As economic uncertainty and budget cutbacks persist, the demand for public web data scraping is set to continue growing.
Why? As businesses navigate the economic downturn, there is a need for quality and reliable data to help them make successful business decisions since there is very little room for error. Read on to find out more about the three biggest web data trends in 2023.
- 1. The fight for an open market
The fight to keep the public web openly available is relentless. Although public web data is designed to be openly available to the public, the reality is that the big companies are trying to gatekeep it. This is because they want to restrict certain, mostly public, data to one-up the competition.
A prime example is the travel industry, which is notoriously competitive. Data shows that the travel industry was amongst the top three markets to have expanded its reliance on web data, followed by retail and banking in 2022. In reaction to this, competitors across many industries have begun protecting their data, although this data has been openly available until now. This prevents open market competition, which in the end, can have a direct negative impact on the public.
We can expect the fight for an open market to continue in 2023 and beyond. Businesses, such as the world’s biggest tech companies, will aim to limit access to public data. But public data is a powerful tool and should be used for public good. The question that should interest all of us is: Does public data belong in the hands of the people or in the hold of private enterprises? Taking away freedom of information means no free or transparent market competition.
- A crackdown on counterfeit goods
Brands have always struggled with counterfeit goods. The reselling of stolen or replicas of goods can have a negative impact on a brand’s revenue, reputation, and growth. As unregulated marketplaces on the internet continue to grow, so will the problem of counterfeit goods.
For example, a designer brand that relies on exclusivity will be affected by the excess supply of counterfeit replicas. Therefore, to protect themselves, designer brands are turning to public web scraping to automatically and routinely conduct checks to find counterfeited goods listed across the internet that use their name or likeness. Public web scraping helps them identify stolen or fake goods online and the fraudsters selling them.
In 2023, we expect this issue will affect two main networks. Firstly, legitimate marketplaces, which still unknowingly supply a huge amount of counterfeit and stolen goods. Secondly, smaller ‘dropshipping’ channels that are solely intent on manufacturing products to the same design specs but at significantly lower costs.
The issue is that consumers can buy counterfeit goods as easily as the real thing. In some cases, it’s even easier to buy counterfeit goods. Instead of seeking them out at marketplaces, these fake goods are now online and able to be bought within a few clicks from anywhere at any time, and this is directly affecting the revenue of luxury brands. This is why we’ll see a much greater focus on tracking these types of sites and counterfeit branded products this year, as well as the use of public web scraping tools that help brands recognise and stop these kinds of purchases.
- Economic uncertainty
It’s no secret that businesses around the world have been tightening budgets as they prepare for an impending recession. However, these businesses also recognise that public web data has become essential for their operations and their fast decision-making systems and processes.
Public web data also allows them to remain competitive in the market. In today’s eCommerce-dominated world, customers can easily seek out the cheapest prices offered by their direct competitors. Therefore, businesses will be focused on finding a way to cost-effectively balance their pricing strategies by frequently accessing market-relevant data. This could be the crucial difference between consumers remaining loyal to a brand or switching to a cheaper competitor.
So, despite the economic uncertainty we face, businesses can access web data in a manner that allows them to remain adaptable while cutting costs.
What to expect
From economic turbulence to the battle over an open market, the year has gotten off to a challenging start. However, businesses across every industry already acknowledge the value of public web data and should look to utilise web data to boost their chances of success in 2023. The biggest challenge will be rapidly addressing various large-scale commercial pressures with fast and precise decision-making.
About the Author
Erez Naveh is SVP of Product at Bright Data. Bright Data is the world’s largest data collection platform dedicated to helping all businesses view the Internet just like their consumers and potential consumers do each and every day. We help global brands gather publicly available web data in an ethical manner and transform unstructured data (e.g., HTML) into structured data (e.g., xl). Working with over 15,000 customers, including market-leaders from the Fortune 500 space, the company’s first-of-its-kind data collection platform enables clients to view the internet in complete transparency, no matter where they are based in the world.
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