Nowadays, web scraping is emerging as a game-changer in the data-driven business world, in which extracting big chunks of unstructured data from hundreds and thousands of pages and having them organized in structured formats ready for utilization, is becoming an invaluable process.
In order to scrape data anonymously and to avoid being noticed and blocked or banned by websites, proxy management has become a crucial component in any web scraping service.

A “Proxy” is a middle gateway between your device and the website, meaning that your activity will be masked and hidden behind the proxy’s IP since your requests will be routed through the other server, that of the proxy. Then, the proxy will keep changing, thus not drawing attention to one single IP. In addition to that, some services will also offer some anti-blocking intelligence to improve the chances of getting back successful requests without being blocked.

If you’re looking for a reliable proxy provider to use within your web scraping project, we have created a list of the top 5 web scraping services, which will assist you in making your best choice. The size, type, and location of the IP pool provided, the proxy changing interval, the ease of integration of the service within your project, the artificial intelligence and the price you will pay for the service are the factors we took when we made this list, thus the methodology we used in our ranking is simple; we are looking for a service that can attain a perfect balance between performance, speed, and price.

1. ProxyCrawl

ProxyCrawl being on the top of this list is not because it is our blog, it is because the value that you get from using ProxyCrawl is distinguishable from the market.

ProxyCrawl is not only a rotating proxy provider for your scraping projects; it is a comprehensive all in one platform for developers looking for data, starting from reliable backconnect proxies to intelligent easy to use crawling API, a scraper API with dedicated and generic scrapers, screenshot taking feature, an endless scroll feature on headless browsers. ProxyCrawl offers cloud data storage solution to store crawled data in different formats, images, JSON and HTML.

The system is powered by an AI algorithim that bypasses cloudflare, akamai blocks and CAPTACHs. ProxyCrawl has dedicated technical support team, and the first level support team is online literally 24/7.

For the crawling API, a pay-as-you-go plan is followed with no hidden fees, where you only pay for successful requests. You will get the first 1,000 requests for free, and you will know what is the exact cost based on the number of requests you make. With the monthly pricing calculator, it makes calculating your cost quite easy, you only pay per success and if there no value to your business, you do not pay.

For the Smart backconnect proxy, you pay a monthly subscription, subscriptions range between $99/month to $289/month. The features between the different packages allow you to use more proxy pools, geolocations and more threads on unlimited bandwidth. The pricing for other ProxyCrawl services mentioned in this post can be found on each individual product page.

2. Apify

Although Apify does not have the largest number of proxies as the other service providers mentioned in this post, its reliability and great performance which enabled it to surpass other competitors in the domain. It provides a universal http proxy to hide the origin of your web scrapers, using both datacenter and residential IP addresses.

Its datacenter IPs are fast and cheap, but they can get blocked by target websites while the residential IPs it offers are not as cheaper but can get the job done without getting blocked. The IP addresses in the pool are smartly rotated to avoid detection. Apify also offers a web scraper with specialized data storages to manage web scraping jobs, save their results and export them to formats like CSV, Excel or JSON.

When it comes to pricing, it is $1 per month per IP for shared datacenter IPs, $7 per IP if you using less than 100 IP and the price will change if you are using more IPs, noting that there is a 5GB limit per IP address. For residential IPs, usage is charged based on data transferred, with no upfront commitment, starting from $12.5 per GB and the price decreases as you use more GBs.
As a whole, Apify provides a reliable and good performing proxy management at a reasonable price for such a service.

3. Luminati

Luminati has one of the largest proxy networks in the market, with more than 40 million residential IPs in hand; also, Luminati offers Datacenter and Mobile IP proxies. Luminati’s Proxy API is available in all common coding languages, where they provide pre-configured examples with your accounts and settings.

Their Proxy manager is an open-source, proxy management software allowing you to manage your proxies without requiring any coding. Luminati’s pricing is bandwidth based starting from $0.6 per datacenter proxy or $12.5/GB for residential proxies, which means, they are not cheap, and their main target is the enterprise-level customers.

4. Oxylabs

As it is the case with Luminati, Oxylabs provides a huge pool of data-center and residential proxies for your project, but with an extra feature which is a built-in web crawler. They offer good performance private IPs with 82 locations, with anonymous proxies from all over the globe to avoid IP blocking.

Their web crawler can perform web scraping making you needless of other services. They also offer a dedicated account manager for each user, although this does not mean that one person is dedicated only for your account, which is similar to mostly any other service. Oxylabs surpasses Luminati with the level of anonymity, in which it has proved to get fewer blockings on some websites; but Luminati offers a larger pool of rotating proxies.

Oxylabs is a great choice as a proxy provider, although when it comes to pricing, their billing model is a little bit complicated and as a whole not cheap at all, but indeed they will always have their loyal customers that will choose a reliable service and overlook the cost.

5. LimeProxies

LimeProxies is a well-known dedicated proxy provider with a wide range of proxies covering more than 40 countries around the world along with options to set up custom locations. They offer fast and dedicated http/https/socks datacenter proxies, with dedicated proxy control panel and on-demand IP refreshing for premium proxies only. Up to 25 IPs can be authenticated at the same time.

The proxies can also work with dynamic IP. A great thing about Limeproxies is that you can test a proxy for free for 2 days before buying any package. Their prices range from $4.99 for 1 IP to $1,750 for 2,500 IPs for the premium proxy plan. The main downside with Limeproxies is that there is a total bandwidth usage limit and that unfortunately many websites such as sneakers, and e-commerce are not accessible. Also, their pricing is not very competitive, but still, their excellent service makes up for the expensive price.

Hopefully one of the services we mentioned will fit your project needs. Sometimes you may have to make a compromise between efficiency and cost, but don’t forget that when it comes to our service, you will get a perfect blend of reliability, performance, and speed with the best possible price.