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A Beginner’s Guide to Automating Web Scraping with Python

In an era where data is the new gold, being able to extract and manipulate information from the web is an invaluable skill. Today, I’m going to show you how to start Automating Web Scraping with Python. No prior experience necessary!

Step 1: Install BeautifulSoup and Requests

These are two essential libraries for web scraping. You can install them by typing into your terminal:

$ pip install beautifulsoup4 requests

Step 2: Choose a Website

For this tutorial, we’ll scrape data from a simple site: . Always ensure you respect the site’s robots.txt file (can be found by adding /robots.txt to the end of the URL) which outlines the site owner’s scraping policy.

Step 3: Look at the HTML

Understand how the webpage is structured by looking at its HTML code. Right-click and hit ‘Inspect’ and familiarize yourself with how the data is nested.

Step 4: Start Writing Your Python Script

We’ll first import our required libraries:

import requests
from bs4 import BeautifulSoup

Step 5: Get the URL

Use the requests.get() function to retrieve the page HTML. Start by pulling the entire page content.

url = ‘’
resp = requests.get(url)

Step 6: Apply BeautifulSoup

Use the BeautifulSoup library to parse the HTML. This will make the HTML navigable like a Python object!

soup = BeautifulSoup(resp.text, ‘html.parser’)

Step 7: Find Your Data

You can use various BeautifulSoup methods such as find(), find_all() to extract the data you want. Let’s fetch all book names:

for book in soup.find_all(‘h3’):

VoilĂ ! You’ve just automated your first web scraping task with Python. Remember, keep practicing, learning, and evolving your skills as a developer. As your knowledge deepens, so will your capacity to tackle complex and exciting projects in the world of web development!

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