Google or Mapbox? What provider should I choose.

To render the map on your store locator widget Storemapper is using 3rd party mapping services providers. At the moment we support two of them: Google and Mapbox.

Let’s compare these providers using the following areas:

  • Map Data & Services
  • Customization
  • Cost

Map Data & Services

Google is using his own Google’s data

Mapbox – relies on OpenStreetMaps and crowd-sourced geographical data

Apart from actual map data, your Storemapper is using additional services to provide you with store locator functionality.

It’s Geocoding – conversion of human-readable address into a pair of coordinates (lat/long). Without this, you won’t be able to place your locations on the map and make them searchable.

Another handy feature is Autocompletion. Whenever your end-user inputs something in the search field he/she gets a list of addresses suggestions. This is the best way to get better input searches and improve the users experience with your store locator.

Both Google and Mapbox support Geocoding and Autocompletion.

Google or Mapbox? Google has access to huge data streams that no ordinary company can afford access to. OpenStreetMap used by Mapbox does not have a robust database for developing countries and information displayed on 4th or 5th zoom level could be insufficient. Google is considered to be more accurate.

Customization

Every map provider gives you a way to customize the look of the underlying map and its geographical objects like water, roads, country labels e.t.c

Google Maps uses CSS-like syntax that you can add to your store locator account and it will be loaded on the fly. You can use Snazzy Maps to create your own style or get a free one from the large list of already created presets.

You can control the visibility, color, and opacity of every visual element on the map. However, you cannot use custom textures, nor provide separate styles at each zoom level

Snazzy Maps catalog

Mapbox went a bit farther with this. It opens its entire platform for customization. You can use Mapbox Studio – a powerful tool where you can customize your map, create re-usable datasets. You can get very granular with styling and create unique designs.

Custom maps by Mapbox designers
Mapbox Studio UI

Google or Mapbox? Mapbox gives you more options for map customization, so if you want to create a unique map and go very creative, then choose Mapbox!

Cost

For years Google used to be 100% free but that changed in 2011 and later in 2018 they decreased their free usage quota and raised prices significantly. Happily we have less expensive alternatives and Mapbox is one of them. Let’s run through the costs:

 GoogleMapbox
Free usage quota (per month)28,000 map loads50,000 map loads
Price after free usage$7 per 1000 map loads$0.50 per 1000 map loads

Please, find costs break down depending on map usage

Map loads / moGoogleMapbox
10,000FREEFREE
50,000$154FREE
100,000$504$25
250,000$1243.20$100
500,000ENTERPRISE$225

Google or Mapbox? Mapbox is definitely WAY CHEAPER than Google. If your map usage goes above Google free quota, you’d definitely want to switch to Mapbox.

Lastly! If you want to check store locators running on Google vs Mapbox please see the following links:

Google

https://www.storemapper.com/demo

https://www.beardbrand.com/pages/our-retailers

https://firenzapizza.getbento.com/locations-map/

Mapbox

https://ezpzfun.com/authorized-retailers

https://www.onofriends.com/authorized-retailers

https://www.yummymummyfood.com.au/find-a-store-near-you/


Ready to change mapping provider for your store locator?

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