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Web Scraping Vs. Web Crawling: What Is The Difference?

Although different types of data collecting have become common in recent years, we still have a lot of questions about Big data to answer. Today we are going to explain the difference between scraping and crawling.

Are scraping and crawling the same?

Not exactly. Although both scraping and crawling deal with massive amounts of information, their aims are different.

Web scraping is an approach used to retrieve information from different sources. It also includes saving data to local computers in differenteasy-to-use formats. The tools for web scraping are called web scrapers, for example,, which provides their clients with a wide range of web scraping services, including all technical issues and cleaning data.

Web crawling is similar to a spider activity, however, it is performed on the Internet. The key principle is simple: it visits a website and verifies all web pages to compose entries for search engine index. The special tools for crawling are called web spiders or crawlers.

Crawlingvs. scraping

  1. Scraping data does not necessarily involve the web, as it can be performed on information from local machines or databases. Crawling, on the other hand, means you are working with the web data.
  2. Data de-duplication is an essential component of data crawling. It is done to keep the customers comfortable by not flooding their machines. However, de-duplication is not necessary when it comes to web scraping.
  3. Scraping doesn’t visit all the pages of the site for data, while the main purpose of crawling is to check each page, until the end.
  4. Web scraping is performed on both large and small scales. When it comes to web crawling, it is generally used on a large scale.

While web scraping and web crawling may sound similar, we still have some differences to pay attention to.