At the moment, I'm learning and experimenting on the use of web scraping content from different varieties of web pages. But I've come across a common smelly code among several of my applications. I have many repetitive List that has data being append to them.

from requests import get
import requests
import json
from time import sleep
import pandas as pd

url = 'https://shopee.com.my/api/v2/flash_sale/get_items?offset=0&limit=16&filter_soldout=true'
list_name = []
list_price = []
list_discount = []
list_stock = []

response = get(url)
json_data = response.json()

def getShockingSales():
    index = 0
    if response.status_code is 200:
        print('Response: ' + 'OK')
        print('Unable to access')
    total_flashsale = len(json_data['data']['items'])
    total_flashsale -= 1
    for i in range(index, total_flashsale):
        print('Getting data from site... please wait a few seconds')
        while i <= total_flashsale:
            flash_name = json_data['data']['items'][i]['name']
            flash_price = json_data['data']['items'][i]['price']
            flash_discount = json_data['data']['items'][i]['discount']
            flash_stock = json_data['data']['items'][i]['stock']
            i += 1
        if i > total_flashsale:
            print('Task is completed...')

new_panda = pd.DataFrame({'Name': list_name, 'Price': list_price,
                          'Discount': list_discount, 'Stock Available': list_stock})

print('Converting to Panda Frame....')

Would one list be more than sufficient? Am I approaching this wrongly.


2 Answers 2



  1. Remove unnecessary imports
  2. Don't work in the global namespace

    This makes it harder to track bugs

  3. constants (url) should be UPPER_SNAKE_CASE

  4. Functions (getShockingSales()) should be lower_snake_case

  5. You don't break or return when an invalid status is encountered

  6. if response.status_code is 200: should be == instead of is

    There is a function for this though

    response.raise_for_status() this will create an exception when there is an 4xx, 5xx status

  7. Why use a while inside the for and return when finished with the while

    This is really odd! Either loop with a for or a while, not both! Because the while currently disregards the for loop.

    I suggest to stick with for loops, Python excels at readable for loops

    (Loop like a native)

Would one list be more than sufficient? Am I approaching this wrongly.


You don't have the use 4 separate lists, but can instead create one list and add the column names afterwards.


from requests import get
import pandas as pd

URL = 'https://shopee.com.my/api/v2/flash_sale/get_items?offset=0&limit=16&filter_soldout=true'

def get_stocking_sales():
    response = get(URL)
    return [
        (item['name'], item['price'], item['discount'], item['stock'])
        for item in response.json()['data']['items']

def create_pd():
    return pd.DataFrame(
        columns=['Name', 'Price', 'Discount', 'Stock']

if __name__ == '__main__':
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for showing where and what I did wrong and where I can improve and also making them much cleaner! I've followed what you've said and never knew about the if __name__ == '__main__': concept. Really; not only did you help ~ but I've learned more from your insight. Thank you so much~ \$\endgroup\$
    – Minial
    Commented Jan 10, 2019 at 2:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ May I know just to really understand; how does this portion works return[ (item['name'], item['discount'], item['liked_count'], item['stock']) for item in response.json()['data']['items'] ] \$\endgroup\$
    – Minial
    Commented Jan 11, 2019 at 4:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ It is called a list comprehension here is a decent explanation \$\endgroup\$
    – Ludisposed
    Commented Jan 11, 2019 at 8:38


  1. Creating functions that read and modify global variables is not a good idea, for example if someone wants to reuse your function, they won't know about side effects.

  2. index is not useful, and range(0, n) is the same as range(n)

  3. Using == is more appropriate than is in general, hence response.status_code == 200

  4. If response.status_code != 200, I think the function should ~return an empty result~ raise an exception like said by @Ludisposed.

  5. You use json_data["data"]["items"] a lot, you could define items = json_data["data"]["items"] instead, but see below.

  6. Your usage of i is totally messy. Never use both for and while on the same variable. I think you just want to get the information for each item. So just use for item in json_data["data"]["items"]:.

  7. Actually, print("Getting data from site... please wait a few seconds") is wrong as you got the data at response = get(url). Also, sleep(0.5) and sleep(5) don't make any sense.

  8. Speaking from this, requests.get is more explicit.

  9. You can actually create a pandas DataFrame directly from a list of dictionaries.

  10. Actually, if you don't use the response in another place, you can use the url as an argument of the function.

  11. Putting spaces in column names of a DataFrame is not a good idea. It removes the possibility to access the column named stock (for example) with df.stock. If you still want that, you can use pandas.DataFrame.rename

  12. You don't need to import json.

  13. The discounts are given as strings like "59%". I think integers are preferable if you want to perform computations on them. I used df.discount = df.discount.apply(lambda s: int(s[:-1])) to perform this.

  14. Optional: you might want to use logging instead of printing everything. Or at least print to stderr with:

    from sys import stderr

    print('Information', file=stderr)


import requests
import pandas as pd

def getShockingSales(url):
    response = requests.get(url)
    columns = ["name", "price", "discount", "stock"]
    print("Response: OK")
    json_data = response.json()
    df = pd.DataFrame(json_data["data"]["items"])[columns]
    df.discount = df.discount.apply(lambda s: int(s[:-1]))
    print("Task is completed...")
    return df

URL = "https://shopee.com.my/api/v2/flash_sale/get_items?offset=0&limit=16&filter_soldout=true"
df = getShockingSales(URL)
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for your insight~ I've learned more than I could hope for by reading your review. It even helped me solved and fixed a few errors in other areas of my application. I wish I could give you more upvotes v.v \$\endgroup\$
    – Minial
    Commented Jan 10, 2019 at 2:14

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