Google Maps licensing explained
If you choose to use Google Maps with your store locator, Stockist powers the map and search in your store locator using a Google Maps license key provided by you.
How Google Maps licensing works
It's important to note that Google Maps services aren't licensed to you by us (Stockist), they're provided directly to your website by Google using a license key which you get from Google.
Google offers a free tier of map usage for each website, which is enough for around 10,000 visits to your store locator page per month. (The exact number varies depending on the settings you choose and how your website's visitors use your locator.) 99% of Stockist clients use less than the free limit, so for most Stockist clients there are no additional fees and nothing to worry about. However, if your store locator is especially popular and exceeds the limit, Google will charge any map usage overages directly to the site owner.
By taking advantage of the free monthly usage that Google provides to each site, we don't need to bundle the cost of map usage into our plans, which allows us to offer competitive prices.
If you're concerned about the possibility of extra charges, consider using Mapbox instead. Mapbox doesn't require you to provide billing details, so there's no concern about incurring extra cost.
How Stockist uses Google Maps services
Google's map platform includes a variety of services. Here's a breakdown of the ones used by Stockist:
|Service name||What it's used for||When it's used|
|Geocoding API||Converting places or addresses into map coordinates (latitude and longitude)||Each time a visitor searches for a typed-in location|
|Places Autocomplete API||Displaying address suggestions while typing||Each time a visitor types a letter into the search box, if you've enabled address suggestions|
How Google Maps billing works
Starting June 11th, 2018, Google's billing is based on the combined monthly usage of all services listed above. Google provides a $200 free monthly credit which is deducted from the combined cost of all services used. If your total usage is under $200, Google's mapping service is completely free. If your total usage is over $200, your maps may stop displaying once you reach the free quota limit, or you can set up a billing account with Google to pay for the additional usage over $200.
As of June 2018, here is Google's current pricing for the services used by Stockist:
|Service name||Cost per 1,000 uses|
|Geocoding API||$5.00 USD|
|Places Autocomplete API||$2.83 USD|
The most up-to-date price list is available directly from Google.
How to calculate monthly map service costs
Here's a hypothetical example explaining how costs are calculated. If you estimate that:
- Each visitor searches for one address by typing it into the locator (uses Geocoding API)
- Each visitor types an average of 5 characters to find their city or postal code using the address suggestions (uses Places Autocomplete API)
Then the costs would be calculated as follows:
|Service name||Uses||Cost per 1,000 uses||Total cost|
|Places Autocomplete API||25,000||$2.83||$70.75|
|Google's free credit||- $200.00|
In this example, since the combined price of Google's map services is under $200, this hypothetical account would not incur any fees from using Google's services.
Tips for reducing costs
If you're concerned you may be near Google's free usage limit, please see our page containing a few tips to reduce your map usage without compromising the functionality of your store locator.
If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch using the Contact Us link at the top of the page - we're here to help!