Daniel - October 1, 2021
In this article, I’ll be showing you how to scrape data from BBB.
BBB (Better Business Bureau) is a company that fosters marketplace trust. The company was founded in 1912 and has been operating for over 100 years now. On their official website – www.bbb.org – you can find ratings and information about companies.
Using the website is simple. You can browse through different business categories to find a reliable business to patronize. The website features both accredited and non-accredited businesses. You can easily sort the list to view only accredited businesses.
BBB uses a school-grade type rating system. Businesses can be rated with an A, A+, B and so on until F. Only businesses that meet the BBB Standards For Trust get accredited. As of July 2020, the BBB platform had accredited about 400,000 businesses in North America.
BBB is very popular in the United States. Notably, the company is most renowned in New York with more than a million unique users every year.
Scraping BBB is an ideal way to get information about businesses in North America, most especially the United States and Canada. You can get company-specific information including business name, services, phone numbers, address, phone numbers, and more.
This information can be very valuable to various business applications. You can use them to generate leads or make better business decisions. For example, from the data, you can know what businesses are dominant in specific areas, what businesses are scarce, who are your competitors, and more.
Normally, you’ll just browse the BBB website to view the data you need or even copy and paste. Let’s assume you want to access all businesses in New York accredited on BBB; it’ll take you serious time and energy and you may never cover all.
That’s why web scraping is ideal. It’s a better, faster, and more efficient means of extracting data from websites.
To scrape data from BBB, you need two important web tools – a web scraping bot and a proxy. The web scraping bot performs the job of a crawler and scraper. It crawls the BBB website to identify the specific category you’re interested in and extracts afterwards.
There are various web scraping bots on the internet hence you don’t have to design one yourself. Also, the bots are relatively easy to use so specifying the category you want to extract isn’t difficult.
However, the problem with the web scraping bot is that it can get blocked. Websites aren’t friendly to bots as most cyber attackers use bot to launch their attacks. BBB may not only block your bot but also blacklist your IP address so you can no longer access the website.
This is why you need the second tool – a proxy. A proxy can mask your real IP and make it impossible for websites to block your bot. Proxies feature thousands and millions of IP addresses.
You can prevent BBB from blocking your web scraping bot by rotating IPs. That way, none of your IP will be blacklisted.
Without the best proxies, you cannot scrape BBB as your bot will always get banned. When it comes to proxies, you can choose between residential and datacenter proxies. Both have their pros and cons but residential proxies are more reliable.
Nevertheless, the best proxies for BBB scraping have more to do with where you purchase your proxies. You can purchase a residential proxy from an unreliable proxy provider which won’t work.
If you want the best, I recommend that you buy your proxies from ProxyRack. ProxyRack is a renowned proxy provider and you can purchase both residential and datacenter proxies. Check out the options below:
Unmetered Residential Proxies: Starting from $80
Premium GEO Residential Proxies: Starting from $14.95
Private Residential Proxies: Starting from $99.95
USA Rotating Datacenter Proxies: Starting at $120
Mixed Rotating Datacenter Proxies: Starting at $120
Shared Datacenter Proxies: Starting at $49
Canada Rotating Proxies: Starting at $65
Now, you should be able to scrape data from BBB with the right tools.