The times were you arduously opened, folded and turned old-school paper maps are over. No more searching the right street with your index finger. The virtual map has long out ruled the one out of paper. Whatever you need, if it is the best way to your holiday destination or the fastest directions to the restaurant where you have never been, Google Maps hast the answer to it.
Most people use Google Maps in their daily life. But what exactly is the virtual map able to do?
Google Maps can calculate directions. The user can choose if toll roads should be included or not, if the car, the bike or public transport is used or if it is preferred to walk. Even the approximate amount of fuel needed is calculated by the service. The map can change between three different designs. There is the usual map design, the earth view and the terrain design. The user can switch between them and use the one that is preferred. However, not only the calculated route is shown. Also companies, shops, restaurants or other buildings like hotels are on Google Maps. Additionally the user can retrieve information and photos to these buildings. With Google Street View you can see interactive photos of streets, buildings and squares. Though these are not real time photos, but pictures taken at some point at this place, users get a first impression of the surroundings and can visit places they have never been before in real life.
What is actually shown in real time is how traffic is doing. Google Maps is providing information to traffic jams and, if using the navigation tool, will provide an alternative route. Maps is using the principle of a traffic light to show how the traffic situation is. It reaches from green for fast till dark red for slow and the colors are shown on the streets in the map. Regarding public transport the tool “Transit” shows current departure times, as well as the nearest bus stops or train stations.
Owners of restaurants, companies or similar are able to upload information like photos or building plans of their locations. With the tool “Indoors” people are then able to virtually walk into the buildings on Google Maps. This way they can get an impression of the restaurant and can decide if a visit is worth it. Or get information on how the building is laid out before a job interview to find their way around more easily.
The use of Google Maps is like many other services of Google for free. This accounts also to the embedded Maps on the websites of others. This is what is called Google Maps API and means Google Maps “Application Programming Interface”. Thanks to API’s it is possible that two different programs are communicating with each other. For instance, hotels are showing their available apartments and rooms on a Google Map on their own website. This would not be possible without APIs. To add Google Maps via API to your website requires at least basic knowledge of programming. Our Google Maps Code is easy and fast to integrate to your website – for everybody, not just for professionals.
With Google Maps it got incredibly easy to get from point A to point B and at the same time getting information about the wanted destination. Additionally the provided directions are the fastest and easiest way to get there. Also if you are already out and about you can use the service. With the Google Maps App and the mobile version it is possible to use Maps with mobile devices like smartphones or tablets.
Another benefit of Google Maps is the tool “Search Nearby”. With this the users can find the next car shop or dentist in their surroundings. It is seen that being on Google Maps pays off. Also because your ranking on the usual Google Search will be better too, means you are placed higher up.
If users do not know where exactly your street is, they can see on the embedded Google Map next to the address other things they might recognize and know that you are not far away from them. Immediately they can calculate the route to your address. Both parties are obviously benefitting from an embedded Google Map.