Chen Cuello
MAY 4, 2023
5 min read
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The data extraction techniques are essential for the data migration process and the management of the retrieval or collection of data from multiple sources. 

Simply put, data extraction is the cornerstone of cleaning and organizing data, preparing it for storage in particular storage systems, or using it for data analytics. Moreover, data extraction is critical for copying raw data, analysis, and retention in cloud-based systems and the ETL process.

In this guide, we will dive into the different data extraction types, the process of extracting data in the ETL integration process, and much more!

What is Data Extraction?

Data extraction is a process of collecting different data types from various sources, such as storage systems, apps, and cloud-based platforms for further processing, transformation, or storing purposes.

What is The Need for Data Extraction?

The data extraction process has numerous benefits, including consolidating and unifying different data sets for further transformation and loading into the targeted system. Data extraction is critical for improving data access, standardization, and guaranteeing data quality for analytics. 

On top of that, data extraction is essential for the ETL (extraction-transformation-load) data integration model of data ingestion from multiple sources into a centralized storage system, like an app or cloud-based software.

What is Data Extraction in ETL?

The data extraction techniques in ETL are methods companies use to extract and unify raw data from multiple sources. For example, SaaS platforms, for transformation and loading purposes into the targeted system or the data lake.

Data extraction from multiple sources in ETL enables the cleaning, merging, and transforming of data into a consumable format for the targeted storage systems. Extraction is the beginning of the ETL process before the transformation and the loading of the extracted data.

Different Types of Data Extraction

Businesses use different data extraction types, such as manual, traditional OCR- based, template-based, or AI-enabled methods. Each method uses particular data extraction techniques in data warehousing, various targeted storage systems, and different extraction toolsets.

Manual Data Extraction

Aside from template-based extraction, manual data extraction methods are among the most widely accepted alternatives to other data extraction types. It’s a manual process of extracting data from various databases without software or software tools. Although manual extraction is very time-consuming and prone to errors, businesses widely use it to perform competitive analysis.

Traditional OCR-based Data Extraction

OCR (Optical Character Recognition) extraction uses data extraction tools and techniques for automating the extraction process from written or printed text and scanned documents. The main perk of OCR-based extraction is that it goes well and it’s complementary to the other data extraction types. 

In simple words, the traditional OCR-based data extraction transforms the images of the physical sources (written, printed, or scanned documents) into a readable format for the targeted software.

Template-based Data Extraction

Template-based data extraction models use predefined and reusable template schemes for particular data sets and storage systems. An example of template-based data extraction models would be the predefined patterns for text mining and data extraction from unstructured business reports.

AI-enabled Data Extraction

The name says it all! AI-enabled data extraction applies Artificial Intelligence (AI) in extracting different data sets from multiple sources. AI-enabled extraction is a unified data tool that can help businesses optimize their operations, extract info and load it into any storage system or data lake. 

AI-enabled extraction is currently popular in network marketing and e-commerce monitoring. Experienced companies, like Rivery, frequently use coding languages to enable customers to tailor their particular AI (Artificial intelligence) data extraction.

Types of Data Extraction in ETL

ETL (extraction-transformation-load) offers businesses different data extraction techniques for unifying their data sets for the targeted storage system or data lake. That’s why professional and specialized companies that provide ETL data extraction services for faster scalability and quicker transfers for higher data volumes. The following are the two most popular data extraction types in ETL. 

Logical Extraction

The ETL’s logical extraction techniques use APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) to communicate with multiple devices’ software and operating systems and extract data from them. There’s incremental or full-data logical extraction. The first one extracts all the data from the source system at once, while the latter uses software tools that recognize the delta changes of the data based on time and date.

The most common practical example of ETL logical extraction is data extraction from a cell phone, tablet, or any other mobile device. The logical extraction can retrieve data from APIs, flat files, or housing information.

Physical Extraction

Physical extraction requires more effort and is a more time-consuming process as organizations extract data bit-by-bit from the targeted device’s memory or storage system. Unlike logical extraction, physical extracts hidden or deleted files from the particular mobile device software. 

We can divide the physical data extraction techniques into two subcategories: online and offline physical extraction. Online extraction is a more popular option when the data is extracted directly from the source of the targeted data warehouse. On the other hand, offline extraction doesn’t use direct connections because the extraction applies extraction routines outside the source.

Different Techniques of Data Extraction

We can divide the data extraction techniques into four categories, such as association, classification, clustering, and regression. That’s why specialized companies offer unified data ingestion tools that support various extraction techniques for different data extraction purposes. 


Association data extraction tools and techniques operate and extract info on the relationships within the storage system. Businesses often use association techniques and tools to find dependencies between sets within databases with big data volumes. 

Furthermore, the association method uses the so-called “support” and “confidence” parameters to create patterns within the data source and make it easier for extraction. A frequent use case for the association techniques would be the invoices or receipts data extraction. 


Classification-based extraction techniques are the most widely accepted and simplest data extraction techniques. With a predefined algorithm, these data extraction techniques identify various classes within the database and tailor extraction models for further processing and loading into the data lake or storage system. 

It’s important to know that the classification model categorizes all the data elements into different classes for classification-based extraction. A frequent use case of classification-based data extraction techniques data warehouse would be managing digital mortgage or banking systems.


Clustering data extraction tools and techniques apply algorithms that categorize the various data elements within the database into clusters. The clustering extraction tools analyze the characteristics of the elements within the database and their similarities and differences. 

Data clustering techniques are popular as efficient prerequisites for the proper operations of other extraction, transformation, and loading algorithms within the data pipeline.  A frequent example is the use of clustering when extracting visual data, such as images and posts, where there are many similarities and differences between the various data elements.


Each source or storage system contains data with different variables. The regression data extraction tools and techniques use algorithms to find the dependencies or non-dependencies between these variables.

Regressive data extraction applies different sets of values or so-called “continuous values” to identify the particular variables of various data elements. Organizations usually use regression for finding dependent and non-dependent data elements within texts and documents.


In conclusion, data extraction techniques are crucial for collecting, cleaning, and organizing data from various sources for storage and analysis. They play a significant role in tasks like combining data sets, improving data access, and integrating data into systems.

Different extraction methods serve specific purposes, such as competitive analysis, document data extraction automation, and AI-based optimization. In the ETL process, logical and physical extraction are the primary methods, each offering distinct approaches for data retrieval. Data extraction techniques like association, classification, clustering, and regression help in understanding data relationships and patterns.

Overall, data extraction is fundamental for effective data management, streamlining workflows, and gaining valuable insights from data sources. By leveraging these techniques, businesses can make better decisions and enhance efficiency through improved data utilization and analysis.


What is data extraction in a real-life example?

A real-life example of data extraction would be extraction from rental agreements and forms stored in online software for property management purposes.

What is the process of extraction?

The process consists of locating, identifying, and extracting data from storage systems based on some of the association, classification, clustering, or regression extraction techniques. The last step of the process is preparing the data for processing and transformation.

What are the different techniques of data extraction in a data warehouse?

The most common techniques for data extraction in data warehouses are incremental stream, incremental batch, and full data extraction.

What is data extraction in data mining?

Data extraction techniques in data mining help organizations get insights into data they have previously ignored. In data mining, data extraction uses structured data sources.

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