Web scraping is the act of fetching data from a third party website by downloading and parsing the HTML code to extract data. The web scraping process consists of 1) downloading HTML content of a page, 2) parsing/extracting the data, and 3) saving it into a database for further analysis or use.

Web Scraping Use Cases

Below are a few industries where web scraping is often used:

  • News - You can synthesize information from articles on different news sources using extractive or abstractive summaries.
  • News Aggregators - You can aggregate articles from different sources such as Reddit, Twitter, The New Yorker, etc.
  • Real Estate - You can scrape Redfin or Zillow to create real-time information on housing prices.
  • Search Engines - Suppose you want to build an internal search engine for your organization. As a supplement to your internal documents, you might also want to scrape 3rd party data such as eBay listings or user profiles from LinkedIn.
  • Travel - You can scrape flight and hotel prices for comparison.
  • Online Shopping - Scrape product pages to monitor competitor prices.
  • Retail Banking - Aggregate information from various sources such as Mint.com, Credit Union, and E-Trade.
  • Data Journalism - LA-based Crosstown is a non-profit that uses data scraping to aggregate real-time data across different data sources to generate unique, data-driven stories.
  • Search Engine Optimization - Marketers can optimize SEO content by comparing similar articles found on Google Search results.
  • Market Research - Scrape social media sites to identify public opinion (aka sentiment analysis) for trading.
  • Lead Generation - Discover new prospects and partners by scraping content online.
  • Content Audits - Webmasters can create a sitemap or content audit by scraping pages.

DIY Scraping Libraries

If you are a developer who prefers to build and manage things yourself, then here are a few good libraries for NodeJS.


  • [NickJS](https://nickjs.org] - Headless browser automation library. This is a good substitute for CasperJS. It works on Google Headless, PhantomJS and CasperJS.
  • Google's Pupeteer - Node library which provides a high-level API to control Chrome or Chromium over the DevTools Protocol.
  • ZombieJS - Insanely fast, full-stack, headless browser testing using NodeJS.
  • SlimmerJS - A scriptable browser like PhantomJS, based on Firefox.
  • CasperJS - CasperJS is a navigation scripting & testing utility for PhantomJS and SlimerJS. Deprecated.
  • PhantomJS - Deprecated.

Managed Scapers

Web scraping is somewhat of an art so if you're not ready to manage recaptcha, proxy IP's, "User Agent" and more, try these managed services.

More Managed Scrapers

Here are a few more tools in no particular order.

Even More Resources

You can always find new web scrapers on Product Hunt.