While Google Maps is very powerful, it does not do what Store Finder does. In this article we will examine the two options.
In 2005 Google stunned the world with its remarkable Google Maps system. Since then they have evolved this service into a system which many people are taking advantage of. Unfortunately, there are several obstacles in the way of using Google in the capacity of a store locator…
PROBLEMS WITH USING GOOGLE MAPS AS A STORE LOCATOR
- Google Maps are not guaranteed as they are a completely free service and the company has no obligations to the client.
- Their service, format and even their APIs can change completely without notice. Any software dependent on the system would then instantly fail and need to be rewritten.
- There are plans of introducing advertising on Google Maps in the near future (potentially advertising competitors).
- The Google API is extremely complex and requires many hours to get going.
- Google does not offer any technical support whatsoever, and you will never be able to phone them for assistance.
- Their terms and conditions go for many pages, put many restrictions on Google Map usage and the legal aspects are so complex they require a IT Lawyer to understand them.
- Google Maps do not allow nearest outlet matching – a key feature required in a store locator
- Google is a foreign-owned company
Store Finder does not suffer from any of these problems.
CONNECTING TO GOOGLE MAPS
Connecting Google Maps to your website is a protracted process which requires significant technical competency. It can take many hours or even days to perform. Following are the steps involved:
- Register with Google (including accepting their terms and conditions)
- Obtain a unique API key
- Read the API developer guide
- Read myriad Blogs and forums to help get you started
- Design, code and test
- Go live
- Identify and fix bugs (an ongoing process)
STORE FINDER IS EASY
In contrast to Google Maps, connecting to Store Finder is extremely easy and requires virtually no technical knowledge. Store Finder has been designed for normal people, and can be up and running in less than an hour.
How can Store Finder be better than Google Maps as a Store Locator? – The reason is that Store Finder is a dedicated, specialist application designed to perform one thing extremely well.
CONNECTING TO STORE FINDER
Establishing Store Finder takes half an hour and can be done by anyone with the most basic HTML knowledge. The connection process consists of the following:
- Register with Store Finder and read three simple plain English pages of terms and conditions
- Upload your outlet data in Excel spreadsheet format
- Add two simple lines of HTML code to your website to go live.
UNLIKE GOOGLE MAPS, STORE FINDER GIVES YOU …
|Very simple, yet powerful dedicated store locator system|
|Advanced features such as Data Guard, Logging, and Customised Look & Feel|
|Our maps and postcodes are always kept up-to-date|
|No advertising on our results pages guaranteed, ever|
|It can be up and running in minutes|
|A plain English manual and terms and conditions|
|Free telephone technical support|
While we think very highly of Google Maps, they are not a store locator. If however, you have the time and expertise, you can shoehorn them into behaving like one.
Store Finder represents a perfectly crafted solution to meet the needs of companies requiring nearest store lookup functionality for their business. It can be up and running in minutes and does not require a computer science degree to make it work.