How To Scrape Yelp Reviews: A Python Tutorial For Beginners

scrape yelp review data

Yelp is an American company that offers information about various businesses and specialists’ feedback. These are actual client feedback taken from the users of multiple firms or other business entities. Yelp is an important website that houses the largest amount of business reviews on the internet.

As we can see, if we scrape Yelp review data using a tool called a scraper or Python libraries, we can find many useful tendencies and numbers here. This would further be useful for enhancing personal products or changing free clients into paid ones.

Since Yelp categorizes numerous businesses, including those that are in your niche, scraping its data may help you get information about businessmen’s names, contact details, addresses, and business types. It makes the search of potential buyers faster.

What is Yelp API?

yelp API

The Yelp API is a web service set that allows developers to retrieve detailed information about various businesses and reviews submitted by Yelp users. Here’s a breakdown of what the Yelp restaurant API offers and how it works:

Access to Yelp’s Data

The API helps to access Yelp’s database of business listings. This database contains data about businesses, such as their names, locations, phone numbers, operational hours, and customer reviews.

Search Functionality

Business listings can also be searched using an API whereby users provide location, category and rating system. It assists in identifying or filtering particular types of firms or those located in a particular region.

Business Details

The API is also helpful for any particular business; it can provide the price range, photos of the company inside, menus, etc. It is beneficial when concerned with a business’s broader perspective.


It is possible to generate business reviews, where you can find the review body text and star rating attributed to a certain business and date of the review. This is useful in analyzing customers’ attitude and their responses to specific products or services.


Before integrating Yelp API into your application, there is an API key that needs to be obtained by the developer who will be using the Yelp API to access the Yelp platform.

Rate Limits

The API is how your application connects to this service, and it has usage limits, whereby the number of requests is limited by a certain time frame. This will enable the fair use of the system and prevent straining of the system by some individuals.

Documentation and Support

As anticipated there is a lot of useful information and resources that are available for the developers who want to use Yelp API in their applications. This covers example queries, data structures the program employs, and other features that make the program easy to use.

What are the Tools to Scrape Yelp Review Data?

tools to scrape yelp review data

Web scraping Yelp reviews involves using specific tools to extract data from their website. Here are some popular tools and how they work:


BeautifulSoup is a Python library that helps you parse HTML and XML documents. It allows you to navigate and search through a webpage to find specific elements, like business names or addresses. For example, you can use BeautifulSoup to pull out all the restaurant names listed on a Yelp page.


Selenium is another Python library that automates web browsers. It lets you interact with web pages just like a human would, clicking buttons and navigating through multiple pages to collect data. Selenium can be used to automate the process of clicking through different pages on Yelp and scraping data from each page.


Scrapy is a robust web scraping framework for Python. It’s designed to efficiently scrape large amounts of data and can be combined with BeautifulSoup and Selenium for more complex tasks. Scrapy can handle more extensive scraping tasks, such as gathering data from multiple Yelp pages and saving it systematically.


ParseHub is a web scraping tool that requires no coding skills. Its user-friendly interface allows you to create templates and specify the data you want to extract. For example, you can set up a ParseHub project to identify elements like business names and ratings on Yelp, and the platform will handle the extraction.

How to Avoid Getting Blocked While Scraping Yelp?

Yelp website is constantly changing to meet users’ expectations, which means the Yelp Reviews API you built might not work as effectively in the future.

Respect Robots.txt

Before you start scraping Yelp, it’s essential to check their robots.txt file. This file tells web crawlers which parts of the site can be accessed and which are off-limits. By following the directives in this file, you can avoid scraping pages that Yelp doesn’t want automated access to. For example, it might specify that you shouldn’t scrape pages only for logged-in users.

User-Agent String

When making requests to Yelp’s servers, using a legitimate user-agent string is crucial. This string identifies the browser or device performing the request. When a user-agent string mimics the appearance of a legitimate browser, it is less likely to be recognized as a bot. Avoid using the default user agent provided by scraping libraries, as they are often well-known and can quickly be flagged by Yelp’s security systems.

Request Throttling

Implement request throttling to avoid overwhelming Yelp’s servers with too many requests in a short period of time. This means adding delays between each request to simulate human browsing behavior. You can do this using sleep functions in your code. For example, you might wait a few seconds between each request to give Yelp’s servers a break and reduce the likelihood of being flagged as suspicious activity.

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