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To Buy, Or To Build; Which Is The Best Web Data Strategy For Your Business? 

( 8, 2020)--As more companies are planning to invest in web crawling, developing a data solution is fundamental and pivotal. Today most businesses are facing the struggle often associated with almost every technology adoption, whether to build everything from scratch or buy a license from a vendor. 

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In simple terms, there is no single right approach that works best for every company. It would vary based on your needs, policies, and resources. 

Below are the factors that would determine the real cost of resources and considerations required to create a data strategy. 

  1. Scaling

Not every crawling solution is scalable. As the business grows, your web data requirements will also change, requiring more sources and more powerful features. In the first stages, if your company needs only a one-time solution, it would be easier to build a one-off web scraper using a proxy provider comparison tool and a simple programming language such as Python.  

Over time, you would need more advanced data filtering, offering frequent and consistent data extraction, done at a larger scale. It might become challenging to build a fully-equipped robust solution to keep up with the dynamics of your online business. It might be then the time to look into other possible options than investing both time and effort onto something that is not your core competence. 

2. Development and Maintenance 

Building a stable solution could take a substantial amount of time, along with infrastructure costs. You will need at least one full-time employee to coordinate the development as well as maintenance. The cost of hiring staff varies depending on your location; regardless, it is a significant expense that would divert your resources away from other primary initiatives. 

The hidden cost of maintenance and usage also has to go into the account while including the potential expenses associated with building or buying a data solution. 

3. Cost of Delegation 


Unless you have a full-time team focused on web data extraction, you will most likely be required to refocus your IT staff's work on the development using this guide to web scraping proxies. Many organizations, depending on the nature and size of their business, might not even have the option to delegate such tasks. When done, this could mean the other priority tasks are compromised. 

There comes the point to calculate the costs of the opportunities lost because you are dedicating time to create more features and fixing bugs in the current system. Are you willing to compromise the efficiency? Or would it be better to buy a solution?

To Build or To Buy?

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In essence, if your company has a set of requirements not met by commercially available products, then building your own system makes sense. It would address any sensitive security factors and provide tailored workflows. 

On the other hand, if you do not believe it's wise to devote internal resources for anything other than core competency, and a commercial solution can cater to your needs, then buying would be the right solution for your company.

Ultimately, for many businesses, the cost might be the biggest factor in deciding whether you can afford to invest in building your solution or buy the best that meets your demands. The best approach begins with identifying the solution that provides the best value given the expenses. 

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