Zyte Review 2022 (Pros & Cons): 10 Best Alternatives & Competitors

Are you looking forward to starting a new scraping project and you d not want to make use of the scraping tech offered by Zyte for web scraping? Then you are on the right page as we would be providing you recommendations on the best Zyte alternatives in the market that you can use.

Zyte (Formerly Scrapinghub) Alternatives

Data is the new gold of the century and businesses and companies that want to have an understanding of their market, that of their competitors, and activities would do anything to get the data that would provide them insights for making data-driven decisions.

When it comes to sources of data, the Internet is one of the biggest sources that we have today. Collecting data from web pages is completely on you as most websites do not provide them even on-demand. There are many web scraping solutions you can use to access the data you want provided it is publicly available on the Internet.

Zyte is one of the most popular scraping solutions out there that a good number of individuals and companies use. There is no doubt that it works and makes web scraping easy especially for coders. However, it is not the perfect web scraping solution.

While some people would like it, others find it not to meet their requirements and as such, are out looking for a solution. If you are one of such persons, then this article has been written for you as we would be providing you recommendations on the best Zyte alternatives to use in the market.

Before doing that, let take a look at an overview of Zyte as a web scraping solution and the reasons many web scrapers are looking for an alternative to it.


Brief Zyte Review <Pros & Cons>


Zyte Pros

Zyte as a company has done a lot for the web scraping industry, providing one of the most popular scraping frameworks (Scrapy) for free.

Zyte Overview

Zyte is formerly known as Scrapinghub, a service that provides a complete suite of tools for web scraping. The company is the original developer and contributor of Scrapy, the most popular web scraping/crawling framework developed for Python web scraping.

Scrapy is an open-source tool and is provided for free. Aside from this, their other solutions are meant to be paid for. These other solutions make Zyte the complete suite for web scraping. It has a service known as Scrapy Cloud which is meant for deploying to and running web scrapers and crawlers from the cloud.

Read more, How to Set Up Proxies for Scrapy

Zyte is also the owner of Smart Proxy Manager, formerly known as Crawlera, the first proxy API developed to help you smartly manage proxies and ensure your requests are not blocked by your target sites.

If your site of target is Javascript dependents, then you can use Splash, a headless browser developed to work with Scrapy and other third-party scrapers for scraping Javascript-heavy pages. Zyte has recently developed an Extraction API that would help you scrape more with less code. Basically, you can see the service as a developer-focused service.

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Zyte Cons

As complete as Zyte is, it is not the tool for everyone, and let face it, it even has some downsides that make them unfavorable to some people.

Why Use a Zyte Alternative?

Below are some of the reasons why some past users or even intending users of the Byte scraping solution lookout for alternatives to use.

  • Unbundled to a Fault

If there is one reason I do not like Zyte, then that is because the service separated each unit of its functionality into a separate tool. Take, for instance, Scrapy is a web framework but cannot render Javascript. If you need Javascript execution and rendering, you will need to pay for Splash which is a headless browser. Their proxy manager (Smart Proxy Manager) is separate and different from the extraction API.

All of these many tools are available separately even though could mean you can just pay for the one you need make it somehow difficult for those that would need most of the features. There are web scrapers that handle Javascript, provide and manage proxies, ass well as offer you extraction supported all in one.

  • Cost Can Add Up Quickly

The unbundled nature of the service means that you only get to pay for the tool you need. If all you need is a proxy API/manager, then you can just pay for Smart Proxy Manager. Same for if all you wanted is a headless browser. But if you need all of the services and you want to go past the minimum because of the size of your project, then the cost can add up so quickly and become something big that you might consider expensive.

  • Can Be Buggy Sometimes

This is not what many experiences all the time but there are times the tools just do not work the way they should. The Smart Proxy Manager is known to get blocked by some websites and after a few trials, it will give up and report to you. Splash is also one of the tools that seem not to work sometimes.

However, if you are having an issue with any of their tools, you can speak to their technical assistant and they would help find out the root of the problem and offer you solutions. However, some people are not in for that and would rather dump the tool for another.


Best Zyte Alternatives (Web Scrapers Similar to Zyte)

Zyte is just one of the web scraping solutions in the market. There are many more that can be said to be more effective, easier to use, and even cheaper than it.

So, you do not have to stick to Zyte if it does not meet your requirements. In this section of the article, we would be taking a look at the best alternatives of Zyte, many of which do not even require you to write a single line of code.


Apify

Apify Logo

  • Pricing: Starts at $49 per month for 100 Actor compute units
  • Free Trials: Starter plan comes with 10 Actor compute units
  • Data Output Format: JSON
  • Supported OS: Cloud-based – accessed via API

Apify Homepage

Apify is a web automation platform that has been developed to help marketers automate many of their repetitive activities online. From this platform, you can get web scrapers for many of the popular websites and data set. Apify is also a tool made by developers for developers.

However, the web scrapers offered on the platform are already-made scrapers you can just integrate into your own custom code to start using — and the data is returned in a structured format usually in JSON. Apify is a NodeJS platform and requires you to have the Apify module installed before using it. Aside from web scrapers and other automation bots, Apify is also known to provide other web scraping-based tools as in the case of proxies and data storage.


Selenium

Selenium Logo

  • Pricing: Completely free
  • Free Trials: Completely free
  • Data Output Format: Most popular formats supported
  • Supported Platforms: Python, Java, Ruby, Javascript, and C#

Selenium Homepage

Selenium is one of the best alternatives to Zyte if you are a programmer. The tool automates web browsers and as it is rightly stated on its page, what you do with that power is up to you. Some developers use it for automated testing. Others use it for developing bots to automate their workflow.

In our own case, we can use it for scraping websites that require Javascript rendering and execution. Selenium web driver can automate most of the popular web browsers including Chrome and Safari. In terms of language support, Selenium does support Python, Java, Javascript, C#, Ruby, and Kotlin. It might interest you to know that Selenium is free to use and the only cost you will incur is for proxies.


Data Collector

Bright Data - Luminati

  • Pricing: Starts at $350 for 100K page loads
  • Free Trials: Available
  • Data Output Format: Excel
  • Supported Platforms: Web-based

Bright Data for data Collector

Data Collector is another good alternative to Zyte for web scraping. Data Collector is owned and managed by Bright Data, a popular proxy provider. Data Collector unlike the other 2 above is meant for those without coding skills and the less technical marketers and researchers.

With Data Collector, you do not even need to configure proxies. Data Collector has support for most of the popular websites on the Internet cutting across several niches such as social media, e-commerce stores, and booking websites. For each of the sites it supports, it has a set of web scrapers known as collectors.

Take, for instance, for Twitter, it has support for extracting structured data such as profile details, tweets by hashtags, and keywords, among others. Data Collector is a paid tool and pricing is affordable.


Octoparse

Octoparse Logo

  • Pricing: Starts at $75 per month
  • Free Trials: 14 days of free trial with limitations
  • Data Output Format: CSV, Excel, JSON, MySQL, SQLServer
  • Supported Platform: Cloud, Desktop 

Octoparse Best Scrapers

Octoparse is one of the best web scrapers out there and can be seen as a good alternative to Zyte except for the fact that it does not provide its own proxies. For you to use Octoparse, you will need to configure proxies — even for Zyte’s Smart Proxy Manager, you have to pay which makes this, not a disadvantage.

Octoparse is a visual web scraping tool that you can use to turn data from multiple web pages into a spreadsheet without writing a single line of code. With this, you can tell that non-coders can make use of it. Interestingly, the tool provides an API that you can use as a developer to manage your tasks and retrieve extracted data programmatically.


WebScraper.io Extension

webscraper io

  • Pricing: Freemium
  • Free Trials: Freemium
  • Data Output Format: CSV, XLSX, and JSON
  • Supported Platform: Browser extension (Chrome and Firefox)

webscraper overview

WebScraper.io is a service that seeks to make web scraping accessible to everyone interested in it. To achieve this aim, they provide a Chrome browser extension that can be used for web data extraction. As of the time of writing this article, over 400K users have made use of the extension for extracting data from web pages.

One thing you will come to like about the browser extension is that it is free to use and comes with basic features that would aid you in scraping the data you need. If you want to access the advanced features available, you will need to opt-in for their cloud scraper — and it is paid.


WebHarvy

Webharvy Logo

  • Pricing: Starts at $139 for a single user license
  • Free Trials: Not available
  • Data Output Format: TXT, CSV, Excel, JSON, XML. TSV, etc.
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

WebHarvy Homepage

WebHarvy is a popular web scraping tool that you can use to scrape text, URLs, emails, images, and even HTML from websites. The tool does not require you to write a single line of code — all you need to do is use the point and click interface to select the data of interest after opening the page with the browser the tool provides.WebHarvy is easy to use and can be said to be powerful when you take a look at the features it provides.

WebHarvy has support for similar pattern detection, crawling multiple pages, submitting keywords, category scraping, Regular Expression, and custom Javascript execution. It might interest you to know that the tool also has support for web automation. With WebHarvy, you only get to pay once and use it forever.


Pyspider

PySpider

  • Pricing: Completely free
  • Free Trials: Completely free
  • Data Output Format: Most popular formats supported
  • Supported Platforms: Python

Pyspider Homepage

If you are a Python coder looking for an alternative to Zyte suite of tools then Pyspider together with high-quality proxies would do the magic. And yes, unlike Scrapy, the crawler framework by Zyte, Pyspider has got support for rendering Javascript and the tool is completely free.

Aside from Javascript rendering, Pyspider offers many other features you will not see in Scrapy and Splash such as a powerful WebUI with a script editor, task monitor, project manager, and result viewer. Pyspider also has support for many of the database systems with SQLAlchemy as the backend, making it easy and secure for dealing with databases. This framework has support for scheduling tasks, retries in cases of errors, prioritizing tasks, and recrawling pages.


ParseHub

Parsehub Logo

  • Pricing: Free with a paid plan
  • Free Trials: Free – advance features come at an extra cost
  • Data Output Format: Excel, JSON,
  • Supported Platform: Cloud, Desktop

Parsehub Homepage

ParseHub is for those without coding skills. You can liken it to Octoparse and the other web scrapers that provide users a point and click interface for selecting data points. ParseHub is being marketed as a free web scraper. However, upon visiting the pricing page, you will discover the free tier does come with some restrictions. While others can use it, depending on the size of your project, you might not be able to make use of it. Opting for their paid plan and using high-quality proxies from providers such as Bright Data and Smartproxy will give you the power Zyte would considering the fact that it also does have an API that makes it easy to retrieve data programmatically.


ScrapeStorm

Scrapestorm Logo

  • Pricing: Starts at $49.99 per month
  • Free Trials: Starter plan is free – comes with limitations
  • Data Output Format: TXT, CSV, Excel, JSON, MySQL, Google Sheets, etc.
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop, Cloud

Scrapestorm Overview

ScrapeStorm can be said to be one of the best alternatives of Zyte especially if you are a non-coder that wants to just retrieve data from web pages. ScrapeStorm has the advantage of being AI-powered, giving it the intelligence to automatically identify important data points on a page without your manual action.

However, for unidentified data points, the tool provides an intuitive point and click interface for identifying them. The team behind ScrapeStorm is an ex-Google crawler team and as such, you can tell they have got some experience when it comes to scraping. ScrapeStorm does support the use of proxies and it is advisable to configure proxies if you will be scraping from a good number of pages.


Helium Scraper

Helium Scraper Logo

  • Pricing: Starts at a $99 one-time purchase
  • Free Trials: 10 days free
  • Data Output Format: CSV, Excel, JSON, SQLite, etc.
  • Supported Platforms: Desktop

Helium Scraper Overview

If you do not want to write code, then Helium Scraper is a good alternative to Zyte scraping solutions. Helium Scraper is a generic web scraper that provides you with fast extraction with a simple workflow. If you work with big data, then you can consider this tool depending on the size of the data you want to collect as Helium Scraper can collect up to 140 terabytes of data.

This tool scales and can easily extract complex data. It does have support for SQL and database generation and manipulation, would increase the speed at which you extract data, and does have support for similar element and list detection among others. Helium Scraper is also one of the web scrapers you may once and use forever with no recurring payments except for updates.


FAQs About Zyte (Formerly Scrapinghub)                     

  • Does Zyte Works?

Yes, Zyte works and it can be considered as one of the top web scraping solutions in the market. It is open of the oldest in the space and has got some of the best hands. However, it is not just the web scraping solution for everyone yet and that is why we wrote this article to provide alternatives to those that need them.

  • Why Use Proxies for Zyte and its Alternatives?

Inside the Zyte suite of tools is Smart Proxy Manager (formerly Crawlera). This tool is basically a proxy manager that manages proxy lists on your behalf to avoid blocks — it is developed for Scrape and other tools that need proxies.

Without proxies, bots would be easily identified since they send too many requests within a short period of time and their IP address would easily get blocked. Most of the web scrapers described above require you to add proxies. For those that do not such as Bright Data, they use proxies under the hood so you do not have to.

  • What is the Best Alternative to Zyte?

The above is a list to help you make a choice. However, if you are finding it difficult to do that, then  let help you make a choice. Data Collector remains the easiest to use as you would not even configure proxies and there is no need to write a single line of code.

For coders, the option depends on their programming language of choice. However, for a general tool with support for multiple languages, Selenium is the tool for the job. Visual web scrapers such as Octoparse are also good for those with no coding skills.

  • Zyte Tutorials (How to use Zyte)

As you already know, Zyte is a complete suite of tools with each of the tools separated as a unique product. For this reason, you will need a tutorial for each of the tools. There is no better tutorial than the one provided in the official documentation. You can read the official Zyte documentation to learn how to make use of its Automatic Extraction tool, Scrapy, Splash, and Smart Proxy Manager.

Conclusion

That been said, it has also got a good number of features that makes it perfect for many users. However, there are other users that wouldn’t want to make use of it for some reason. If you are one of such users, I hope you got an alternative from the list above?


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