HT Direct People to Map Locations Without A Physical Address

Image of someone using map plus codes in a taxi to get to RMR2+97 which is my officeGetting any business or organization discoverable on maps & GPS is at times a difficult and complicated task that even pros struggle with at times (I’ve had my challenges).

For rural businesses or those in high-density areas – the problems compound. I address these mapping challenges often and can usually work through them in short order.

But recently I was looking into how I could guide people to a location that didn’t have a physical address or was located within a large space (inside or outside). While these situations might seem unusual, they are quite common.

  • Emergency stations & shelter check-ins
  • Farmers & food markets like Reading Terminal Market, Phila (<love)
  • Food trucks & vending carts
  • Group meeting location
  • Information booths (national park)
  • Mobile blood-donation stops
  • Race check-in & first-aid stations
  • Showers at an outdoor concert (just sayin’)
  • Temporary municipal or emergency buildings
  • Tour operator ticket booths
  • Trade show booths (thinking of you PRI)
  • VIP & special needs entrances
  • Water-based businesses like SailTime

Each of these locations can be difficult to pinpoint to an exact location on a map without an actual address. Sure, you can come close most of the time, but I’m talking about guiding people to an exact map coordinate – not an address.

The solution is refreshingly simple. Just use Map Plus Codes to inform or promote where people can find you.

A Map Plus Code is a series of characters that relate to an actual point on a map – not an address (although, it can be) and works anywhere in the world without requiring a special application (like QR codes).

Creating these Map Plus Codes (MPC) is super easy using Google Maps in just a few steps. I’ve outlined three scenarios which should cover most needs.

Scenario 1 – when you are physically at the location (mobile) – useful for when you arrive at a destination and need to generate a map code

  1. Open Google Maps and make certain your location settings are ON
  2. Press and hold your finger on the area of the map you will be until a map pin appears
  3. Click on the address or where it says, “Dropped Pin” and scroll to the bottom of the page where you see the five blue dots (below)
  4. The first string of numbers and letters is the code!
                                                           map-plus-code-icon.jpg

Scenario 2 – to pre-generate an MPC from a (mobile) map view – use this format to generate a map code in advance of arriving at the location

  1. Open Google Maps and make certain your location settings are ON
  2. Search for the location near your interest
  3. Press and hold your finger on the area of the map you will be until a map pin appears
  4. Click on the address or where it says, “Dropped Pin” and scroll to the bottom of the page where you see the five blue dots.
  5. Same as above – the first string of numbers and letters is the code

Scenario 3 – if using a PC

  1. Like scenario two, but click and hold your cursor on the map until a pin appears
  2. Click on the latitude/longitude coordinates in the address bar that opens open at the bottom of the page
  3. Your MPC appears in the left within the information bar next to

To use this code, all someone needs to do is type in your short Map Plus Code (MPC) into their search bar, and it will be decoded as an actual map location right down to an exact latitude and longitude. Try it RMR2+97

Use these codes as you would a regular address in print, promote them on social – TV- or radio media, or add them to a website. I would advise however giving viewers instruction to enter the MPC in their browsers (PC or mobile) as MPCs are not universally known just yet.

If you are currently using MPCs or decide to give it a go, please reply with how you are using them so that others can learn from your experience.

#mappluscodes

About Chris Sheehy

Chris has been helping businesses increase online leads since 1997. Experienced, published, University SEO course instructor, speaker & presenter. Experience pays dividends - more info at https://sidewalkbranding.co
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