Free Web Scraping Software & Extension for Non-programmers

Are you looking forward to scraping data from the Internet but lacks the financial commitment to pay for a paid tool and the technical skills to develop web scrapers? Come in now and discover the free web scrapers in the market.

Best Web Scrapers

If you have been reading blog posts on this blog for a while now, you will know that I do not support users making use of some tools and services for free and this is not unconnected to the fact that free services can be unreliable and comes with limitations that will make them work inefficiently. Being that as it may, we cannot deny the fact that not everyone reading our blog posts have the financial capabilities to afford all of the tools and services we discuss, and as such, reading our blogs will be a waste of time for such people.

It is because of this set of people that we wrote this post. This article will be used to discuss the web scrapers you can use without any monetary commitment. Some of them are not actually free like others – the free plan might just be a free trial plan for testing, but depending on the requirements of your job, it may or may not work for you. The bottom line with using a free web scraper is, you have to learn to be comfortable with the limitations that come with them else, opting for their plans will be the best for you.


What is a Web Scraper?

Web scrapers are automation bots that crawl web pages and extract data from them through a process known as web scraping. They automate the whole process of gathering information online and remains the only viable tool for gathering large amounts of data online.

With a web scraper, you can extract data from millions of pages within a few hours; this is not achievable using manual data collection processes. However, they are only useful when a website does not provide an API or the API provided comes with a limitation.

Read more: Best Web Scraping Tools – Ultimate Web Scraper List!


Top 10 Free Web Scrapers

When it comes to the number of free web scrapers in the market, you need to know that there are many of them, but the question is – are they all worth your time? No! In fact, you need to know only a few of the free tools in the market can actually serve your purpose the way you want it. Let take a look at some of the top free web scrapers in the market right now.


ParseHub

Parsehub Logo

  • Completely Free: Desktop app free
  • Free Trial Days: Free
  • Platform Support: Cloud, Desktop
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel, JSON

ParseHub is arguably the best free web scraper you can get in the market right now in terms of ease of usage and coming with advanced features. Unlike in the case of most free web scrapers that their free plan is for a stipulated timeframe, ParseHub is completely free if you install their software on your system – and they support Windows, Mac, and Linux.

ParseHub is a visual web scraping tool that what’s required of you is a point and clicks data set training on the required data, and the software will get them scraped for you after specifying the data. They have paid plans which are available in their cloud-based scraper.

Parsehub Overview


Octoparse

Octoparse Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: 14 days of free trials
  • Platform Support: Cloud, Desktop
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel, JSON, MySql, SQLServer

Octoparse is one of the leading paid cloud-based web scraping tools. They have got a free plan that allows you to use their service by running a local copy of their web scraper on your system. This free plan allows you to crawl unlimited number of pages and even two concurrent local runs.

It is perfect for small and simple web scraping tasks. Octoparse is easy to use, and in just a few steps, you are on your way of converting a full website into a structured spreadsheet. It deals with all kinds of websites, including JavaScript featured websites. However, you have to provide proxies yourself.

Octoparse Overview


Web Scraper Extension

webscraper io

  • Completely Free: Browser extensions are free
  • Free Trial Days: Browser extensions are free – no days attached
  • Platform Support: Cloud, browser extensions
  • Data Output Form: CSV, XLSX, JSON

Webscraper.io provides two web scraping tools for web scrapers – browser extensions and their cloud-based solution. The Web Scraper browser extensions available for both Chrome and Firefox are free and perfectly built for the modern web. They can handle JavaScript execution such as triggering and waiting for Ajax requests, page scrolling, and even pagination handling, among other things. It provides a point and clicks interface where you configure the scraper by click on the required data. With this tool, just like the ones above, you do not require a coding skill to scrape.

webscraper overview

Read more: The best web scraper chrome extension.


Helium Scraper

Helium Scraper Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: 10 days of full features
  • Platform Support: Desktop
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel

Helium Scraper is not a free web scraper. However, it provides a fully functional 10 days of free trials for businesses to try out their service before making a monetary commitment. Because the scraper attached to the free trial is fully functional, it makes perfect sense that it is one of the best web scrapers you can use for free. It is packed with a good number of amazing features you will like which includes fast extraction of data, it makes use of SQLite which can hold up to 140 terabytes, allows you to schedule scraping tasks, and export the scraped data in popular formats such as CSV, JSON, and Excel, among others.

Helium Scraper Overview


ScrapeStorm

Scrapestorm Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: Starter plan is free with limitations
  • Platform Support: Desktop
  • Data Output Form: TXT, CSV, Excel, JSON, MySQL, Google Sheets, etc.

If the experience of the team is anything to go by, then ScrapeStorm should be top on the list. You know why? It was built by an ex-Google crawler team. ScrapeStorm requires no coding skills, as it is meant to be a visual web scraping tool. One interesting thing about ScrapeStorm is that it makes use of Artificial Intelligence to identify data making manual identification unnecessary in many use cases. ScrapeStorm automatically identifies images, prices, contact details, links, form, and lists, among other datasets. It also supports simulation operations when training the software in cases where automatic identification of data does not work.


Outwit Hub

Outwit Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: Not stated
  • Platform Support: Desktop
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel, JSON

Outwit Hub is a downloadable software that you can install and scrape data from web pages. It actually comes in 4 plans – light, pro, expert, and enterprise edition. The light plan comes completely free but comes with some limitations. Even with the limitations, Outwit Hub light version is still very much a great tool for those without a budget but still need to make use of a web scraper. Outwit Hub can help you turn a web page into a structured database of data you can export into popular file formats such as a spreadsheet, CSV, and many others. There’s no doubt saying Outwit Hub is a powerful tool – but its powers are unleashed fully in its paid plan.


SimpleScraper

Simplescraper Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: Chrome extension free
  • Platform Support: Cloud, Chrome extension
  • Data Output Form: JSON

SimpleScraper is another browser extension that can be said to be one of the top free web scrapers in the market. SimpleScraper is available as a Chrome extension, and you can install it and start scraping data and turning a website into an API. SimpleScraper is built for the modern web, and as such, you do not have anything to worry about when it comes to rendering and executing JavaScript. Aside from modern websites, SimpleScraper has also been found to worry excellently well on old websites. SimpleScraper makes the whole process of scraping websites easy, fast, and stress-free – at no financial cost.

SimpleScraper


Scraper

Scraper Logo

  • Completely Free: Yes
  • Free Trial Days: completely free
  • Platform Support: Chrome extension
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel, JSON

Scraper is a very basic and simple web scraper developed as a Chrome extension. Unlike the other web scrapers discussed above, it is unpopular and does not even have a website of its own. This is not unconnected to the fact that it is a one-man project with little attention given to it. Haven said that you need to know that it is still one of the most popular web scrapers available as a Chrome extension. Scraper wasn’t made for beginners as you are required to know XPath well to be able to make use of this tool – but if you do, you will find it to be very easy.


Diffbot Automatic APIs

Diffbot Automatic APIs Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: 14 days
  • Platform Support: Cloud
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel, JSON

Diffbot is not a free tool, but it comes with 14 days limited free trial plan you can use for your web scraping task. There’s something unique about Diffbot Automatic APIs – it does not require site-specific training for it to function. This is because it makes use of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to detect required data and extract them accordingly.

Without setting manual rules, their Automatic APIs will retrieve and clean data for you. Some of the domains Diffbot works perfectly for include products, videos, online discussions, and articles. It is fast, efficient, and reliable on any website you can think of.

Diffbot Automatic APIs Overview


Import.io

Import Logo

  • Completely Free: No
  • Free Trial Days: 1000 URLs per month in each month
  • Platform Support:Cloud
  • Data Output Form: CSV, Excel

If you are not looking forward to scraping more than 1000 web pages per month then, you can make use of Import.io, a popular cloud-based web scraping solution. Import.io has got its foot deeply rooted in the web scraping business, and their web scrapers have proven to work quite great. They have been built with modern websites in mind, and as such, they are perfect for JavaScript-heavy websites as well as old websites with HTML and CSS only. Import.io is quick and easy to use.

Import Overview


Conclusion

From the list above, you can tell that even with the limitations that come with most of them, almost all of the free web scrapers discussed above can be used for small-scale scraping projects without any major problem. However, if your target is scraping on a large scale, then you need to be ready to cough out some money for that as free scrapers can be inefficient for that.