Semalt Expert: How To Extract All Images From Websites Using Beautiful Soup

The importance of retrieving both text and images from the web is becoming a daily task execution for most web scrapers. Heuristic approaches and techniques have been put forward to help web scrapers, and online marketers retrieve useful information from the web in usable formats.

Beautiful Soup

Different web pages and websites display content in various formats, making it a cumbersome task to extract all images from the sites at the same time. This is where Beautiful Soup comes in. Due to lack of technical knowledge, some e-commerce websites owners fail to provide Application Programming Interface (API).

With Beautiful Soup, you can extract images from a website that cannot be retrieved using an API. Beautiful Soup, a Python package used for parsing both XML and HTML documents, is highly recommended for both image and content scraping projects. Beautiful Soup library creates a parse tree that will later be used to retrieve useful data from HTML web pages.

Practical Uses of Beautiful Soup

Web scraping is the ultimate solution of retrieving huge amounts of images from web pages. Dynamic websites restrict end-users from extracting enormous quantities of images from their sites by failing to provide an API. In such cases, Beautiful Soup is the web scraping tool to consider. This library works to extract images URLs available in HTML format into structured data that can quickly be reviewed and analyzed.

Beautiful Soup is one of the most incredible tools used to pull out images from a webpage. Apart from extracting images from sites, Beautiful Soup is also widely used to remove lists, paragraph, and tables from both static and dynamic websites. This Python library is also developed to:

  • Extract all image URLs found within the target web page
  • Retrieving all the images from a webpage

Currently running as bs4, Beautiful Soup library easily supports the underlying HTML parser included in Python. This makes it easier for web scrapers to work on extracting images from HTML.

How to extract images from a website using Beautiful Soup

  • Install Beautiful Soup library on your machine by using the system packager;
  • Pass your webpage into the Beautiful Soup constructor for it to be parsed. Note that you can pass the webpage in an open file handle or a string;
  • The webpage will be converted to Unicode and the HTML entities to Unicode characters;
  • The target webpage will later parse the target webpage using a parser. Note that BS4 uses an HTML parser unless instructed to use an XML parser;

Unlike other libraries, Beautiful Soup allows you to use your favorite parser and extract all images from a website. With this Python library, all you have to do is to execute a script and watch as all the images from a specific webpage get extracted. Note that you can also search, navigate, and modify Beautiful Soup parse tree to meet your web scraping specifications.

You can easily make use of the structures used to design web content and extract images and useful data. With Beautiful Soup, web scraping has become as easy as ABC. Just install this Python library on your machine to extract images from a website.