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How to avoid web scraping blocks and bans

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By the one and only
May 18, 2022

For the best results from your data extraction campaign, it's important to know how to carry out web scraping without being blocked. Scraping blocks can be triggered in a variety of different ways, but they're usually a website's method of limiting who can use their site.

 An Introduction to Scraping Bans

Scraping bans and blocks are triggered in a surprising number of ways. You can read more about the methods used, especially by the big e-commerce websites, in our guide to the Zyte API Smart Browser.

 Some common causes of scraping blocks include:

  • Captchas and other 'humanity' tests
  • WebRTC and canvas fingerprinting
  • TCP/IP fingerprinting, geofencing and IP blocking
  • Human observation methods, e.g. mouse tracking

A comprehensive anti-ban web scraping solution not only manages these techniques, but will also inform you of any scraping blocks it encounters, so you can take action to avoid large-scale scraping bans later in your campaign.

 How Proxies Allow Web Scraping Without Block Errors

Proxies are a powerful way to enable web scraping without block errors or permanent bans. A proxy is an invisibility cloak for your IP address, so you can connect to the same website multiple times without getting blocked.

If any one proxy address is blocked, you can continue to connect via other IPs, so you can continue web scraping without ban problems becoming permanent. Read more about Why You Need Proxies for Web Scraping.

A very basic explanation of why proxies are important for anti-ban web scraping campaigns is that they allow you to connect to the same website many times from different IP addresses.

Without a proxy, you would connect 10-20 times per second from the one same IP address, which is very easy for servers to identify as automated scraping and automatically block your connection. 

Web Scraping Without Being Blocked Using Proxies

If you'd like to know more about effective proxy management and how proxies can allow you to carry out large-scale web scraping without being blocked, you can find more information about Zyte Smart Proxy Manager.

It's a powerful proxy management platform that allows you to quickly offload the admin from managing your proxy pool — often one of the most time-consuming (and therefore financially costly) parts of the process.

With Zyte Smart Proxy Manager, you can construct anti-block web scraping campaigns without this additional cost, giving you faster, better results from your web scraping without block errors or unnecessary admin burdens.

Ultimately, it's an anti-ban web scraping solution that puts profits first, for a much more streamlined admin without all the management costs associated with some other proxy platforms.

Alternatives to Data Extraction Without Block Errors 

Web scraping without ban errors is challenging. In some cases - especially if you've decided to use Zyte data extraction tools to carry out your campaign yourself - you might find it's faster and easier to target websites with less sophisticated authentication and detection features.

By scraping data from publicly accessible sources, you can build your dataset faster with fewer block errors to work around. You can always include those more robustly defended websites later, if you think it's worth it.

Talk to Zyte About Block-Free Web Scraping Today 

If you'd like to know more about any of the above, please contact Zyte today. Perhaps you'd like to learn more about the importance of proxies for ban-free web scraping? Or maybe you've had website data scraping campaigns in the past that failed due to blocks and bans? 

We welcome all enquiries, big and small, and we can arrange a free initial consultation to understand what you need from your website scraping campaign - and any experience you've had in the past of being blocked by your competitors during data extraction.

From there, we can build an ethical, responsible, and successful campaign that gives you the data you need, with comprehensive results free from block and ban errors.

Written by Colm Kenny
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