How to choose residential proxies for sneakers copping

Sneaker proxies is a crucial part of the game. You can have the best sneaker bot in the world, but if the proxies you're using are not quality, your copping results will be disappointing. In this article we will go through the key things to have in mind when choosing proxies for sneaker releases.

A proxy, sometimes known as a proxy server is a gateway that allows you to access websites through another internet connection, not your own. Essentially, a proxy masks your home IP address from appearing on the websites you’re browsing, showing the proxy IP instead.

Retailers, such as Yeezy or Footlocker, don't want to sell their limited edition kicks to one person. This is why these websites implement anti-botting measures, to make sure that as many people get a chance to actually buy a pair. One of the simplest way to implement that is to check the IP that visitors are using to access the website, get in the queue, and buy sneakers at the checkout. If they see too many session from one IP address, they will simply block it, or even worse, provide false data. You might think you're just a one click away from a brand new hot pair of shoes, but the reality is much less positive. 

To maximize your chances of buying new kicks, you need session from multiple IP addresses, so that sneaker websites think all these sessions are from actual, real humans and customers. That can only happen if you're using proxies.

Not all proxies are made equal. There are basically two types of them: data center proxies and residential proxies. Data center proxies are identified by most IP databases as providing data center services, such web hosting. This mean, that if websites like Footlocker uses these databases, they will also be able to identify data center proxies. If you see an IP from AWS, chances are that behind it is a bot, rather than a real home user. It's not always the case, but it's certain enough to block such IP.

Residential proxies on the other hand are identified as being used to provide residential internet connectivity. For example, if you have a DSL/Broadband/Fiber internet in your home provided by AT&T, Comcast or Sky, you will get an IP that will be considered residential. Foot-sites, mesh websites and other will also see such IPs as residential. In such case, chances are there is a human being at the other end of the connection, actually trying to buy a pair of sneakers. There is no need to ban such IP.

In the long run, residential proxies are much better option when it comes to sneaker copping. They are much harder to identify as having sneaker bots behind them. Checkout success rate is much higher, most of the time is impossible to compare the two.

What to look when choosing residential proxy provider for sneaker releases?

- Number of Proxies. Some providers boasts having 100M+ IPs. Make sure that's actually true, not just a marketing trick. Bear in mind, they can have these proxies in locations that are not important. It's very hard to buy sneakers with proxies not from US, Canada or UK. Make sure your provider has a significant amount of proxies in Tier 1 locations.

- Speed. If have to waiting for 20-40 seconds to load up the page, that pair of sneakers you were hoping to get might already be gone. Residential proxies are slower than data center proxies in general, and since they are running on retail grade hardware, they can handle less load and become slower. You will only see the real speed during sneaker releases, when your provider is actually handling the load. But before that, you should look for reviews or ask them directly how fast they are when it really matters.

- IP Quality. This might be self-explanatory, but you should check IP quality before hand. Some residential proxy provider will give a pool of proxies which is actually a mix between regular residential proxies (high quality), ISP proxies (medium quality), and data center proxies (low quality). If the ratio is not in favor for residential proxies, chances are you're going to have some poor experience when trying to buy proxies.