Google Maps is my most often “go-to” mapping site. Including a map image on your web page or blog post is a great visual element to supplement your hyper-local content. Instead of posting a snapshot of the map, why not embed the map as an object. As such, your readers can dynamically pan and zoom to get more understanding. Furthermore, if you embed an actual map object, consider also that Google surely associates your map’s geo-location as evidence of your local page content.
What if you wanted to highlight multiple locations in your blog post? Let’s say you wanted to highlight the three different movie theater complexes closest to a neighborhood. Wouldn’t it be nice to show a map with the three placemarkers highlighting the locations? Consider also, how bounded areas are nice to illustrate a location. Perhaps, you are drawing a boundary line around a neighborhood or school district. Google lets you do all of this and you can also save your custom map and embed it in your blog or web page.
To save your custom maps, the first thing you will need to do is get a free Google account. At any of the google pages (such as the main search page, or maps page) in the upper right you will see the links that you need either to sign in by using your email address (if you already have an account) or to click that you want a new account and there are just a few questions and you will be on your way.
Once you are signed in to Google, you are ready to start creating custom maps that you can use on your web pages. The following video tutorial will show you how to do it (runtime: 20 minutes)