This is going to be Part 1 of a 2 Part tutorial. In this tutorial, I will go over how to do an easy coordinate based Google Map. In Part 2, I will create the same Map using the very friendly KML system.
There are already a ton of tutorials online on how to learn coding for creating Google Maps using the API. I am a firm believer that once the wheel has been invented, there is no reason to reinvent it, just modify as you deem necessary. This is going to be a short tutorial on how to create a multiple location Google Map with as little coding as necessary.
If you want to learn more about the Google Maps API and learn, I recommend starting at the source: http://code.google.com/apis/maps/
Now that you’ve reviewed that and have a basic understanding of how everything works, I will show you how to create a great google map in a short time.
The first thing you need to do is get a unique map key directly from google here:
This key is free, but if you plan on having more than 500,000 pageviews a day, Google needs to be notified to allow additional provisioning.
Once you have the key, open up notepad and paste and save the key. You will need this later.
Congratulations, you have just completed the most difficult part for this example.
The second step in your Google Map creation is to convert all of your addresses to latitude and longitude coordinates. Luckily for us, this wheel has already been perfected. All you need to do is visit http://www.batchgeocode.com/lookup/
Now, put in your addresses one by one and copy the coordinates to a file. (obviously keep track of which coordinates are directed to each address)
The Third step is just as easy as the second. This time you will go to http://mapmaker.donkeymagic.co.uk/
On this website, all you need to do is put in the coordinates for each location. From there, give each marker a name, and add your additional content. The amazing thing about the additional content is that you can include html tags including links.
*This is where you will need to replace your Google Maps API key in the system with the key for your unique domain.
Now, you have a great google map! If you did everything correctly, you have all address information, phone numbers, and relevant content in one simple and concise tool that utilizes one of Google’s best products.
If you have any questions, please leave a comment and I will respond and alter this tutorial to be as thorough as possible.
In Part 2, I will show you how to create a map utilizing SEO standards to boost you up the organic listings.
As with all online services, please review the individual websites terms & conditions and if you can, donate to these guys. The put a lot of hard work into this system to allow us to create these maps with such easy. Give them a little payback.