Competitor Price Tracking Using Data Scraping
When it comes to online shopping, the comparison is key to finding the best product. Online customers jump from one website to another in hopes of finding quality products at reasonable prices.
And this is one of the reasons why e-retailers are constantly monitoring the competitor's price. Accordingly, they set the prices to maintain dominance in the market.
Even though most retailers focus on offering better quality while ensuring a decent user experience, a good pricing strategy definitely succeeds them all. Consumers are always looking for better deals and regular discounts. They scour through a handful of sites and settle for one that suits them the best. And to become the e-retailer that asks for prices that are attractive enough for the customers, you need to employ data scraping or price scraping.
In this article, we will briefly explain everything from what is price scraping, its need for your business, benefits, and how does it work. So, sit back and indulge in this informative blog.
What is price scraping?
Price scraping is a process of using price scraper bots to obtain an idea of the competitor's pricing strategy.
By tracking the competitor's price from the web, sectors like e-commerce, hospitality and finance industries leverage a lot.
For instance, let's talk about Amazon. They keep track of pricing from competitive marketplaces like Walmart. As soon as it notices even a little fluctuation in the price of Walmart's product, Amazon smartly undercuts the competition without wasting extra minutes.
Walmart, having brick-and-mortar locations lack enough resources to make the adjustment in pricing labels frequently, therefore making the shoppers obfuscated.
This is one of the reasons why people get better deals on Amazon.
Why should you scrape prices?
If you consider the global e-commerce market, you will be surprised to know that there are millions of stores. In fact, the number keeps on rising with new businesses being added on a daily basis. And with the growth, the competition keeps getting fierce.
The finance and travel industry suffers the most due to these ever-changing prices.
By price tracking using data scraping software, the business gets to understand the market dynamics, therefore attracting price-sensitive buyers. Usually, this is done by setting the prices of services and products way below baseline prices in the marketplace.
Manually tracking the prices from thousands of websites, then accessing it and optimizing your own prices doesn't make any sense. It is a neither practical nor feasible procedure.
Web scarping leverages the abundant data available to the e-commerce owners by using some type of automation. By properly following the entire procedure, the business owners gain an understanding of how to influence consumer buying decisions while optimizing the revenue.
Benefits of price scraping
Competitor analysis in real-time
By using competitor price monitoring software, businesses can analyse the prices and adjust their own price margin at the right time. Hence, improving the sales and increasing the revenue.
But what happens when the prices keep fluctuating regularly? For instance, flight prices, Sensex etc. A normal bot is capable of capturing pricing data from ample resources, but these prices aren't updated every second. This means the need for real-time price scarping increases.
With real-time price scarping, there is no delay in updating the data. In fact, there are instantaneous responses within seconds and even quicker, therefore more efficient analysis. Similarly, there is no need for downloading and storing data because the price is scarped and displayed in real-time.
Determine pricing strategy
Consumers tend to go through hundreds, if not thousands, of products and prices before they actually end up on your website.
And in order to convert these consumers, you need to have an imperative pricing strategy in place. The more effective your price strategy is, the better your business profits and revenue. Unless you have a monopoly, you need to be aware of competition so you can set the pricing strategy right. Typically, consumers follow, "if you are getting it cheaper, but it" approach.
By scraping the competitor's prices, you can paint a bigger picture of the strategy your competitor may be undertaking. This way, it becomes easy for you to determine your own. The notion behind pricing strategies is to attract buyers by providing them lower prices on services and products than competitors.
Knowing what prices your competitor offers is crucial. This is because, besides helping you to determine optimal pricing, it also improves brand reputation as well as has a huge impact on your market share. All of these factors help in enhancing customer loyalty towards the brand.
Every business owner wants to know how the customer thinks and what they like. This way, selling the products to the consumer must have become way easier.
Well, data analytics does the job of understanding the consumer for you.
When you use data scraping in conjunction with analytics and reporting software, you can easily analyse the results of the pricing strategy down the line. Likewise, don't forget to compare your strategy with the competitor's to check what things they are doing differently. When you acquire such knowledge, it becomes easy to cater to the consumer's needs and be ahead of the competition.
For instance, analytics can be used to track customer's shopping patterns. This means you will know what they shop for and what they have in their shopping cart. So, as soon as the prices of products considered by your customer drops, you can send emails so they can jump to claim the deal.
Similarly, you can create reports on competitor margins, price trends, demand trends, etc. You can also draw historical data to scrutinize future trends and predict future demands.
How to scrape pricing data for competition price tracking?
You can easily utilize any competitor price tracking tool that meets your expectations. Start by sharing the competitor catalogue URLs and the data points that you wish to extract.
Data points can be anything from the product name to product ID, product price and even product variant information.
Here is how scraping work
The pricing data is extracted by setting up web scrapers to obtain data from the product pages at a pre-established frequency.
However, programming the web crawler can be technically challenging as it requires coding skills and continuous monitoring. So, it is best to work with an expert who can keep the tab of everything even if there are changes in website structures.
Web crawlers set up
The source pages are evaluated to locate the HTML tags that enclosed the needed data points. Once identified, these tags get coded as per the crawling setup. And once the web crawling setup is deployed, it starts obtaining and storing the data into a dump file.
Data normalization and data delivery
The accumulated dump file is then processed using a cleansing and structuring setup to generate clean data. This processing also gets rid of unwanted HTML tags and text that gets scarped along with the important data.
Similarly, processing also offers the data a proper structure, therefore making it useful for further analysis and storage in the database systems. On the completion of configuration, the crawling setup can proceed to offer pricing data feeds at specified intervals.
Over to you
In order to survive the ever-increasing competition, having a correct pricing structure is pivotal. It not only will boost your sales significantly but also help you gain a competitive edge in the market.
However, the key to success in e-commerce price tracking is working with a reliable scraping service provider like Wersel. Our price intelligence and web scraping solutions can help you obtain a holistic view of the ever-changing online market. This way you can keep close tabs on the competitors and help in generating strategic planning to satisfy customers and outpace competition. Get the best competitor price tracking software to leverage your business and help you obtain better ROI, only with Wersel.