About this Calculator
Common APIs which are required when integrating a mapping service with your website are as follows:
- Map Images. These are usually composed of square tiles which fit together to make up the visible map and can be displayed in a range of different zoom levels.
- Place Suggestions. This feature provides suggested matches as you type an address into the address search field in the map.
- Geocoding. When using the 'My Location' button to find your position on the map, the reverse geocoding feature is needed to translate your device's coordinates (GPS or otherwise) into an address.
- Directions. Used to display routing and text directions to get from point A to point B on the map.
The use of any one of these features by your customers has a cost associated with it which means that not only does the cost of using the mapping service depend on how many users visit it each day, it also depends on the activity profile of each of these users on each visit to your web page.
For example, if they mostly just view the map without any interaction then there will be less requirement to make place suggestions and update the view of the map. Conversely, if they search for many different locations on each visit that will mean that more requests are made to the mapping provider for the services listed above.
This makes it very difficult to make an accurate assessment of how much the mapping service will cost as it depends on the real world actions of your actual map users which can vary considerably depending on what they are using your map for. What we've done above is provided a way to switch between the level of activity that the user has on your map by adjusting the number of address or location searches that take place on average per user. We recommend switching between the options to get a better idea of the potential impact on your costs, particularly if you are considering Google Maps which charges more than twice as much for Place queries vs Map loads ($17 per 1,000 instead of $7 per 1,000).
How we calculated the numbers
Each service provider costs a different amount and has a differet free quota and this is set out below:
- ExpressMaps. We include 100,000 map loads per month in our free quota. A credit card is not required to sign up for a key. We don't charge more for Place Suggestions as this is currently not provided by our service.
- Google Maps. Google will give $200 worth of free Google Maps Platform credit each month to anyone who signs up for an API key. You are also required to provide your credit card information at the time of signing up for the API key so that if you exceed your free quota your service will continue however you will be charged a fee for any usage in excess of the free quota. Each type of activity (map loads, places suggestions, geocoding etc) costs a different amount and counts towards this free quota amount.
- Mapbox. Mapbox give 50,000 map loads per month in return for signing up for a free API key. A credit card is not required to sign up for a key. Mapbox also includes 50,000 geocoding requests per month as part of their free quota.