Posts

Showing posts with the label create link

Free resource to help retailers, restaurants & small businesses closed due to SaH/SiP

During this challenging time for small businesses, this free online resource may help some small businesses amidst the current Stay-at-Home/Shelter-in-Place orders.

For retailers, restaurants and other small businesses that have had to close due to SaH/SiP orders, delivery of their goods directly to customers is an option many are doing or considering to help them get through this.  But a pain-point can be that communicating to customers exactly where they can deliver can be cumbersome or costly, and small business owners don’t have time right now to deal with this.

Easily let customers know where you can deliver!

To that end, I have a well-established tool that many small businesses are using for this purpose.  The tool enables a business to easily show a custom-defined map depicting a delivery/service area based on a list of ZIP CodesCustom Territories using ZIP Codes on Google Maps.

Here’s an example of one of the small businesses using my tool (I have no affiliation with this business, it’s just an example).  On their website, they show their delivery area:

Example of ZIP Codes based delivery area
In this example, this small business simply created a “Launch Map” button that is a link to my Custom Territories using ZIP Codes tool.  The button is simply a link that includes a list of ZIP Codes and a map title like this

Interactive Zip Code based delivery area exampleNote this retailer decided to include a map on their website, but that is not required…it can be as simple as a small link pointing to a ZIP Code list as shown above.  When the customer clicks the link or button, they get an interactive, zoomable, searchable Google Map like this (click the image to see the interactive Google map):

Without this free resource, the ability to create a ZIP Code based delivery area map can be very cumbersome or costly.  This tool makes it super easy (and free!).

Tool just updated:  Now it's easier than ever to create your custom delivery area map based on ZIP Codes by using this simple form found here:

Custom Delivery Areas on Google Maps 



A lot of people seem to do a Google search for 'Create territory map with ZIP Codes free'.  This is how to do just that!  To zoom to one or multiple ZIP Codes, and optionally show their boundary (e.g. for a service territory, sales territory or delivery area), see instructions here:

Custom Territories using ZIP Codes on Google Maps

By the way, if you or someone you know wants to use this, just do so...no need to ask permission or anything first!  But of course, if you need help, feel free to use the contact form on the lower left side of this website.

During this challenging time, if this free tool helps even one small business maintain customers and keep their business going, my effort to create and maintain this free resource will have been more than worth it.


Create a link to a map of ANY Section, Township and Range, including your CURRENT location

If you have a website that makes use of legal land descriptions, now you can quickly create a link to a map centered on any Section, Township and Range.  Or if you are traveling looking at large land parcels, you can see what Township, Range and Section you are currently* in.

This is an advanced capability of the Section Township Range on Google Maps tool.

To zoom into a particular Section, Township and Range, create a link such as this:

https://www.randymajors.com/p/township-range-on-google-maps.html?state=CO&s=15&t=4&td=N&r=69&rd=W

Clicking this link takes you to this map:

Map of Section 15, Township 4 North, Range 69 West, Colorado

TIP: copy/paste the link above and customize to suit your needs

The parameters you can use are as follows:
      • state - REQUIRED FIELD.  Expects a two character state abbreviation, such as ?state=CO
      • s - Optionally include a particular section number, such as &s=15 (if not included, the map will center on the entire township and range) 
      • t - REQUIRED FIELD.  This is the Township number, such as &t=4 
      • td - REQUIRED FIELD.  This is the Township direction indicator and must be N, S, E or W, such as &td=N
      • r - REQUIRED FIELD.  This is the Range number, such as &r=69 
      • rd - REQUIRED FIELD.  This is the Range direction indicator and must be E, W, N or S, such as &rd=W
      • color - optionally choose the color used for the Map Title. Expects a 6-character hex color code without the leading # character, for example, &color=00FF00 would create a green map title (free tools are widely available on the internet to find your hex color)
      • title - optionally creates a title for the map, such as &title=Sec+15+T4N+R69W+CO

      To zoom to your PRESENT* Section, Township and Range, create a link such as this:

      https://www.randymajors.com/p/township-range-on-google-maps.html?loc=true&color=00EE00&title=My+Current+Township+Range+Section

      The parameters you can use are as follows:
          • loc - REQUIRED FIELD.  Expects to be set to true in order to use your current location, such as ?loc=true
          • color - optionally choose the color used for the Map Title. Expects a 6-character hex color code without the leading # character, for example, &color=00FF00 would create a green map title (free tools are widely available on the internet to find your hex color)
          • title - optionally creates a title for the map, such as &title=My+Current+Township+Range+Section

          A few important things to make this work:

          1.  You must use the question mark ( ? ) right after .html, as shown above
          2.  Do NOT use spaces anywhere in the URL or query parameters
          3.  You must separate query parameters using the ampersand ( & ), as shown above
          4.  User the + character to represent spaces in the title parameter

          TIP:  For simplicity, you can drop the https://www from the front

          Your current location is typically more accurate on smartphones and other devices containing a GPS; desktop browsers typically show an approximate location.


          Happy mapping!

          So...what is randymajors.com Research Hub anyway?

          "So what is your website all about?"  I increasingly get asked some form of this question about randymajors.com Research Hub.

          A BRIEF BACKSTORY:  Back in 2006-2010, the randymajors.com website was a fairly small collection of blog posts about family history plus some of my photography.  Then, in 2011 I launched the AncestorSearch on Google Search and Historical U.S. Counties on Google Maps tools primarily aimed at genealogy and historical research.

          FAST FORWARD TO 2018:  I decided to broaden the appeal of the mapping and search tools to a more general audience by launching the present-day County Lines on Google Maps tool.  I continued to get more traction with that tool and added more global coverage.  Then I released ZIP Codes on Google Maps.  Of course, I continue to write genealogy how-to/tips articles as well, and enhance the genealogy tools.

          Finally, in 2019, I opened the floodgates and launched a whole slew of mapping and search tools including:
          In 2019, I also launched the ability to:

          GIVEN ALL THIS, WHAT IS THE COMMON THREAD RUNNING THOUGH THE randymajors.com WEBSITE?

          In a word:  RESEARCH

          randymajors.com Research Hub

          Hence the name randymajors.com Research Hub  


          I created an About randymajors.com Research Hub page to attempt to state my mission and answer the questions I receive most often.  A few excerpts from that page:

          The goal of this website is to make research easier by providing effortless access to publicly available data through familiar, straightforward tools.

          The map tools are built on Google Maps and the search tools use Google Search.  Why?
          They're the world's most popular mapping app and search engine, and so very familiar to nearly everyone.

          Why not use Google Maps itself rather than the map tools on this website?  There are many topics not covered by Google Maps that lots of people would like to see included.  This website aims to fill many of those gaps, such as...

          If the data used by the tools on this website is publicly available elsewhere, why use the tools on this website?  In a word, simplicity.  It shouldn't be so cumbersome to see the map you want and the answers you're looking for.  The tools on this website are built so you can get the answers you're looking for with as few clicks and steps as possible.  In most cases, literally one or two clicks.

          No downloads, no installation, no importing/exporting required.  Just go to the tool you want to use based on your topic of interest (e.g. county lines, city limits, ZIP Codes), and either type a place you're interested in or zoom on the map, and you have your answer.
          A special note to all of my long-time users doing genealogy, ancestry and historical research:  NO WORRIES. THIS RESEARCH FOCUS IS VERY MUCH INTENDED TO INCLUDE A FOCUS ON YOU!

          Thanks for your supportive comments and excellent suggestions over the years.  And thank you for sharing the tools with your friends, colleagues and family!



          Check out the new Custom Maps on Google Maps tool

          The new Custom Maps on Google Maps makes it easy to create your own custom Google Map using any combination of ZIP Codes, counties, cities and more!

          You can use this tool to quickly create:

          • sales territory maps
          • delivery area maps
          • service area maps

          ...all on Google Maps!

          If your territory is composed of dozens of ZIP Codes, you can choose to 'merge' them to show an overall territory boundary.  Then, add your own title to the map, and even choose colors.

          An example link you create looks like this:

          https://www.randymajors.com/p/customgmap.html?zips=10023,10024,10025,10026&zipboundary=show&title=My+Service+Territory

          The resulting map would look something like this:


          Be sure and read the full instructions starting at "How do you create your own sales territory, delivery area, or service area map based on ZIP Codes?

          Some websites that make use of this custom map functionality


          Create a custom County Lines map or ZIP Code-based Sales/Service/Delivery Area map on the fly -- overlaid on Google Maps

          I've had requests from several people to add the capability to create links on their website that would open up the County Lines on Google Maps tool already focused on their region of interest.

          Several have also wondered if there is a way to create a ZIP Code-based Sales/Service/Delivery Area map on the fly.

          Now you can!  Here's how it works:

          Create a map zoomed to a State and show County Name labels

          To simply zoom to a state and optionally show county name labels and a map title, create a link such as this:

          https://www.randymajors.com/p/countygmap.html?state=CT&labels=show
          TIP: copy/paste the links below and customize to suit your needs

          The parameters you can use are as follows:
          • state - expects a 2-character state code as used by the USPS, for example, ?state=CT
          • onestate - optionally shows ONLY the counties in the state specified by the state parameter by using the word show, as in, &onestate=show (in other words, this will hide the county boundaries that are outside of your state of interest)
          • title - optionally give your map a title (use the + character to represent spaces), for example, &title=Connecticut+Counties
          • labels - optionally shows county labels by using the word show, as in, &labels=show
          • color - optionally choose the color used for the Map Title, expects a 6-character hex color code without the leading # character, for example, &color=00FF00 would create a green map title (free tools are widely available on the internet to find your hex color)

          Create a map zoomed to a ZIP Code-based Delivery Area/Service Area/Sales Territory and add Title, Colors etc

          Tool just updated:  Now it's easier than ever to create your custom delivery area map based on ZIP Codes by using this simple form found here:

          Custom Delivery Areas on Google Maps 



          A lot of people seem to do a Google search for 'Create territory map with ZIP Codes free'.  This is how to do just that!  To zoom to one or multiple ZIP Codes, and show the overall boundary (e.g. for a service area, sales territory or delivery area), see instructions here:

          Custom Territories using ZIP Codes on Google Maps

          Maps created from the above two examples

          The first example links you to a County Lines map centered on Connecticut, showing you the county lines and labeling the names of the counties on the map:
          Google Maps with County Boundaries example from Connecticut including county name labels


          The second example creates a Service Territory Map based on a list of ZIP Codes (10023,10024,10025,10026) and creates a title for the map:
          Create a custom County Lines map or ZIP Code-based Sales/Service/Delivery Territory map on the fly, overlaid on Google Maps


          A few important things to make this work:

          1.  You must use the question mark ( ? ) right after .html, as shown above and below
          2.  Do NOT use spaces anywhere in the URL or query parameters
          3.  You must separate query parameters using the ampersand ( & ), as shown above and below
          4.  User the + character to represent spaces in the title parameter

          TIP:  For simplicity, you can drop the https://www from the front and just create the link as:

          With this functionality, you can feel free to create links on your own website that open a window to the Custom Google Maps Tool, zoomed into your area of interest and showing a ZIP Code based sales territory, service territory or delivery area!

          Some websites that make use of this custom map functionality


          Feel free to share this with others who may find this functionality useful!


          NOTE:  The above article relates to PRESENT-day County Lines.  Here are the instructions for linking to HISTORICAL County Lines.



          How to link to an HISTORICAL County Lines map for any Year and Geographic Area of Interest -- overlaid on Google Maps

          NOTE:  This article relates to HISTORICAL County Lines.  Here are the instructions for linking to PRESENT-day County Lines.

          If you have a website or blog and want to create a link to an HISTORICAL county lines map for ANY YEAR and ANY US STATE,  this article is for you!

          Using the instructions below, you can create a link to Historical U.S. Counties on Google Maps for any historical year already zoomed into a particular State, and optionally display the labels showing the county names as of that historical year.

          Here's how it works:   

          To create a map zoomed into a state for a given year, create a link such as this:
          https://www.randymajors.com/p/maps.html?state=CT&year=1788

          To create a map zoomed into a state for a given year, and show county name labels, create a link such as this:
          https://www.randymajors.com/p/maps.html?state=OR&year=1865&labels=show
            TIP: copy/paste the above links and customize to suit your needs

            To explain the above example links, there are three words (called "query parameters") you can use to create a link.  Note, they must be specified in the order shown. 
            • state - expects a 2-character state code as used by the USPS, for example, ?state=CT
            • year - expects a 4-digit historical year, from 1629 through 2000, for example, ?year=1788
            • labels - optionally shows county labels by using the word show, for example, &labels=show

            Here are the maps produced by the two examples above

            The first example links you to an Historical U.S. County Lines map centered on Connecticut, showing you the county boundaries as of 1788:
            Historical U.S. Counties on Google Maps example from 1788 Connecticut

            The second example links you to an Historical U.S. County Lines map centered on Oregon, showing you the county lines as of 1865 and labeling the names of the counties on the map:
            Historical U.S. Counties on Google Maps example from 1865 Oregon with county name labels

            A few important things to make this work:

            1.  You must use the question mark ( ? ) right after .html, as shown above and below
            2.  You must separate query parameters using the ampersand ( & ), as shown above and below
            3.  You must specify the query parameters in order: state, year and optionally labels

            TIP:  For simplicity, you can drop the https://www from the front and just create the link as:


            With this functionality, you can feel free to create links on your own website that open a window to the Historical U.S. Counties on Google Maps tool, already zoomed into your area of interest and showing county boundaries as of the year you're interest in!

            Share this with others who may find this functionality useful!