Amazon shipping cost – Web screen scrape
Requirement: Create a web screen scraping spider to gather all compeditors pricing &shipping costs on Amazon.com
Background: Amazon.com sells Amazon owned products directly to customers but also allows outside sellers to sell their products to their customers. In this regards, Amazon is similar to a shopping mall where a customer can order from different merchants.
The following is an example of a product sold on Amazon which has sellers competing for the sale:
Product: Apple iPod nano 16GB Slate
URL on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B0097BEDPG/
While Amazon has a way for sellers to link into their servers and extract pricing data for a given product, Amazon does not return the shipping cost for each vendor. Without the shipping cost, the total price for a given seller is unknown, and therefore, it’s likewise unknown what price a seller needs to post on Amazon for their product to be the lowest price.
Solution: We created a web screen scraping crawler to spider all the 2000+ products that our customer had posted on Amazon. The web screen scraping spider extracted all the compeditor’s pricing and shipping cost and downloaded the data to our customer’s local server. Additionaly we automated our customer’s pricing based on their own predefined conditions therby remaining the lowest priced seller on Amazon.
Alternative Applications – web screen scrape:
While the programmed spider that we wrote was automated to run multiple times per day, retreive pricing information, and update the customer´s computer with new pricing, the same spider could be written to retrieve alternative item information, like product descriptions, rankings & reviews. The data extracted from the web screen scrape could be downloaded and sorted in an excel spreadsheet of CSV file with links to the product page URL and pertinant data highlighed.