Hello, I have 2 suggestions after using the Outscraper tool for several projects.
The first is limitations caused by the fact that Google has 5500 search categories, many of which are redundant. The limit of 50,000 queries per running script means that only 9 zipcodes can be searched for a master list of all businesses in an area (9 x 5500 is 49500).
To get around this, I first tried to compress the list using ChatGPT, but it can’t handle that much text. Eventually I discovered that Instagram has a list of categories and businesses that is only 1075 long, and condenses many of the items down. Here’s an example of Instagram’s bottom 3 categories vs how Google handles them:
yoga retreat center
yoga retreat centre
youth clothing shop
youth clothing store
youth social services organization
It condenses the Google version of restaurants (367) to only 83 with Instagram.
The second suggestion I have is the use of selecting multiple zipcodes or towns by Counties (only available via custom search instead of dropdown) which combines all towns within a county together. I’m collecting data for Montgomery County in Maryland and I had to manually select 25 towns to get the correct list. Here’s an example of what that looked like by using 2 tabs open to manually select:
I hope others might find this useful in the future. Good luck in your research and data scraping!
The list that I copied can be found here, I pasted it into Excel to remove all formatting:
If you wish to add all of the United States regional Counties, you can find a list here:
Please note that Zipcodes and Regional County Codes are both listed (and are different) - to create search functionality for County, one can design a dataset in which selecting a Regional County includes all related zip codes or city+states.
PS - If you launch the ability to search by regional county, it would also be great to have an affiliate program so I can recommend Outscraper to others. Thank you!
First thank you for asking the question about counties. I was about to ask the same question. My target is San Diego county which has 106 postal codes. A “state & county” query would be perfect.
Second thank you for the data resource. Here is the link to where I downloaded all the California “counties & cities & postal codes” which could be a good starting point for others who read this in the future:
By repositioning the columns in the download css file I was able to order by county, city and then postal code. Good stuff.
As the screenshot shows, there is a population column which helps with target marketing. Plus the “Primary Official County Code” which potentially could be used for the Outscraper county query.
Thank you for your example! You also can find Businesses Categories Sorted By Number Of Appearances here: Key Google Maps Business Categories | Outscraper. The top 500 categories from that list can be used to get 99% of the data 10 times faster.