Increase Visitor Interaction, Build Trust & Confidence with Guests
An informative and interactive local map is the great way for guests to plan their holiday in your area. It gives you an opportunity to showcase all the best highlights around you. These local highlights could include restaurants, pubs, activities, favourite tourist attractions, landmarks, best viewpoints, personal recommendations, guest offers and more. By adding a local visitor guide to your website you will increase visitor interaction, build trust & confidence with guests looking to book with you.
You are the ‘Local Expert’
Guests love recommendations & ideas when they go on holiday. As the ‘local expert’, you are best placed to provide these recommendations. Make life easy for your guests to explore the area with a well compiled interactive map. You are providing your guests with a very effective online concierge service.
An interactive map can help visitors plan their holiday in advance. It can help them decide on what where they would like to go, find & book the best places to eat out and go out to have a drink. You can also map out your local recommendations, any special offers & exclusive discounts that your guests can take advantage of.
The Advantages of an Interactive Map:
- Makes it extremely easy for your visitors to explore your area
- Showcase your local recommendations & exclusive guest offers
- Personalise your own map & content for your guests
- Set up your own local categories & search filters (ease of use)
- Easy to incorporate within your website
- Share your map guide in all guest correspondence & social media
- Increases visitor interaction, trust & confidence in booking with you
How to Add Your Own Interactive Map
Interactive maps can be easily added to your website or sent out to guests in customer correspondence. There are a number of cost effective options available to choose from. These include creating your own via ‘Google My Maps’ or having your own design and bespoke interactive map.
Google My Maps
The simplest way to create an interactive map is via ‘Google My Maps’. Name your own map and add your own description. You can create up to 10 different ‘categories’ or ‘layers’ with multiple listings in each. These categories could include: Where to East & Drink, Local Activities, Places of Interest, Best Beaches, Picnic Spots, Family Attractions, Local Takeaways, etc.
Each listing can have its own style and coloured map marker. You can add several editable fields including, Listing name, Description, Category, Image(s), Website, Address, etc. It is a well known map’ and gives easy directions which can be viewed on mobile devices.
‘Google My Maps’ is very cost effective, easy to use, simple interactive map style and design. The main downside is that you do not have complete control over the displayed content, limited customisation, style and formatting. Individual listings can only be added to only one category. For instance, if you offer watersports, multi activities, a café or restaurant you will have to choose which category it will be be listed under.
Example Google Interactive Map – Cotswold Water Park Visitor Guide
Own Design & Bespoke Interactive Map
Having a bespoke design interactive map will mean you can add your own branding and personalisation. Have your own style base image map / vector map or Google Maps as the background. You can determine how the map looks and feel which gives you complete control of all the content that is presented. (Google maps may well show competitor listings and duplicates). Add special offers, guest discount codes, recommended and branded content to increase engagement and interest.
Example Custom Map Design – Explore the Cotswold Water Park
Present your listings and categories exactly as you would like them to be. For visitor ease of use it is great to have a listing search or filter function e.g. search for ‘paddleboarding’ or ‘horse riding’.
Several owners use their maps to promote local businesses and offers. These listings can appear at the top of the map. Set your listings as ‘paid for’ or premium listings, for example.
Having your own custom interactive maps can look very professional and become a valuable resource for your guests and local visitors to the area. Custom maps generally cost more to produce. This is because they will require a plugin licence (for WordPress websites) or an additional user licence. Your web designer will be able to help you with advice on best options for you.
Here are a few ideas: Best Mapping Plugins for WordPress.
Adding a map to your website will help make your website more engaging and help guests explore your area with ease. It will bring your holiday location to life with your own recommendations, best local attractions and fun activities. It will give your business increased credibility and visitors confidence, confirming you as a ‘Local Expert’.
Once set up, it is very easy to update, add new content and keep it fresh with the latest information.