How to Scrape Instagram and 6 Best Instagram Scrapers in 2024

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms, with over 2 billion monthly active users worldwide. With its huge user base and highly engaging content, Instagram offers immense potential for businesses looking to market their products, identify influencers, conduct market research, monitor competitors, and generate leads.

However, manually collecting data from Instagram is extremely tedious and time-consuming. This is where web scraping comes in. As an expert in data extraction with over a decade of experience in web scraping and proxy services, I highly recommend automating Instagram data collection to unlock its full potential.

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know about scraping Instagram data in 2024, including:

  • What is Instagram web scraping?
  • Is scraping Instagram legal?
  • What data can be scraped from Instagram?
  • Step-by-step guide to scrape Instagram
  • Top 6 Instagram scrapers of 2023
  • Powerful use cases for scraped Instagram data

What is Instagram Web Scraping?

Instagram web scraping refers to the automated extraction of public Instagram data using software tools known as web scrapers or crawlers.

These tools allow you to query data points like usernames, hashtags, captions, comments, followers, etc. and extract them from Instagram profiles and posts at scale.

The scraped Instagram data is typically output in a structured format like CSV or JSON which can then be easily analyzed and integrated with other data sources.

As per my experience, some key advantages of using an automated Instagram scraper include:

  • Extract thousands of data points quickly – Manual data collection is not viable
  • Access public data only – Scrapers can‘t login so focus on public profiles and posts
  • Prevent blocks – Using proxies and custom delays avoids detection
  • Save time and effort – Data is extracted in a ready-to-analyze structured format
  • Gain strategic insights – Data powers vital capabilities like influencer marketing, social listening etc.

Overall, web scraping enables brands to unlock the potential of Instagram data at scale.

Is it Legal to Scrape Instagram Data?

There is no definitive legal answer regarding Instagram scraping. However, scraping publicly available data from Instagram is generally considered legal as long as:

  • You only extract data accessible without logging in (public profiles, posts, comments, hashtags etc.)
  • You don’t use the data for malicious purposes like spamming or hacking
  • You employ ethical scraping practices like respecting robots.txt and rate limits

It‘s advisable to consult a legal expert before scraping any website at scale. Also, be sure to comply with Instagram‘s Terms of Use and stay updated on any changes.

As a seasoned web scraping expert, I recommend these best practices when scraping Instagram legally:

  • Consult robots.txt and avoid over-scraping
  • Use proxies and random delays to scrape responsibly
  • Scrape only public data points available without logging in
  • Do not duplicate, modify or misuse scraped Instagram data
  • Check Instagram‘s terms regularly for updates

Adhering to these principles will keep your Instagram scraping ethical and compliant.

What Instagram Data Can You Scrape?

Some of the key Instagram data points that can be scraped legally include:


  • Get a list of recent posts for a targeted hashtag (up to 12-18 months)
  • Analyze trends for branded hashtags or discover new relevant hashtags
  • Hashtag pages don‘t require logging in and are accessible publicly


  • Post captions, comments, date, tags, visual URLs, etc.
  • Useful for social listening, influencer analysis, brand monitoring etc.
  • Posts visible to anyone can be scraped without an Instagram login


  • Username, bio, followers/following count, profile/avatar image
  • Helpful for influencer identification, competitor analysis, lead generation
  • Public profiles are open for scraping without authentication


  • Story images/videos, captions, tags, locations
  • Valuable for understanding user-generated visual content
  • Public stories accessible without logging in can be legally scraped


  • Usernames of a profile‘s followers and accounts they follow
  • Enables targeted lead generation and sales outreach
  • Followers/following of public accounts can be extracted

As per my experience, hashtags, posts and public profiles tend to offer the most valuable Instagram data for businesses to leverage.

Stories, followers and other data can provide additional context but are limited without logging into an Instagram account.

Step-by-Step Guide to Scrape Instagram

Here is a simple 5-step process to start scraping Instagram data:

1. Identify your scraping goals

Be clear about what data you need and how you will use it. This shapes your scraping approach.

2. Select an input method

You can input usernames, hashtags, locations, posts or a mix of these. Pick what‘s relevant for your goals.

3. Choose a suitable Instagram scraper

Evaluate leading tools vs building your own scraper. We discuss top options later.

4. Configure scraping settings

Customize extraction type, scrape depth, output format, proxies etc. as required.

5. Run the scrape and export data

Monitor the scrape, then export the compiled Instagram data for analysis.

Let‘s look at some of the best ways to implement an effective Instagram scraping strategy.

3 Best Ways to Scrape Instagram Data

Based on my hands-on experience with many clients, I recommend these 3 proven approaches:

1. Using an Instagram Web Scraper

Web scraping tools make it easy to extract Instagram data without any programming. Some popular options include:

  • Bright Data – My top recommendation for fast, powerful scraping with an intuitive UI.

  • Octoparse – Codeless visual scraping for simple Instagram data extraction.

  • – Smart proxy-based scraper for large-scale Instagram data collection.

  • Phantombuster – Automated API scraper for Instagram profiles, posts, followers etc.

  • Scraper API – Cloud scraping API with proxy rotation support.

These tools handle proxies, pagination, limits and other challenges automatically, allowing seamless Instagram scraping.

2. Using Proxies for Scraping

Proxies are essential to prevent blocks when scraping Instagram extensively. Some top proxy services include:

  • Smartproxy – 40+ million residential IPs ideal for social media scraping.

  • GeoSurf – Location-specific proxies for geo-targeted Instagram data.

  • Luminati – Vast proxy network with IP rotation.

  • Oxylabs – Reliable backconnect proxies with unlimited bandwidth.

Regular proxy rotation enables indefinite scraping of Instagram without tripping rate limits.

3. Using the Instagram API

For large businesses, the Instagram API allows authorized access to some public data. However, usage quotas are restrictive.

You‘ll need to apply for API access and abide by usage limits. But it provides a vetted option to collect certain Instagram data.

In my view, a dedicated web scraping tool like Bright Data offers the best combination of ease of use, scalability and flexibility for most Instagram scraping needs.

Top 6 Instagram Scrapers of 2023

Let‘s review the leading web scraping tools for extracting data from Instagram efficiently at scale:

1. Bright Data

Bright Data is my top recommendation for an all-in-one Instagram scraping solution.

Key features:

  • Prebuilt data extraction templates for easy Instagram scraping
  • Powerful proxies to avoid blocks and scrape anonymously
  • Fast extraction of millions of Instagram data points
  • Intuitive browser-based interface requiring no coding
  • Affordable pricing starting at $500/month

Bright Data is the easiest way for beginners to scrape Instagram profiles, posts, hashtags and almost any public data at scale.

2. Octoparse

Octoparse is a great codeless visual scraping tool for Instagram.

Key features:

  • Click-and-select scraper configuration
  • Headless browser scraping to avoid bot detection
  • Country-specific Instagram data collection
  • Custom data filters and extraction loops
  • Pricing starting at $89/month

Octoparse simplifies ad-hoc Instagram data extraction without coding.

3. Phantombuster

Phantombuster focuses on API-based Instagram scraping.

Key features:

  • Custom scraping for profiles, posts, stories etc.
  • Scrape up to 150K Instagram posts per month
  • Structured JSON output
  • Seamless integration with databases and apps
  • Starts at €83/month for 1,500 API calls

For automated API scraping of Instagram assets, Phantombuster is a top choice.

4. offers an intelligent proxy-driven web scraper.

Key features:

  • Scrapes millions of public Instagram posts/profiles
  • Integrated proxies to evade blocks
  • Custom filters for niche Instagram data
  • Python, JSON & Excel output options
  • Plans from $79/month for 150K pages/month delivers excellent results for large-scale Instagram scraping.

5. ScraperAPI

ScraperAPI provides a cloud scraping API.

Key features:

  • Fast data extraction from whitelisted IPs
  • Javascript rendering for dynamic data
  • Custom scrapers for specific Instagram data
  • 10 requests/minute free plan

For API-based scraping with proxy rotation, ScraperAPI is a great choice.

6. ParseHub

ParseHub is an easy-to-use visual web scraper.

Key Features:

  • Simple point-and-click interface
  • Browser emulation for fast extraction
  • Real-time scrape monitoring
  • Schedule and automate scrapes
  • 500 scrapers/month for $99

For basic Instagram profile and hashtag data, ParseHub is very budget-friendly.

Powerful Use Cases for Scraped Instagram Data

Scraped Instagram data provides unique and actionable insights across many business functions:

Market Research

Uncover consumer interests, trends and intent by analyzing hashtags, comments, content and other public signals.

  • Evaluate 100-200 industry-relevant hashtags using an Instagram analytics tool

Influencer Marketing

Find and vet influencers by extracting Instagram profiles and posts in your niche.

  • Meta study shows 67% of marketers will increase Instagram influencer budget in 2024****

Competitor Monitoring

Track competitors‘ followers, engagement, messages and brand perception based on their Instagram assets.

  • Monitor daily hashtag and branded term usage by competitors

Targeted Lead Generation

Extract and qualify leads by scraping followers of relevant hashtags, events, locations etc.

  • Email outreach to users engaging with your industry hashtags

Reputation Management

Monitor brand mentions, tags, feedback and conversations on Instagram to respond accordingly.

  • Set up daily alerts for brand name mentions

Ad and Campaign Analysis

Evaluate Instagram campaign performance by scraping engagement data for branded terms, promos etc.

  • Measure likes, comments and clicks on your campaign hashtags

With the right tools and strategy, Instagram data can become an invaluable asset for your business. The use cases are limitless.


Instagram scraping provides a goldmine of actionable data to drive growth, when done properly. Focus on public data only, use ethical practices, leverage proxies and specialized tools.

As one of the largest social media platforms, Instagram offers immense potential for brands – but extracting data manually is not viable. Scraping opens up critical capabilities across marketing, competitive intelligence, customer understanding and other key areas.

For easy, fast and effective Instagram data extraction, I highly recommend Bright Data. The pre-built scrapers, proxy infrastructure and intuitive browser-based interface enable you to extract millions of Instagram data points without any coding.

With over a decade of hands-on experience in commercial-scale web scraping, I‘m confident Bright Data can empower your brand with vital Instagram insights quickly and securely.