JavaScript, the computer language widely used to create interactive web pages, is not always obvious to readers of the Web scraping JavaScript. Even if you have already written a whole bunch of code for your sites, such as forms and shopping carts, you may not know whether or not the “just enough” HTML tags and JavaScript snippets that you’ve included are enough for your site. It can lead to frustrating, even annoying visitors who are then quickly turned off by your site, as well as turning off your ability to sell products and services on the site. How is this so?


Usage of Javascript

JavaScript is not like HTML in that it doesn’t give site owners or viewers an easy way to tell whether or not a page is complete. JavaScript tends to be used inside page content instead of within script tags, and visitors should not be able to make sense of your site’s HTML code unless you have provided them with a way to see the page content quickly. HTML tends to be very hard to read, and visitors who are turned off by code have a tough time enjoying a site with any level of interactivity. (You know what I mean; all those Internet ads you see turn off most people.)

Web scraping tools

JavaScript, and the scripts that make it run, tend to be large files. It means that even if a visitor to your site happens to have a prolonged Internet connection, your script will load before the average person would. It can cause frustration for your visitors and leads many to click away from your site rather than reading your pages. Web scraping tools such as Joomla!, Drupal, PHP, Apache, MySQL, and others have been designed to help web admins, and visitors alike make sense of large pieces of script code. It eliminates many of the frustrations and problems that come when scripts are written without being organized.

Navigate around Website

Web scraping allows visitors and web admins to quickly and easily navigate around the pages of a website. Because each scraped page is loaded in its window, making it incredibly easy for a user to skim through the pages and find the information they need quickly and efficiently. If the script is written with large amounts of code, it can be overwhelming to a user. Scripts for navigating websites have been standardized so that it’s much easier for a person to look at the page and figure out how to use it.

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Interactivity within the site

JavaScript is often used as a means of providing interactivity within the site. For example, an online merchant may provide a shopping cart option on their site. While some people may not feel comfortable giving their credit card information over the Internet, others will find it helpful. Using a scraper that can handle Ajax requests lets the user browse through the pages of a site, add items to their shopping cart, and then process the payment after clicking a link. The merchant doesn’t even have to write the script or concern themselves about the code.

Standard format

The standard format for web pages is HTML, although the scraper can change this format. Most scraper engines accept the HTML format because it’s simple and easy for a computer to read. It doesn’t matter what type of browser a person uses either. People who use computers of all kinds on the Internet will be able to view your site regardless of the operating system that they’re using. Even if you’re connected to a high-speed wireless connection, you can view the site. You don’t even need a plug-in to view the pages of a site.

Ajax requests

A good scraper should also be able to handle Ajax requests. This lets the user connect to the site through a browser, complete a form, and then submit the form again. A person doesn’t want to wait around for the pages to load when trying to complete a form on the site. By using a scraper that handles Ajax requests, visitors can satisfy their demands as fast as possible.


JavaScript scrappers are plentiful, but not all of them are created equal. Some scrapers are written in an amateurish style and won’t work at all on specific sites. Others are incredibly efficient and written by scrappers who understand how to use different scripting languages effectively. If you have particular web scrapbooking needs, then it’s a good idea to find a scraper that can work for your purposes.

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