Tag Archives: Google

Creating a Link to Custom View of Custom Google Map

So there is a pretty good amount of information out there about how to customize your view on regular Google Maps. However, several of the API methods do not work when trying to view your own custom map. I am not sure why this is, but it is annoying. After some research and some experimentation I found a small set of variables that the API does accept and work as of writing this article. Hopefully this will be helpful for you as I write many things in here simply as references for my own use when working on my many websites.

This works on your own custom maps you create with Google Maps. The idea is to have one custom map that shows many things. In may case a map of Colorado camping locations.  I write reviews of these campgrounds and want to include a link to my map. But that link needs to zoom into the campground and to center it in the screen.

Camp Out Colorado Campsite Map Normal View

To accomplish this we simply build a url with the proper parameters so that when the user is redirected to the map it also zooms in and centers on the specific campsite.

What We Need to Create a Custom View of Custom Google Map

Custom Map ID

This is found in the URL of the base custom map.

Camp Out Colorado Campground Map: https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?hl=en&authuser=0&mid=1NOd9T5rPujjSZ1h7bQ0CX_x-jEE

What we are looking for is mid. Grab everything that is after the “=” and before the “&” if it is there.

Longitude and Latitude

This can easily be found by opening a normal Google Map and select “What’s here?” This will give you a small infobox with what is there along with the exact longitude and latitude. Copy that.

In my case it is: 39.34385,-106.61257

Zoom Level

This is up to you. I like a zoom of 10-14 depending on how close in you want your map to zoom. I have a lot of campsites on the map and many are relatively close to each other. So I zoom in close to really make sure they know which one it is.

Create Link to Custom View of Custom Google Map

Start with the map viewer;

  • https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?

Then add your map id;

  • mid=1NOd9T5rPujjSZ1h7bQ0CX_x-jEE

Then add your zoom index, make sure to begin separating parameters with “&”.

  • z=14

Lastly add in your longitude and latitude together in one parameter.

  • ll=39.34385%2C-106.61257

So the final URL looks like;

https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?mid=1NOd9T5rPujjSZ1h7bQ0CX_x-jEE&z=14&ll=39.34385%2C-106.61257

There are other things that can be done but I will not go into those now. This should help to be able to simply create a custom map link that will zoom into the required spot.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions to make this easier or better.

Now, to figure out how to embed a zoomed in custom map into a page.

 

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Avoid Google SERP Penalty Make Sure Website is Mobile Friendly

Google is rolling out some changes this week that are going to penalize websites that are not mobile ready. It’s rare that they warn about upcoming changes so I think it is safe to assume that if your website is not mobile ready, according to Google, that you may experience a sharp decline in Google listing.

To check your website use the following tool: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/

Even if you think your site is mobile friendly use the above tool. I was using some older themes and had customized them so that they appeared mobile friendly. Such as scaling for smaller devices, but the Google Mobile Friendly tool still saw them as not ready. It’s important that that tool shows that your website is mobile friendly. The best thing to do is to change your website theme to something that is advertised as 100% mobile friendly. Once you change, test it immediately to be sure that it is. Some say they are responsive when in reality they are still failing Googles Mobile Friendly test. Once you find one that you like then go about fine tuning it into what you would like your website to look like.

It’s hard to recommend a specific one, because each website has its own needs. So the best thing to do is search for “Responsive” web themes.

Here are a few I am testing out on a couple different websites. I run websites that are cookie cutter pages to fully customized.

  • Twenty Fourteen – WordPress Basic Theme
  • Customizr – Free version has some customization, premium has more.
  • evolve-  Free version has lots customization, premium has more.

Here is the alert sent out by Google.

Is your site mobile-friendly?
Starting April 21, Google Search will be expanding its use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. Double-check nnnnnnnn.com and your other sites are ready for this change by testing pages of your site with the Mobile-Friendly Test tool.
Take Mobile-Friendly Test

This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in Google Search results. Users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results optimized for their devices.

By being mobile-friendly, you’ll benefit too by growing your audience and revenue across all screens.

Responsive Display
My site’s already mobile optimized: do I need to take action?
Even if you already have a mobile-optimized site, it’s worth taking some time to double-check your site’s pages using the Mobile-Friendly Test tool. Also, check out the AdSense Multiscreen Implementation Guide, which covers AdSense implementation best practices to improve monetization on mobile.

Mobile Usability Report
My site isn’t mobile-friendly: how do I get started?
The guide to mobile-friendly sites can help you get started, while you get a full list of mobile usability issues across your sites by logging in to your Webmaster Tools account and using the Mobile Usability Report. You can also check out the AdSense Multi-Screen Starter Guide and post questions to Webmaster Central Forums to get support.

Mobile is critical to your business and will continue to be so. Make sure visitors can have a good experience on your site when they’re visiting from their mobile devices.

See you online,
The Google AdSense Team

Good luck getting your websites upgraded to be Mobile Friendly!

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