Ready to make some custom maps for your website or blog? Here are a few tutorials and samples to get you going!

Adding locations to the map

Adding locations in MapQuest Map Builder beta is simple.  Here are the different ways to add locations:

  1. Drop pins directly on the map: Right-click (or alternate click) on the map and Map Builder will drop a pin on the exact location, which will be added to “your locations” under the map.  There, you can give each location  a custom name, custom title and change the pin design.
  2. Enter an address in the search box: On the left side of Map Builder, type the address in the search box and the click search button.  MapQuest will show you the location under the search box and on the map.  To add it to your custom map, click the ‘add’ button in the left pane.
  3. Look up or search for a business or place in the search box: With Map Builder, you can look up an individual place (for example, “Stubb’s BBQ, Austin, TX”) or search for businesses (for example, “pizza, Chicago, IL”) and add the locations you want on your map.
  4. Enter latitude and longitude coordinates: Enter decimal latitude and longitude coordinates (for example, “44.4606018066, -110.82800293″) and add the location from the left pane to your map.

Choosing Map Pins and Linking to Custom Map Pins

Each pin on your map can be customized.  MapQuest provides an assortment of pins and icons for you to choose or you can link to an image hosted on your site.

Map Builder Icons

To change the pin design, click the “Change Me” icon for the desired location in the list under your map.  Highlight the preferred pin design and click “Select” to set that design as your map pin.  Clicking “Use For All” sets all of your map pins to the selected design and will automatically be the pin design for locations you add in the future.

To use your own image, click the “Import an Icon” link under the pin gallery.  Enter the URL of the image you’d like as your map pin.  (Remember, always respect copyrights and do not use images that you do not have permission to use!)  Click “Select” and then set the anchor point for your custom image.  It will ask if you would like to add a shadow to the pin.  Once you are happy with your preview, click “Save” and your custom image will appear on the map.  If your custom image is larger than 32-pixels-by-32-pixels, it will be resized down accordingly.  Custom images you use will show up in your gallery so you can reuse them later!

Drawing Lines and Shapes on the Map

To draw shapes on the map, click on one of the drawing tools in the toolbar located in the top left corner of the map.  Here’s a quick look at each tool in that toolbar:

  • Hand tool - This tool is activated by default and allows you to click and drag the map around and double-click the mouse to zoom in on the map.
  • Rectangle tool – To draw rectangular shapes, click this tool then click on the map to set one corner of your shape.  As you move your mouse, you will see the shape preview.  Click again to complete your rectangle.  Once you have your rectangle, you can click any corner and drag to adjust your shape.
  • Ellipse tool – To draw ellipse and circular shapes, similar to the rectangle tool, click to start drawing your shape and click again to end.  You will see the preview of the shape as you move your mouse.  Once you have created your shape, you may adjust it be clicking on the square corner indicators and dragging them to new positions on the map.
  • Custom polygon tool- More custom shapes are available here.  Activate this tool by clicking the mouse, then start drawing on the map.  Each consecutive click will drop a new anchor point for the shape.  You can see the shape preview as you add each point.  To finish the shape, either double-click the mouse or click on one of the already created anchor points.Drawing Sample
  • Line tool – Easily draw lines by clicking the map to drop individual points that will form a continuous line.  To complete a line, double-click the mouse or click on one of the already created anchor points.

For each shape you create, the shape will be listed under the map alongside your other points and created objects. You can set a custom title and description for each as well.  To change the fill color, opacity, border color or border width for a shape, click “Change Me” icon for the shape you want to change.

Saving, Editing and Embedding Custom Maps

Once you complete your map, click “Save.”  Though it’s not required, we recommend you create a MapQuest Map Builder login to save your maps to your own gallery where you can come back and retrieve or edit them later.  When you save, you will be able to see the embed code; copy and paste into your website or blog to add your custom interactive map.

Map Builder for WordPress

All the functionality of MapQuest Map Builder is also available as a WordPress Plugin.

MapQuest Map Builder Samples: