Why You Need To Use Proxies For Bots
Using bots is a complex matter, and automation software is no good by itself - it also needs proxies.
15:31 13 December 2022
Sneaker copping is unimaginable without bots. It’s just physically impossible to compete with them manually, and so they have changed the game forever. But using bots is a complex matter, and automation software is no good by itself - it also needs proxies.
What are proxies?
Proxies work as relays between your bot and the internet. They route the connection through a third-party server while changing its IP-related information. In simpler terms, just like you would ask a friend to go and buy sneakers for you, the bot connects to the proxy server and completes purchases in its name.
Changing IP address information is crucial for sneaker copping and other online automation tasks. IPs are a string of numbers that identify every device on the World Wide Web and allow them to communicate with one another. Additionally, IP addresses allow websites to know visitors' location, internet service provider (ISP) and track their activity.
All visitors, including bots, have to provide an IP address. Otherwise, the data transfer won't be possible, and the website will not be accessed. Additionally, if a website believes a bot is connecting to it, it can ban the IP address. The only solution is to use proxies for bots and disguise the original IP address. But not all proxy types are equal when used for sneaker bots.
Types of proxies for bots
Every major bot or automation software has proxy integration capabilities, so it is a no-brainer that you need to use them. But there are some disagreements on what proxies for bots are best. The most common distinction is between residential and datacenter proxies.
Datacenter proxies connect to the internet from data centers, where large amounts of data are stored and transmitted daily. It means the connection is fast and cheap but a little suspicious. IP addresses are created virtually in large numbers and are easy for sneaker websites to detect.
Residential proxies imitate ordinary home connections that are verified by the ISP and use physical devices. Every residential IP address is unique as it can only be assigned to a location once. It draws less attention to your bot but has a slower speed. In most cases, the latter isn't a problem as competition is also using residential connections.
Another distinction is between private and shared proxies. Private ones allow only a single user to access the server, while shared ones cut costs by allowing multiple connections. It is no surprise that private ones are superior in performance and are better suited for sneaker bots.
Over time, sneakerheads started looking for even more personalized proxies as sneaker vendors were limiting connections and banning IPs known to be proxies. Sneaker proxies were born as providers started testing the performance on sneaker websites. The best proxies for bots are usually private residential sneaker proxies.
As with most purchases, not all proxy suppliers provide equal value, and you have to ensure that all of the needed features are covered. Usually, the most beneficial proxies for bots are with the following features:
- Ban-free experience on target websites. It should be a no-brainer but is often overlooked by users and providers, especially with shared proxies.
- Performance is a must for a well-functioning bot. Look for proxies with minimal downtime and fast connection speed.
- Customer support should be available to help you out in case of any issues.
- Geo-targeting capabilities are something all providers market, but only a few provide well enough. Make sure that the locations you need are covered.
- Price is something you should look into, even if sneaker copping will pay for itself eventually.
We understand that finding a product with all these features might not be easy. A great provider is Proxydrop. They are no strangers to sneaker copping, and neither are their proxies.
Reasons to use proxies for bots
Up until now, we covered the basic reason you need to use proxies with bots - they change the IPs allowing the bot to stay anonymous and undetected. A more detailed answer to our question requires analyzing two defense mechanisms of sneaker websites.
IP monitoring is implemented by most websites in one form or another. After all, they have to detect visitors' IP addresses just for the website to function. However, sneaker sites take extreme measures to detect bots and deny sneakerheads of their purchases.
Knowing visitors' IPs means that websites can trace every click. Whether you press buttons unnaturally fast, spend too much time on one page, refresh too often, enter the same payment information or log in to multiple accounts at a time - everything you do is monitored.
Some websites implement a virtual waiting room for managing load and checking the IP addresses, browsers and other information. If something is suspicious or any bot-like activity appears, the website can implement an IP ban or other measures.
CAPTCHAs are one of the most frequent measures against bots. Chances are you have solved them at some point while surfing the web. Simply put, they are tests that only humans can solve. If the visitor cannot pass it, he might be redirected from the website, or even his IP can be banned.
Most sneaker bots cannot solve CAPTCHAs, and they only notify the user asking to do so. It is hard to solve it on time, so there are services implementing CAPTCHA solvers to bots. However, they too have a varying success rate and cost some serious money.
Most of the time, if your bot sees a CAPTCHA, it is already too late. It is better to avoid them in the first place. Proxies can help you here. Switching IP addresses works because tests appear only after numerous suspicions as websites do not want to bother ordinary users with them.
So why do you need to use proxies for bots? The short answer - it hides your IP address. The long one includes discussions about anti-bot measures taken by sneaker websites. In any case, you need to use proxies for bots. Everyone else already does.