Web Design

Making the Most of Golang for Web Scraping

Web scraping is viewed as the best way to collect data from the internet. It guarantees automation and speed while using the same tools to provide a safer and anonymous extraction for the user.

With web scraping tools, businesses and individuals can quickly get their hands on any dataset they need without spending too much time and energy. They can also afford to stay concealed while at it.

Today, several languages can be used to build tools for data extraction. Python and JavaScript are some of the most common programming languages for developing scraping software. 

But since 2009, a developer has seen and adopted a new programming language known as Golang. It is built by Google and is known to easily eradicate the many obstacles associated with using the older programming languages.

In this brief article, we will consider what Golang is and why it is important for building tools such as a Golang web scraper. You can also read this comprehensive article about how to build a web scraper using Golang. 

What is Golang?

Golang can also be correctly called Go and, as mentioned above, was built by Google in 2009 and introduced to the general public in 2012.

It is said to solve the problems of the older languages. For instance, it combines better structural typing and increased run-time efficiency of C language with the easy readability and usability of Python and JavaScript.

Therefore, it is faster than most other languages and offers more features and advantages, as we will see under the importance below.

Importance of Golang Programming Language

Some of the benefits and features of this programming language constitute the best reasons why Golang is important for web scraping. And the advantages include the following:

  • Speed

Golang is a compiled language and not an interpreted language making it faster than other languages that need to be interpreted before using it.

Even high-level programming languages cannot compete with Golang when it comes to speed. For instance, Java, which is recognized as the fastest programming language, pales in comparison to Golang.

Tools like a Golang web scraper can interact with websites and collect their content faster than those built in other languages.

  • Simplicity

Golang is also a very simple language that most developers can use. This arises from its ability to rely on the least amount of dependencies.

This means developers can begin building and even finish without external tools and elements.

It is equipped with several templates, basic test libraries, and synchronization primitives to ensure developers don’t search elsewhere for assistance.

  • Small Learning Curve

A small learning curve is necessary for any language that requires wider acceptance and adoption, and Golang offers this.

The short lines of code can be written well enough after a brief period of studying. The documentation is easy to study as it contains less than 30 keywords.

  • Support

Support is another important factor that makes it more rewarding for developers to choose and work with Golang.

Built by Google, you have the liberty to enjoy all the support that Google can offer.

Similarly, Golang supports various tools, editors and working environments. It is almost impossible to find one popular virtual editor that is not accepted and supported on the Golang platform.

  • Extensive Tools and Talent

All the important and necessary tools needed to build key tools, such as web scrapers, can be found within the Golang libraries.

Some of the most common tools include Gotests and Revive, making table-driven testing and extension of frameworks possible on Golang.

Golang is also open-source, which means an endless stream of talents trying to develop newer and better tools and plugins that will make the language even more useful for several activities, including web scraping.

3 Tips to Help You Use Golang Effectively

And below are 3 important tips that you should keep in mind when trying to use Golang, as they can help make the language even more effective:

  • Always Install a Manager

The first tip that can help you get the best out of this language is to start out using a package manager.

The package manager allows you to easily do several things, including combining both first-party and third-party libraries, defining and easily downloading all project dependencies, pinning version changes for easy recognition, and upgrading dependencies without the risk of breaking structures.

A package manager is useful whether you intend to use all the common installers or craft an installer from scratch.

  • Use Frameworks Specific to Web Scraping

The second tip for a successful Golang project is to focus on using frameworks specific to your project.

In the case of data extraction, you should focus on using frameworks built specifically for web scraping.

Some of the best-known web scraping frameworks include Ferret, Gocrawl, Hakrawler, and Soup.

Using them can provide you with the full web scraping infrastructure and even speed up how quickly you can build and deploy a Golang web scraper.

  • Consider Parsing Raw HTML with Colly

Finally, for best results, always parse the raw HTML files using the Colly library. This will make it easier to organize the extracted data and save it in the available database.

Conclusion

Golang has come to stay, and using it can be as easy as using other languages while offering extra advantages.

And when it comes to building and working with a Golang web scraper, you may want to follow the tips provided above to make the process easier and more profitable.

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