A Complete Guide To Rotating Proxies For Automated Web Scraping

A Complete Guide To Rotating Proxies For Automated Web Scraping

Choosing the right proxy for your tasks might be overwhelming. With so many options available on the market, deciding which proxy type is the best can take hours of your time. While some people need proxies for security, others simply need proxies to complete various traffic-intensive tasks. At the end of the day — the use case is the most important aspect of choosing what type of proxies you need.

Today, we are looking at one of the most popular proxies types and use cases. A proxy type preferred by millions of users around the world that help them to collect large amounts of data faster.

So what are rotating proxies, and how can they help save time and worries when running automated web scraping tools?

What Is A Rotating Proxy?

Like any other proxy type, rotating proxies are an intermediate server between the user and the website. Rotating proxy type allows users to switch between different IP addresses from the provider’s pool. This process guarantees that when the user has their proxy on, even the most advanced anti-bot plugins won’t be able to identify that they are using scraping tools, treating them like a new user with every request.

Rotating proxies are considered more reliable than static ones as they can switch the IP addresses with every request, or if the user prefers, at their selected timeframe. Most providers allow sessions with the same rotating proxy for up to 30 minutes. However, they cannot guarantee that session with the same IP will last exactly as long as the user has chosen, as the residential IPs are tied to the real devices and their connectivity issues.

Why Is IP Address Rotation Important?

IP address is like an identity tool for every device. Just like we cannot walk around the store for hours without being suspicious, IP addresses cannot make too many requests to a website.

When the website system detects the IP address that performs frequent requests, it can be marked with an IP rate limitation. From having to enter CAPTCHAs with every page the user goes to getting blocked, there are a few unpleasant punishments the IP address can receive.

Users using rotating proxies for automated web scraping, market research, or other tasks can change their IP address to a vetted one from the giant IP pool.

How To Choose A Proxy For Web Scraping?

There are three main types of rotating proxies available. The use case is clear — web scraping, however, you should choose the proxy type that fits your project requirements and the budget. By visiting the most popular proxy providers, you can find these three rotating proxies:

  • Rotating residential proxies
  • Rotating mobile proxies
  • Rotating datacenter proxies

But really — what’s the difference? Read more about each of them and find the perfect match for your web scraping task:

Rotating residential proxies 

Residential proxies were the first ones to introduce the IP rotation feature. Residential proxies use real devices’ IP addresses (whether it’s a laptop or an iPad) and allow running web scraping tools with a high success rate. However, rotating residential proxies might face connectivity issues, and IP addresses might switch to another in the middle of the process.

Rotating mobile proxies 

Mobile proxies are treated as the ones with the best IP reputation. Rotating mobile proxies are extremely hard to detect as they are connected to real users using 3G or LTE networks. However, it is important to know that a mobile device connected to a WiFi network will be treated as a rotating residential proxy as it is going through an ISP (Internet Service Provider). Mobile proxies are often rather expensive so it might be out of the budget choice for a simple web scraping task.

Rotating datacenter proxies

Originating from Cloud Service Providers, rotating datacenter proxies are usually a shared pool of IP addresses. Users share the same IP address pool with a risk that the websites can blacklist some IP addresses due to violations. A shared pool is often more detectable and might not be the best fit for traffic-intensive web scraping tasks. Although there are dedicated datacenter proxies in the market, allowing users to access a dedicated IP pool and enjoy top-notch speed and stability, they have an expensive price tag, and most users cannot justify the price when using them for web scraping or multiple social media profiles management.

How To Perform Automated Web Scraping With Proxies?

If you managed to set up proxies for your devices, you probably wouldn’t experience any issues setting up an automated web scraping bot. However, there are a few ways to set up the scraper, and maybe you will find the one that saves you time.

  • Ready-to-use solutions are one of the easiest ways to extract information from various websites. If you are purchasing the proxies from a provider with web scraping tools, they can give you a great price on scraping services and an extensive knowledge library. There are web scraping tools that are easy to use, even for beginners — it only takes a few minutes to set up a scraper and a few more minutes to get the extracted information ready for cleaning up.
  • Code solutions may look like a more advanced way to run an automated web scraping bot. However, rotating proxies providers will help you get your bot up and running. If you experience any issues or have any technical questions, the provider’s support team will do their best to help you extract the data from various sources.
  • Third-party automated web scraping tools are the ones that have a running infrastructure but do not associate with your rotating proxies provider. Although purchasing automated web scraping tools from a different provider might be pricey, they can help you save a hassle when you need to complete the data collection task in the shortest period of time.

Bottom Line

In this article, we have talked about the most common rotating proxies and the techniques used for automated web scraping. You can choose from various proxy providers and get rotating proxies that fit your project scope and budget.

And the most important part — don’t think that proxy setup and automated web scraping are complicated. Yes, they require a little knowledge to get things started, but once you collect the base, you will save tons of time and money on that vital data that will help your project grow.

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