This post is so simple and basic, a lot of you can stop reading right now. Some people (myself included) are not experts at scraping things. In fact, I am a complete noob when it comes to XPath, importXML or basically any type of coding whatsoever. Luckily, I work in an ever-gracious industry. Free SEO tools, spreadsheets, bookmarklets and extensions galore! Sometimes, something as easy as exporting search results, can be seen as a challenge before a simple tool is discovered.

One of the more useful, but often ignored SEO tools is the Scrape Similar Plug-in for Chrome. It can be a major timesaver. One of my favorite uses for this plug-in is to scrape the URLs of commenters on any given blog post.

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Using Scrape Similar to Export Comment URLs to Google Docs or Excel

highlight comment to scrape

 

1) Open Chrome. Download Scrape Similar.

 

2) Visit blog post with comments you want to scrape.
scrape similar chrome plugin

 

3) Highlight first comment with a URL included.

 

4) Right-click. Select ‘Scrape Similar.’

 

5) Export to Google Docs.export comment urls to excel

Click on the screenshots to the right to view full-size.

And there you have it. Amazing data ready for you to manipulate. You didn’t have to do a thing. Knowing the right tools for each job is a huge skill-set.

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Want to Learn How to Scrape?

A good start is to play around with the Scrape Similar plug-in. Take a look at the XPath reference. Study it each time you use it. Eventually, it may lead to being able to scrape things without someone else’s plug-in doing the heavy lifting. Something that will be beneficial on a page where Scrape Similar doesn’t work as intended.

Really Want to Learn More About Scraping?

Check out these resources to get you going.

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Do you scrape? How did you learn? Have a resource to share? Drop it in the comments.
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5 Responses to How to Scrape Blog Comment URLs

  1. Standing out by being simple is something that doest happen too often in our industry anthony. I share the same notion with you.. :-)

    Especially for the ones that don’t have the technical background, having tools like this scraper is godsend.

    I use it primarily to collect guest posting potentials : inurl:write-for-us ‘keyword’ or something similar.

    Cheers to the ever forgiving industry were in!

    -Yan Kirby

    • We all know how to do so much, but sometimes we miss things that are so simple and obvious. I’d love to have every post I write be revolutionary and provide content that doesn’t exist anywhere else. That’s not gonna happen though. Sometimes, sharing a simple thing that you regularly use can reach the right person at the right time and make a huge difference for them.

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment Yan. It is really appreciated.

  2. Data Builder says:

    I tried this on a blog post that uses Disqus for its comment section. I followed the steps that you outlined and (person commenting had a URL), but got the message “Frames are not supported at the moment. Please open the frame in a new tab or window and try scraping again.” I couldn’t get past that message. Do you know what the problem is?

    Any other tools you can recommend? I’m trying to find a tool that scrapes the commenter’s name AND his/her comment. Thanks.

    • Yeah, Disqus is sort of a different animal. The entire comment section is framed into the page and not a part of the code. Scrape similar will work on standard WordPress comments, comments that are built into the HTML.

  3. […] commenters, Anthony Nelson (@anthonydnelson) of Northside SEO put together this awesome post about scraping URLs from blog comments. You can use a free Chrome plugin to do so and it’s super easy. If you need help, just let me […]

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