web scraping sector. You can start by checking out the IPRoyal blog. The company has a very informative web scraping Python tutorial that can help you. Other resources to check out are the ScrapingBee Blog and the Octoparse Web Scraping Blog.
Books are another great resource for learning new things. You can use them as reference material, and they provide more detail on a topic. Multiple books can be helpful if you are interested in learning web scraping. One good thing about books is that you can read at your own pace and refer back to them whenever you need help. Some popular books on web scraping are:
- Web Scraping with Python by Richard Lawson
- Web Scraping with PHP by Matthew Turland
- Webbots, Spiders, and Screen Scrapers by Michael Schrenk
- Web Scraping with Python: Collecting More Data from the Modern Web by Ryan Mitchell
Forums are also an excellent way to learn from individuals with immense web scraping experience. You can ask questions, get suggestions, and share your experiences on such forums. Browse forums such as Reddit and Quora to learn about web scraping from gurus across the globe.
Watching online videos is another wonderful way to learn a new subject. It enables a learner to get a visual understanding, which might be an easier way to retain information. With a video, you can watch a tutorial multiple times to gain a better understanding of the process. There are various videos on YouTube and channels dedicated to web scraping. To start, you can search for these videos:
- Web Scraping with Python by Edureka
- Introduction to Web Scraping with Python and Beautiful Soup by Data Science Dojo
- What is Web Scraping, and How it Works by ParseHub
Even though web scraping is complicated, it can be easy to learn once you identify the right resources from which you can acquire skills. You might prefer videos to books and vice versa. However, it is a good idea to learn from various sources and through different mediums, as you will get different perspectives. With enough effort and the right resources, you can quickly learn how to write your own data scraper. Start your journey today!
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