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What are Residential Proxies?

11 min read

Perhaps, you heard about proxies already. Maybe, you even used proxies in your day-to-day tasks online. However, if you lack a thorough understanding of proxies, it might be that you yet not discovered their full potential. At the end of this article, you’ll have a better understanding of what proxies can bring to the table. Let’s dive in! 

What is a Proxy Server? 

In simplest terms, a proxy server is “middleman” between the site you wish to visit and your device. Instead of connecting to a website directly and showing your IP address to the web server, you can use a proxy that carries its own IP address. In other words, your visit to a given site will connect via a proxy server, before actually accessing the website. It sounds like a simple process, right? 

Residential proxies explained

 Residential proxies are IP addresses attached to a real physical location. Residential proxies excel in high anonymity factor and are harnessed for almost any activity online when you need to stay hidden, for whatever reason.    

Advantages of Residential Proxies 

  • Residential proxies are genuine IP addresses, so they’re not easy to detect
  • They come with a high level of anonymity

 Disadvantages of Residential Proxies

 They tend to be more expensive in comparison to other proxy types 

Proxies & Web Scraping  

Every business wants to stay ahead in their competitive space. Hence, companies seek external data to analyze it, and by doing so, gain a competitive advantage over rivals. So they collect (web scrape) relevant information from desired public data sources online. Usually, data is gathered from their competitors’ sites to gain actionable insights that allow shaping their business strategy.

 However, web scraping itself is not that simple. If you send too many requests to a given web server, you’ll get restricted due to reaching requests limit. And, that is when the use of proxies becomes essential. Residential proxies will provide an array of IP addresses, and by doing so, you can distribute your requests to the website. The website administrators see each of them as coming from unique IPs. That way, you can web scrape without restrictions. 

Business use Cases of Residential Proxies 

In this day of age, businesses should always be cautious about criminally-minded individuals online. After all, how many times a day you hear about data leaks? Companies simply cannot compromise the data at their disposal. Think about brand reputation? Hence, using a proxy could be their best bet to stay protected. 

The applications of residential proxies for business are as follows: 

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Ad Verification 

When your advertising campaigns start paying off, you might want to scale up. But that is not cheap in any way. If you’re going to increase profitability, a proper plan will have to be in place. However, not all businesses think about securing their advertising campaigns online. 

The advertising world is full of tricks and scams. In fact, ad frauds come in different dimensions, and many businesses don’t even have a clue that they have been scammed. For instance, when an ad impression falls on a fraudster website instead of the target site, money goes down the drain, as it never reaches the desired audience. Here is where residential proxies are harnessed to check advertisement pages anonymously, ensuring everything is set up correctly. 

Brand Protection  

Building a brand is no piece of cake. But destroying it can be such an easy feat. Businesses should do everything in their power to protect their brand image, and keep their market share intact.  

That’s why they use residential proxies to crawl e-commerce sites, auction websites, and other relevant marketplaces. With this approach, businesses can detect fraudsters selling their goods, copyright infringements, and so on. 

  SEO Monitoring 

Search Result Optimization (SEO) should be at the top of the list for any business online. After all, it’s all about driving traffic to your website. However, it can be such an expensive venture hiring SEO service providers. Of course, there are several tools out there that can make your SEO endeavors easier. 

However, did you know that proxies are consistently harnessed in SEO practices, as they can provide different geo-locations? For instance, you can connect to a location on a different side of the world and see how the results are displayed on the search engine to your target audience. 

What’s more, when you carry out SEO research about your competitors, proxies will provide anonymity factor. So finding out answers whether they have a higher ranking than yours will be easy.  Of course, it’s only the basics, but now you know! 

It’s a wrap  

So here it is! Hopefully, by the end of reading this, you have a better understanding of residential proxies. Primarily, why they are used by so many businesses globally. However, if you still have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below!


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