Over the last week or so I’ve noticed a few sites suffering from the Google map issue. This is where the map is displayed however it has an overlay to darken the map and the words “For development purposes only” showing across the map as a watermark. It also places a pop up message saying “This page can’t load Google Maps correctly.”.
At first glance this looks like quite a problem however the solution is fairly straight forward. You see, it’s all down to how Google license their Map API and about a year ago or so they changed the rules to say that all users had to be registered with a billing account (even though 99% of users will never need to pay).
That was all well and good however overnight millions of small websites, personal projects etc were all suddenly non-compliant and many have either failed to realise or don’t have a clue how to fix it. Google themselves provide the solution in the “Do you own this website?” link on the error message but it appears many, many owners haven’t clicked it or still don’t understand it.
The solution (in a nutshell) is to create yourself a google developers account, add in the Google Maps API and set up the billing. Then change the code within your site to include the API key. It’s a fairly straight forward process however we need to understand that many small business website owners do not have the basic understanding of their site to muck around under the hood. Many sites were sold to them years ago, put online and that’s how they’ve stayed until now.
If you’re one of those owners and aren’t confident in changing this then give us a shout, we’ll do it for you and literally charge you pennies for it. In some cases you can even just use our API key as the number of hits you’re going to get is never going to trouble the billing account.
Don’t sit there with a map that’s looking wrong and makes your site look like you don’t take care over it. Get it fixed once and for all.
We’re here to help