Legally Scrape YouTube Data

Download to Excel & CSV Files via API

Unlike screen scrapers, our no-code platform exports data directly from YouTube's Official API so you can download extracted data seamlessly. This means no breaking code, getting blocked, overpriced proxies or incorrect data.

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YouTube Data

Whether you’re a YouTube influencer or social media agency looking for valuable insights on the pulse of YouTube, having access to raw data about videos, channels, statistics & more can be a huge resource. For example, researchers are performing sentiment analysis on video comments, analyzing search results and creating useful data insights from information collected from all of YouTube.

Are You Using YouTube Data?

Using publicly available data from YouTube is not only profitable, but extremely easy as YouTube offers a free API that anyone can legally use for extracting data from YouTube, all with YouTube’s blessing. We’ll quickly cover why this is the best way to scrape data from YouTube and explain how to get started.

Using a YouTube Scraper

Odds are this isn’t the first article you’ve read on YouTube scraping, as nearly every other site advocates using a “screen scraping” approach to gather data directly from YouTube’s website. This would mean web scraping individual YouTube web pages for specific bits of data, such as YouTube videos, YouTube comments, the video title from search results & more.

If you scrape YouTube via these unofficial methods, it’s not only extremely unreliable but also a direct violation of the YouTube Terms of Service, making any data scraped from a YouTube channel or web page questionable in terms of accuracy and legality.

Illegal Web Scraping

While it’s not illegal for you to violate YouTube’s Terms of Service on your own, it is illegal for a third party, such as a web scraping company, to help you scrape YouTube and violate their terms. Furthermore, it’s just not a good idea to use a web scraping tool that relies on breaking YouTube’s rules, especially as they’re known to make constant changes to the YouTube platform, breaking most screen scrapers in the process.

Most Third Party YouTube Scrapers are Illegal

Do you really want to depend on a web scraping service that’s likely to get sued in the future? You may even become part of the lawsuit in the discovery process and any extracted data you use could serve as evidence!

Additionally, any desktop-run scraping tool or web scraper running on your computer will jeopardize your IP address and reputation, resulting in being blocked & banned from YouTube! Chrome plugins can also be guilty of this and get you banned from YouTube for automated scraping activity; always be very careful installing any sort of browser plugin!

Browser Scraping Plugins can be Dangerous

You may also have seen some YouTube videos on building your own YouTube scraper with a Python module or Selenium for browser automation. While these may have worked in the past, many are likely currently broken as YouTube is constantly updating its website, making it difficult for screen scrapers to reliably extract data with so many changes to the YouTube frontend.

Scrape YouTube Legally via Official API

YouTube is not only a top social media platform, but also the second most popular search engine in the world, only behind Google. But unlike Google, YouTube offers an Official Data API to download YouTube video data, comments & much more.

YouTube Data API V3

This data is invaluable for anyone monitoring their own YouTube search engine optimization, performing content research, analyzing comments or building entirely new ways to collect data for research.

YouTube API Pricing

All of this data sounds so valuable in fact, you may be wondering just how much it costs. Well the good news is that if you need to make a moderate amount of queries, it’s absolutely free! YouTube provides a pretty generous usage quota (up to 10,000 API requests per day depending on how much data you get back).

Scrape YouTube Data for Free via API

We’ve yet to encounter a customer who needed to pay for API usage, so odds are you will not need to spend any money on YouTube API access for your project, assuming your goals are realistic (e.g. you’re not trying to scrape all YouTube videos in existence).

Light Usage

If you’re performing a very simple query like the YouTube API Get Video URL Endpoint, you’ll incur a minimal quota charge as you’re just getting back identifying information about a video such as the video title, video ID and other basic information just for a single video.

Medium Usage

But if you’re using the YouTube Channel API for example to call the YouTube Channel Statistics API for channel info, channel name, description, subscriber count, channel view count, age of the channel, and other channel data based on a channel ID, then it may cost say 2 units per request, so in this example you’d be limited to only 5,000 requests per day (please check the official YouTube docs for exact numbers, this is just an example).

Heavy Usage

And some use cases like the YouTube API Get All Videos from Playlist Endpoint will require pagination to scrape the full list of videos for a playlist ID. This means you will need to make multiple requests (per page) if a playlist contains many videos (say over 100), so you’ll incur a credit cap based on how many pages you need to scrape to collect all of the playlist videos.

Each time you make a request to get information about a specific video will count as another request in your quota usage. So for example, to get video likes, view count, number of comments, video description, etc… will require an additional request. The same goes for scraping video comments - you’ll need to make additional requests when fetching each page of comments.

Get Started with YouTube API Scraping

You may be hesitant to use an API because it sounds complicated, but we’ll do our best here to show you how to get started extracting information in a few easy steps.

Scraping YouTube is Easy with their Free API

All you need to get started is a Google Account and basic knowledge of making HTTP requests. If this is too complex, we explain how to use our scraping service at the end, which lets you download CSV files of YouTube data with just a few clicks!

Get Your YouTube API Key

The first step to getting YouTube data from the API is to obtain a key from the Google Developer Platform. We’ve created a step-by-step guide on How to Get a YouTube Key in 5 Minutes and legally scrape thousands of videos, channels, comments & more per month.

Copy your Key

Scraping YouTube Search Results

We’ll start with a simple example of scraping search results from YouTube’s Data API using the YouTube API Search List Endpoint for the search term “beer.”

curl --request GET '$API_KEY'

Replace $API_KEY with your own key we mentioned earlier. You can also just query the full URL in a web browser, since it’s a simple GET request without any headers. Your response will look something like this:

  "kind": "youtube#searchListResponse",
  "etag": "APJ66SWxT6NXh5BQp21zbcHQXJI",
  "nextPageToken": "CDIQAA",
  "regionCode": "US",
  "pageInfo": {
    "totalResults": 1000000,
    "resultsPerPage": 50
  "items": [
      "kind": "youtube#searchResult",
      "etag": "5hxvPhBM7fCUpUgOyCyXCpfnVQ4",
      "id": {
        "kind": "youtube#video",
        "videoId": "cU0g-Ut0Kqc"
      "snippet": {
        "publishedAt": "2022-08-31T15:08:51Z",
        "channelId": "UCXnyK-TfLyZ8O6aXXFk76jg",
        "title": "Is beer better than wine with food? | The Craft Beer Channel",
        "description": "This week we're down at Westminster Catering College's Escoffier restaurant for an incredible four-course beer and food ...",
        "thumbnails": {
          "default": {
            "url": "",
            "width": 120,
            "height": 90
          "medium": {
            "url": "",
            "width": 320,
            "height": 180
          "high": {
            "url": "",
            "width": 480,
            "height": 360
        "channelTitle": "The Craft Beer Channel",
        "liveBroadcastContent": "none",
        "publishTime": "2022-08-31T15:08:51Z"

Coding Your Own Youtube Scraper

While you’re welcome to access the YouTube Data API via your web browser or through cURL commands, it’s not the most useful way to collect data. You will ideally want to work with the data in a CSV file where you can upload it into many different tools and services to make sense of the scraped data.

code, coding, computer

If you’re set on having the most control over your scraping and are comfortable with coding, we recommend checking out the Python Google API Client as it queries the official YouTube API and will not suddenly break like other Python modules that attempt to scrape YouTube’s website. While the library doesn’t offer native CSV file exports, you’ll be able to achieve this with basic Python knowledge. You can also look for other API clients, just make sure they actually use the official API!

Scraping YouTube with Stevesie

If you’d rather not build your own YouTube scraper (or use an illegal one), we can help you scrape YouTube data directly from the official API into downloadable CSV files here via our freemium service. All you need to do is provide your API key and we help you make requests on your behalf, converting the raw data from YouTube into downloadable CSV files.

Scrape YouTube Videos from Search Results

To get started, try using the YouTube API Video Search Results Scraper to start scraping video data from YouTube search, such as video titles & video links.

Basic Plan

You can use our basic plan to download individual API endpoint results as CSV files, one at a time. This is great if you’re just getting started and don’t need a lot of data yet. For example, using our search example above, we can scrape the first 50 search results using the YouTube API Video Search Results Scraper, which will let you experiment and download CSV files of video information:

Plus Plan

Our plus plan will scrape up to thousands of YouTube videos, channels, comments, playlists & more from YouTube on your behalf, performing pagination for you and combining multiple search terms together. This can help you keep track of search result rankings for a list of keywords relevant to your business.

And unlike Python modules, our system is completely cloud-based and scalable. Hence, we can run jobs for you that take hours (e.g. scraping 1,000s of videos’ comments) effortlessly on our system while you focus on how you’re going to use this data effectively.

Need More YouTube Scraping Functionality?

Our platform is 100% customizable! If you need to add or change some parameters for any endpoint, simply clone the endpoint and make your changes (which will only be visible to you). You can also tweak your own workflows for bulk data collection and add or remove extractors to capture different types of data returned automatically. Simply reach out to support if you need any help with this!

Legal Compliance

We offer our service as a generic “platform as a service” that can be used with any data API. Therefore, we require all users to supply their own API keys to access third party APIs.

By using our service with the YouTube API, you must review and comply with the YouTube API Terms of Service and Privacy Policies when generating your key.

Posted by steve on Sept. 28, 2023, 8:37 p.m. 🚩  Report

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👥  Contributors: steve
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