Instagram, which has a monthly user base of over two billion, is the fourth most widely used social media platform globally. Those active users generate a massive amount of publicly available content, making it an excellent source for market analysis.
Data scraping is a common practice among marketing agencies preparing content and trends analysis. More and more businesses, however, in various sectors are interested in scraping short-form content like reels.
“Instagram scraping can provide insights for businesses looking to improve their content. For example, companies scrape the competitors’ accounts and then calculate the engagement rate of each post,” says Paulius Taraškevičius, Smartproxy R&D manager. “By learning what content attracts the most engagement, they can apply the same strategies, keywords, visual elements, or topics to their content.”
To collect the required data regularly, companies choose to build their own scraping infrastructure or purchase an already existing Instagram scraper solution. For those willing to save time and infrastructure costs, Smartproxy offers the Web Scraping API. This powerful web scraper is powered by 40M+ proxies ensuring an unblockable data collection process and a 100% success rate.
Is it legal to scrape Instagram?
There are no regulations forbidding data scraping from publicly accessible sources. This rule equally applies to Instagram data scraping. Social media scraping is legal as long as it complies with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), protecting copyrighted content and private information.
Although public data collection is legal, Instagram tends to ban scraping attempts, making it hard to bypass for companies that rely on simple bots. Solutions like Web Scraping API solve the issue by ensuring constant proxy rotation. As an ethical provider, Smartproxy emphasizes that its products are dedicated only to scraping publicly available data and don’t violate any applicable laws or third-party rights, including privacy and intellectual property rights.
Instagram scraping use cases
Instagram data scraping can have various goals; however, the most common practices are to use collected data to:
- Perform sentiment analysis for brand monitoring. Getting a great understanding of public opinions and reactions in the social media landscape can help businesses measure the atmosphere before product or campaign launches.
- Learn about market trends. Social media platforms, including Instagram, act as an accelerator for spreading various market trends and is a primary source for viral news. Automating data collection with an Instagram scraper can save businesses time and money.
- Keep an eye on the competition. Instagram data scraping could be an excellent practice for identifying the competitors’ communication tactics and getting insights about their followers.
- Improve influencer marketing. Instagram scraping aids businesses in collecting Instagram profile data to find the best fit for partnership.
“By scraping influencer profiles, the companies can measure post results, and by comparing data scraped over different periods, they can analyze who is performing the best.”, claims Paulius Taraškevičius. “After such an analysis, companies can outreach the chosen influencers with greater engagement rate while the costs are still cheap.”
Data collection capabilities
To comply with all privacy laws, providers like Smartproxy carefully choose what kind of data could be collected and what could not. The Smartproxy’s Web Scraping API can collect:
- Profile information (handle, followers, bio, accounts following, post count, featured story titles, post captions);
- Post information (likes, post date, location, featured comments);
- Photos’ URLs.
Smartproxy offer for Instagram data scraping
Companies willing to scrape social media can allocate a small budget for that. Smartproxy offers four subscription plans based on the amount of scraping requests starting from $50 + VAT billed monthly.
For all new users, Smartproxy offers a 3-day free trial and 3000 requests to try the Web Scraping API. The trial can be activated by creating an account on the provider’s dashboard.
Smartproxy also has SERP and eCommerce Scraping APIs for automated data collection and residential and datacenter proxies to access publicly available targets and run the already-built internal infrastructures.