Top 10 Web Crawler Tools of 2022 (Online Free & Open-Source)

Do you want to know the top online web crawlers you can use to crawl web pages to collect the data you need? If you answer yes to this question, then you are on the right page as we will be describing some of the top web crawlers you can use in the market.

Top Online Web Crawler Tools


Overview of Web Crawler Tools


General Purpose Web Crawlers
  • 80Legs: Cloud-based tool – <Starts from $29 monthly> – Best Online Web Crawler
  • Sequentum: Cloud-based tool – <Starts from $15K monthly> – Premium Web Crawler for Enterprises
  • OpenSearchServer: Desktop-based tool – < Free to use> – Open-Source Crawler for Enterprise
  • Apache Nutch: Desktop-based tool – <Free to use> – Supports Customization and Extensions
  • StormCrawler: Desktop-based tool – <Free to use> – Best SDK for Low-Latency Web Crawlers
Specialized Web Crawlers
  • ScrapeBox: Desktop-based Software – <Starts from $97 – lifetime license> – Best for Search Engine Crawling
  • ScreamingFrog: Desktop-based Software – <Starts from $209 yearly> – Best for onsite SEO Crawling
  • AtomPark Email Extractor: Desktop-based Software – <Starts from $89 per license> – Best for Extracting Emails
  • ParseHub: Desktop-based tool – <Free with Paid premium support> – Best for Crawling news sites
  • HTTrack: Desktop-based Software – <Completely Free> – Best for Downloading Website for Offline Usage

Web crawlers are an important tool on the Internet today that imagining a world without them will make the Internet a different world to navigate. Web crawlers power search engines; are the brains behind web archives, help content creators find out their copy-righted content, and help website owners know which page on their site needs attention.

In fact, there’s a whole lot you can do with web crawlers that, without them, doing so will become practically impossible. As a marketer, you might have a need to make use of web crawlers at some point, especially if you need to collect data around the Internet. However, finding the right web crawler for your tasks can be difficult.

This is because, unlike web scrapers, that you can find many general-purpose web scrapers; you will need to dig deeper to be able to find web crawlers for your own use. This is because most of the popular web crawlers are usually specialized.

In this article, we will be highlighting some of the top web crawlers in the market that you can make use of to scrape data from the Internet. It might interest you to know that there are a good number of them that you can make use of for crawling websites on the Internet.


10 Best Web Crawling Tools & Software


General Purpose Online Web Crawlers


With general-purpose web crawlers, there are no limitations to the web pages you can crawl and the data you can harvest from them. In fact, if you are willing to build a search engine, a web screenshot or archive, or build a system that aggregates content from around the web, then using a general-purpose web crawler is the best option for you.

However, while they have an advantage of extensiveness in the area of usage, their general purpose nature makes them difficult to use when compared to the specialized web crawlers out there. Below are some of the top general-purpose web crawlers in the market right now.


80Legs — Best Online Web Crawler

80Legs for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Starts from $29 monthly for up to 100K URLs per crawl
  • Free Trials: Free limited plan available
  • Supported Platforms: Cloud

The 80Legs is a powerful platform for web scraping and crawling. The service does offer a professional data service too. In this article, our interest lies in their web crawling platform, which is one of the best web crawlers you can use to crawl any web page to get data of interest to you. The web crawling app offered by 80Legs uses a Javascript method which means that you can crawl all kinds of websites, including websites that depend on Javascript execution.

You can use a custom template or use the already-made templates on the platform. This web crawler is highly customizable, allowing you to provide seed URLs, configure the URLs to be followed, and the data to be collected on the pages visited.

80Legs basically does all of the heavy liftings for you. It provides and rotates proxies, automatically throttles crawl speed, de-duplicate crawled pages and does much more. The platform is built to scale and can handle your web crawling tasks at any scale. You can use their web crawler to scan a list of websites for specific information, scrape content from a single site, and collect links from web pages.


Sequentum — Premium Web Crawler

Sequentum for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Starts from $15K monthly
  • Free Trials: Only Demo available
  • Supported Platforms: Cloud

The Sequentum Enterprise solution is arguably one of the best web crawlers in the market right now. This service is built for enterprise usage, and you can tell that from its price. If you are an individual without a huge budget for web crawling, you can as well move on to the next web crawler on the list.

Using the crawling solution offered by this service, you can capture and manage multi-structured, rapidly-changing, and complex data at scale. The service is not only reliable and easy to use but also legally compliant, thereby reducing any costly lawsuits or regulatory fines as a result of web crawling.

You can integrate the platform with many software as it does have support for most data export formats. From the setup phase, one of the things that make it easy to use is its point-and-click interface. It does have support for Regular Expression, and you can customize functionality using popular programming languages such as Python, nodeJS, and C#.

Read more,


OpenSearchServer — Open-Source Crawler for Enterprise Usage

OpenSearchServer for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Free to Use
  • Free Trials: Free – No need for a Free trial
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

The OpenSearchServer is one of the popular web crawlers you can use with peace of mind. This web crawler is an enterprise-level software but requires you to pay nothing to make use of it. It is open source, and the code used in its development is available is present on GitHub.

Using this web crawler, you can crawl an unlisted number of pages and build an indexing strategy. It is a fully integrated solution with support for a parser that can index full-text data or specific data from a page.

Aside from helping you crawl a web page, it does have an excellent search module with advanced features such as phonetic search, full-text search, Boolean search, filtered search, relevance customization, auto-completion, and suggestion, among others.

Aside from crawling websites, you can use the OpenSearchServer to crawl databases and even a REST JSON API. The crawler is one of the best options for use for both enterprise and individual users.


Apache Nutch — Best Customisable and Extensive Crawler

Apache Nutch for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Free to Use
  • Free Trials: Free – No need for a Free trial
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

If you are looking for one of the mature options in the market that you can make use of in a production environment with fewer hassles, then the Apache Nutch is one of the options you should consider. This is because it is one of the top web crawlers that are mature.

The team behind it, Apache, is a known name in the IT industry. This online web crawler is known for being highly customizable and extensive. It does have support for plugins that make your work easier, such as ElasticSearch for indexing and Apache Tika for parsing.

One thing you will also come to like about this web crawler is that it provides interfaces for popular functions, including indexing, scoring, HTML filtering, and parsers, among others. The Apache Nutch tool is also an Open Source web crawler, and the code used in its development can be found on GitHub. This web crawler is also easy to use.


StormCrawler — Best SDK for Low-Latency Web Crawlers

StormCrawler for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Free to Use
  • Free Trials: Free – No need for a Free trial
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

The StormCrawler tool is an SDK for building low-latency online web crawlers for crawling websites, indexing content, and fine-tuning it into what you want. StormCrawler is written majorly in Java and built on the Apache Storm, which is what earned it the name StormCrawler. It is a performance beast and highly scalable and extensive as you can easily extend its functionalities with plugins.

This web crawler is also polite but resilient. StormCrawler is used for a good number of use cases, some of which include web exploratory study and graph analysis, security information retrieval and extraction, and the generation goes corpus for the Persian language. This crawl is notable for its role in Common Crawl for creating news datasets.


Specialized Web Crawlers


The above web crawlers are not for specific tasks, if you are looking for a web crawler you can use for specific tasks, then this section has been written for you. With specialized web crawlers, you can carry out your crawling task easily without too much configuration and customization.

However, you lose the opportunity to use them for other crawling tasks as you can for the general purpose web crawlers. Below are some of the top specialized web crawlers in the market.


ScrapeBox — Best for SEO Crawling for Off-Site Optimisation

ScrapeBox for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Starts from $97 – lifetime license
  • Free Trials: No free trial
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

ScrapeBox is known to be the most popular web crawler available to SEOs for various crawling jobs. It is actually a toolbox with a good number of tools, including web crawlers and scrapers that you can use to make your work easier.

Some of the crawlers you can get by using the ScrapeBox tool includes Keyword Harvester, which works by crawling Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs), Proxy Harvester for crawling free proxy list websites, and Search Engine Harvester for scraping URLs from search engines.

It also has other crawler-based tools, such as a link checker, among others. It is because of its numerous tools and application in SEO that the tool is known as the Swiss Army knife of SEO.

This tool is quite powerful, multithreaded, and scalable. It is also extensible with the use of plugins, and the tool currently has over 30 add-ons. It is tested and trusted and has been in the market since 2009. ScrapeBox is a paid tool that requires you to pay in other to make use of it.


ScreamingFrog SEO Spider — Best for Website Crawling for SEO

ScreamingFrog SEO Spider for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Starts from $209 yearly
  • Free Trials: Free plan available with limited features
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

ScreamingFrog SEO Spider is another specialized online crawler that is meant for a specific task. This crawler has been developed to help website owners crawl their websites in other to identify potential SEO issues and where there is a need for improvement. This web crawler is basically an onsite SEO tool.

With it, you can find broken URLs, discover duplicate content, audit redirects, analyze page titles and metadata, visualize site architecture, review robots.txt directives, generate XML sitemaps, and extract data using XPATHS, among others. While you can say that ScrapeBox is a full package for Search Engine and offsite crawling, ScreamingFrog SEO Spider is a full package for onsite crawling.

This tool is also a paid tool. However, even without paying for it, you can crawl up to 500 URLs. To remove this limit, you will need to buy a license for it. This tool is available for Windows, Mac, and Ubuntu.


AtomPark Email Extractor — Best Crawler for Email Extraction

AtomPark Email Extractor for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Starts from $89 per license
  • Free Trials: Free trial available
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

The AtomPark Email Extractor is one of the best web crawlers in the market right now. From the name, you might not know that it is a web crawler, but looking at its tasks, you can tell it is. This web crawler has been developed to specifically crawl web pages on the Internet in other to extract email addresses.

Aside from crawling web pages, the AtomPark Email Extractor can be used to crawl databases and local files for emails. It might interest you to know that this crawler is not only meant for regular websites; you can use it to scrape social media pages such as Facebook pages too. You can automate the process so that email extraction is done at intervals without you starting the tool.

Email collection for this email crawler is rule-based, and you can set filters that will include or exclude certain email addresses. This crawler is meant for only windows users. It is paid, but you can test it for free for 7 days.


ParseHub — Best for News Scraping

ParseHub for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Free with a paid plan
  • Free Trials: Free – advanced features come at an extra cost
  • Supported Platform: Cloud, Desktop

ParseHub is marketed as a free web scraper that you can use without writing a single line of code. This is facilitated by the use of their visual scraping tool that offers you a point-and-click interface. While it is a general-purpose web scraper, it can be adapted for specifically crawling news websites for scraping news.

Read this blog by the team behind ParseHub to learn how to adapt their web scraper into news crawling bot. This bot is one of the easy-to-use bots. It is multithreaded and can be used to scrape all kinds of websites, including Javascript-heavy pages that traditional web scrapers and crawlers are finding difficult to crawl and scrape.

You can crawl and extract news and its associated data into an Excel file or JSON. While the tool is marketed as a free tool, it is important you know that its true power is unleashed only when you are a paid user.


HTTrack Website Copier — Best for Downloading Websites

HTTrack Website Copier for Online Web Crawler Tools

  • Pricing: Free
  • Free Trials: Free
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

The HTTrack tool is also another specialized web crawler. For many, this tool is not even regarded as a web crawler since it is known as a website downloader. However, at its core, it is a web crawler, and without web crawling, it can’t work.

What the tool does is crawl a website, downloading all of its web pages and replicating all of its interlinks so that the website is made available offline. With this tool, you can download a website of value and save it on a flash drive so that you can distribute and access it without the Internet.

The tool is quite fast and gets the job done with fewer hassles. Interestingly, you are not required to pay a dime to make use of it as it is free. This web crawler is available for only Windows — however, you can use it on older windows, including Windows 2000.

read more, Best Website Downloaders & Website Copier


FAQs About Online Web Crawler Tools

Q. What is Web Crawling?

Web crawling is the process of indexing data from web pages using automation bots. It involves visiting web pages automatically and then scraping data of interest and discovering URLs so that the new URLs will be crawled. The name given to automation bots used in web crawling is web crawler but can also be known as spider or simply crawler.

It might interest you to know that web crawling makes the web available to us as it is today as they power search engines, price aggregator websites, the Internet archives, copyright and plagiarism finder, among many other tools. The Internet is unimaginable without web crawling.

Read more, Web Crawling Vs. Web Scraping

If you go through the term of usage document of most websites, you will notice that web crawling and crawling are not supported. Websites do not like to be scraped except for crawlers they term as good crawlers, such as search engine bots for page indexing purposes. Most of these websites even have anti-spam systems designed to discourage crawling and other forms of botting.

However, with all of these, web crawling is not illegal, provided you are crawling publicly available data not hidden behind a paywall or even logged in. Also, make sure you do not cause any damage to the web server you are crawling from, as doing so makes your own style of web scraping illegal. For clarification purposes, do not take this as legal advice.

Q. Do I Need Coding Skills to Crawl the Web?

In the past, web crawling is meant for those with coding skills. If you do not know how to write codes, you will have to hire someone that knows how to. For now, there are web crawlers you can use without writing a single line of code. Most of the web crawlers described above do not require you to write code or be a programmer in other to make use of them.

However, if you have a deep interest in web crawling and want to have custom-made solutions, then you are better off learning how to code so that you can develop custom web crawlers with all of the features you want.


Conclusion

Web crawlers and scrapers have come to stay that the Internet will need a complete overhaul if they were to go out of existence. Looking at the above, you can see some of the top web crawlers in the market that you can use. If you take a look at the list, we didn’t mention web crawlers such as Googlebot that you can’t use.

There are many more web crawlers that are in existence that are way more powerful, scalable, and useful than the ones described above, but most of them are meant for in-house usage, and as such, you can’t have access to them. The above are some of the best you can have access to.

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