Tag - Google

How to Add Google Maps Store Locator in WordPress


Do you want to add Google Maps store locator in WordPress? A store locator is a map pointing to your business location.

It allows users to locate you on the map, find driving directions, or share the location with friends. Adding a store locator to your business website or even an online store helps you instantly earn user trust.

In this article, we will show you how to easily add Google Maps store locator in WordPress.

How to add a Google Maps store locator in WordPress

Google Maps introduced a paid API to display maps on websites. They still offer a limited free option to embed Google maps on small websites.

Most Google Maps plugins for WordPress use the Google API to retrieve and display maps. If you want to use a Google Maps plugin, then you will need to sign up with Google API platform and enable billing option.

It is a pay as you go service, which means you will be charged based on the number of API calls made from your website.

We will show you both free and paid methods with their pros and cons, then you can choose the one that best suits your needs.

Method 1. Adding Google Maps to Your Website for Free

This method is easier and free. The disadvantage is that you cannot show multiple stores on a single map.

It is recommended for users who just want to add a single Google Maps store location on their website.

First, you need to visit the Google Maps website on your computer. Next, enter your store’s address in the search field and Google Maps will show it on the map with a pinned marker on the map.

Sharing a map in Google Maps

Make sure that the marker is placed on the correct location. You can select a zoom level by clicking the zoom button. Once you are satisfied with the zoom level, you need to click on the share button from the left column.

This will bring up a popup where you need to switch to the ‘Embed a Map’ tab. You will now see your searched location on the map with an HTML code.

Copy the Google Maps embed code

Click on the Copy HTML link to get the embed code.

Now head over to the admin area of your WordPress website. Once in the admin area, go ahead and edit the post or page where you want to display the store location map.

Normally, users add a store location map on their contact form page with their phone number and opening hours.

On the post edit screen, you need to add a custom HTML block.

Adding a custom HTML block in WordPress

In the text area of custom HTML block, you need to paste the code you copied from Google Maps.

Maps embed code in WordPress

You can now switch to the preview tab to see Google Maps embedded into your page. It will show your store location marked on the map with links to directions or to save the location.

Store location marked on the map

Method 2. Add Google Maps Store Locator Using a WordPress Plugin

This method is recommended for users who want to show multiple store locations on a Google Map.

The first thing you need to do is in install and activate the WP Store Locator plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

It is a free Google Maps plugin that allows you to create a custom map with multiple store locations and custom fields.

The disadvantage of this method is that it requires you to add an API key. You will need to provide your billing information to use the API key. For pricing and other information, please check out the Google Maps Platform website.

Ready, let’s get started.

Step 1. Generating Google Maps API keys

To use WP Store Locator plugin, you will need to generate two API keys. The first one is called the Browser API key and the second one is called the Server Key.

Let’s start with the Browser key first. Click on this Google Developer Console link and it will take you to the Google API website with all the required APIs enabled.

Create a new project

You need to create a new project and give it a name that helps you identify the project. After that, you will have to wait a few moments as the console creates the project for you.

Next, you will be redirected to the API key configuration page. You need to provide a title for your API key, so you can easily identify it as the browser api key for your Google Maps project.

Browser api key settings

Next, you need to set ‘Application Restrictions’ to ‘HTTP Referrers’. Below that you need to set the ‘Accept requests from’ field to your domain name in the following format.

https://example.com/*
https://*.example.com/* (if you are using a subdomain)

Finally, click on the ‘Create’ button. The console will now save your settings and will show you the Browser key. You need to copy and paste this key in a text editor, you will need it later.

Copy browser api key

Next, you need to create the server API key. Click on this Google Developer Console link and it will take you directly to the console with selected APIs enabled.

You will once again see the create project page. However since you have already created a project, you can just click on the drop-down menu and select your project.

Select your Google Maps project

You will be then redirected to API configuration page. Provide a name for this API key that helps you recognize it as Server key.

Set IP restrictions

Under the ‘Application restrictions’ section, you need to select IP Addresses. Basically, we are telling Google to only accept server requests coming from specific IP addresses.

Now you would need to ask your WordPress hosting provider to tell you the IP range used by your hosting account. It would be in the following format:

172.16.0.0/12

After that, you need to click on the ‘Create’ button to save your settings and copy the Server API key.

Step 2. Setting up the WP Store Locator Plugin

Once you have created your API keys, you need to head over to Store Locator » Settings page to set up the plugin.

Enter Google Maps Keys

Enter the Google Maps browser and server API keys you generated earlier. Next, select Maps language and region and then click on the save changes button to store your settings.

Now, you need to scroll down on the settings page to the ‘Map’ section and enter a start point of the map. This start point could be a city or a country, so users can see markers placed at different locations.

Add a start point for your store locator map

There are many other options on the settings page including map style, default zoom level, map type, search radius, country, etc. You can review them and adjust them to your needs.

Once you are done, it is time to add locations.

Step 3. Adding store locations

Head over to Store Locator » New Store page to add your first location. The New Store page will look just like the default post or page editor in WordPress.

Store address

Provide a title for your store and then scroll down to ‘Store details’ section. From here, you need to enter your store address.

You will see a map in the right column, however it will not automatically update to the address you have entered. You will need to click on the Publish button to save your location. After that, refresh the page and the map will point to the address you provided.

Now repeat the process to add other store locations. You can add as many store locations as you want.

Step 4. Adding the store locator map in WordPress

To display your store locator on a WordPress page, simply create a new page or edit an existing one where you want to display the map.

On the post edit screen, you need to add the ‘Shortcode’ block to your post edit area. After that add the [wpls] shortcode inside it.

Store locator shortcode

You can now save or publish your page and click on the preview button to see Google Maps store locator in action.

Store locator map preview

It will show your map markers for each store location and start the map from your preferred starting point. For example, in this map, it is focused on the city of West Palm Beach and showing two store locations on the map.

That’s all we hope this article helped you learn how to add Google Maps store locator in WordPress. You may also want to see our list of free Google Tools every site owner should use.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Add Google Maps Store Locator in WordPress appeared first on WPBeginner.



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How to Install Google Analytics in WordPress for Beginners


Do you want to install Google Analytics in WordPress? Knowing how your audience interacts with your website is crucial for your success.

The best way to know your audience is through your traffic stats, and this is what Google Analytics provides for FREE.

In this article, we will share why Google Analytics is important, and how you can easily install Google Analytics in your WordPress website (step by step).

How to Install Google Analytics in WordPress

First, we will explain why Google Analytics is important and how it can help you grow your website.

After that, we will show you how to sign up for a Google Analytics account and different methods to install it on your WordPress site.

Finally, we will explain how to view your traffic reports in Google Analytics.

Here is a quick overview of what you’ll learn in this article.

  • Why is Google Analytics Important
  • How to Sign up with Google Analytics
  • How to Install Google Analytics Using MonsterInsights (Recommended)
  • How to Install Google Analytics Using Insert Headers & Footers Plugin
  • How to Install Google Analytics in WordPress Theme (Advanced)
  • Viewing Reports in Google Analytics
  • Making the Most out of Google Analytics
    • Ready let’s get started.

      Why is Google Analytics Important for Bloggers?

      Once you start a blog, your #1 goal is to get more traffic and subscribers. Google Analytics help you make data-driven decisions by showing you the stats that matter. You can see:

      Who visits your website?

      This part of analytics answers what is the geographical location of your audience, which browser did the user use to visit your site and other important information such as screen resolution, JavaScript support, Flash support, language and more.

      This data is extremely useful, and it can help in numerous ways. When getting a custom design, you can use the user data to make sure that your site will be compatible with your audience.

      If most of your users don’t have Flash support, then you should avoid adding the flash element in your site. If most of your users are on 1280 screen resolutions, then make sure that your design is compatible with that resolution or smaller.

      What do people do when they are on your website?

      You can track where the users are going on your website, how long do they stay on your website, and what is the bounce rate (the percent of users exit your site on the first visit).

      By using this information, you can decrease the bounce rate and increase your pageviews.

      You can also find your most popular articles, articles that are not doing so well, and what kind of content your users are looking for.

      When do people visit your website?

      By looking at the hottest hours in the day for your site, you can pick the time when you publish your post. If that time zone is not compatible with yours, then you can schedule your post to meet that hour.

      How do people find your website?

      This section of the analytics shows you where did the users come from (for example: Search Engines, Direct Links, Referral links from another site).

      It also shows you what percentage of your visitors came from each of these sources. Google analytics gives you the breakdown of each of these categories. If it is the search engine category, then it shows you which search engine got you the most traffic, Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.

      The breakdown of referral sources shows you which sites you need to work with the most. If your top referral source is Facebook, then you need to have exclusive Facebook content to make your Facebook audience feel special.

      If your top referral source is an external website, then you might want to consider having a partnership with that website (guest post exchange or something else).

      How do people interact with your content?

      Google analytics shows how your users interact with your site’s content. It shows you what percent of the user clicked on which link on your site and much more.

      You can run A/B split tests by creating content experiments in Google Analytics to understand what works best to meet your goals.

      By seeing the user interactivity, you can work your content around your users. By seeing the answers to the questions above, you can focus on the strategies that work for your site and avoid strategies that don’t work.

      Simply put, eliminate the guesswork and focus on stats that matter, so you can make data driven-decisions.

      How to Signup with Google Analytics

      Google Analytics is available for free and all you need is a Google or Gmail account to sign up. The sign up process is quite simple, follow the step by step instructions below to create your Google Analytics account.

      Step 1: First you need to visit Google Analytics sign up.

      You will be asked to login with your Google account. If you already have a Google or Gmail account, then you can use that to sign-in. Otherwise, you can go ahead and create a Google account for yourself.

      Sign in with your Google account

      Step 2: Once you sign-in with your Gmail account, you will be prompted to a screen like the one below. This is where you will signup for Google analytics with your Gmail account.

      Sign up for Google Analytics

      Step 3: On the next screen, you will be given choice to choose between a website or mobile app. Make sure you select website.

      After that, you need to enter account name (It will be the Google Analytics profile name for this website), Website name, website’s URL, country, and the time zone.

      Fill in your website information

      Once you have entered this information, click on the Get Tracking ID button. You will be presented with Google Analytics terms and service which you must agree to, so click on ‘I Agree’ button.

      Step 4: Now you will be presented with your Google Analytics tracking code. You can copy this tracking code because you will need to enter it in your WordPress site depending on the method you use below.

      Your Google Analytics tracking code

      We suggest leaving the analytics browser tab open as you may need to revisit it, once you have installed the code on your WordPress site.

      Now that you have setup a Google Analytics account, lets take a look at how to install Google Analytics in WordPress.

      How to Install Google Analytics in WordPress

      There are a few different ways to setup Google Analytics in WordPress. We will show you three methods where the first option is the easiest and the last being the hardest.

      You can choose the one that best suits your needs.

      1. Google Analytics for WordPress by MonsterInsights

      MonsterInsights is the most popular Google Analytics plugin for WordPress. Over 1 million websites use it including the likes of Bloomberg, PlayStation, Zillow, and more.

      It is the easiest and by far the best way to add Google Analytics to WordPress (for all users beginners and experts alike).

      MonsterInsights is available as both, a paid premium plugin, and a free version. In this tutorial, we will be using the MonsterInsights free version.

      You can use the MonsterInsights Pro version if you want more advanced features like E-commerce tracking, Ads tracking, Author tracking, etc. The process of setting them up is the same.

      Let’s get started.

      The first thing you need to do is install and activate the MonsterInsights plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

      Upon activation, the plugin will add a new menu item labeled ‘Insights’ to your WordPress admin menu. Clicking on it will bring the MonsterInsights setup wizard.

      MonsterInsights setup wizard

      First, you will be asked to choose a category for your website (a business website, blog, or online store). Select one and then click on ‘Save and Continue’ button.

      Next, you need to click on the ‘Connect MonsterInsights’ button.

      Connect MonsterInsights

      This will bring up a popup which will take you Google accounts where you will be asked to sign in or select a Google account if you are already signed in.

      Sign in or select a Google account to continue

      Next, you will be asked to allow MonsterInsights to access your Google Analytics account.

      Allow MonsterInsights to access your Google Analytics account

      Click on the ‘Allow’ button to continue.

      The final step is to select the profile you want to track. You need to select your website here and then click on the ‘Complete authentication’ button to continue.

      Select your website profile to compete setup

      MonsterInsights will now install Google Analytics on your website. After that you will be asked to select the recommended settings for your website.

      Recommended settings for Google Analytics

      The default settings would work for most websites. If you use an affiliate link plugin, then you need to add the path you use to cloak affiliate links. This will allow you to track your affiliate links in Google Analytics.

      Click on the Save and Continue button to save your settings.

      Next, MonsterInsights will show you paid add-ons that you can access if you upgrade to PRO. You can simply click on the ‘Save and Continue’ button to skip this step.

      Upgrade to pro

      After that, you will be asked to install WPForms plugin, which is the best WordPress contact form plugin. You can install it or simply click on ‘Skip this Step’

      Recommended plugin

      That’s all you have successfully installed and setup Google Analytics on your WordPress site. Remember, it will take Google Analytics sometime before showing your stats.

      Google Analytics successfully installed using MonsterInsights

      The best part about MonsterInsights is that you can view your Google Analytics reports inside your WordPress dashboard. Simply visit Insights &raqo; Reports page to check out a quick overview of your analytics data.

      Your Google Analytics reports in WordPress dashboard

      Note: MonsterInsights was formerly known as Google Analytics for WordPress by Yoast. WPBeginner’s founder, Syed Balkhi, acquired the plugin in 2016 and rebranded it to MonsterInsights. Now it is part of our family of premium WordPress plugins.

      2. Insert Headers and Footers Plugin

      This method is not as not as good as MonsterInsights because you will not be able to do advanced tracking configuration, and you will not be able to view Google Analytics data in your WordPress dashboard.

      First, you need to install and activate the Insert Headers and Footers plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

      Upon activation, you need to visit Settings » Insert Headers and Footers page. Here you need to paste the Google Analytics code that you copied in step 4 into the headers section.

      Adding Google Analytics tracking code using Insert Headers and Footers plugin

      Don’t forget to click on the save changes button to store your settings.

      That’s all, you have successfully installed Google Analytics on your site.

      3. Install Google Analytics in WordPress Theme

      This method is for advanced users who are familiar with the code. It is somewhat unreliable because your code will disappear if you switch or update the theme. We almost never recommend using this method.

      If this is your first time adding code to your WordPress files, then you should check out our guide on how to copy paste code snippets in WordPress.

      Add code in header.php file

      Simply edit the header.php file in your WordPress theme and paste the code you copied in step 4 right after the <body> tag.

      Don’t forget to save your changes and upload the file back to your server.

      Add via Functions File

      You can also add Google Analytics tracking code to WordPress functions file. It will then automatically add the tracking code to every page on your WordPress site.

      You will need to add this code to your theme’s functions.php file.

      <?php
      add_action('wp_head', 'wpb_add_googleanalytics');
      function wpb_add_googleanalytics()  ?>
      
      // Paste your Google Analytics code from Step 4 here
      
      <?php  ?>
      

      Viewing Reports on Google Analytics Website

      Google Analytics is capable of showing you a treasure of data collected from your stats. You can view this data by visiting your Google Analytics dashboard.

      Google Analytics reporting

      You will see the built-in Google Analytics reports in the left column. Each section is divided into different tabs and clicking on a tab will expand it to show more options.

      • Real-time This report will show you a real time view of your traffic.
      • Audience tab will show reports to help you understand your users.
      • Acquisition reports explore where your users came from.
      • Behavior reports summarize what your users do after they arrive on your site.
      • Conversion reports show how well you’re doing against your goals.

      Making the Most out of Google Analytics

      Google Analytics is an incredibly powerful tool with tons of awesome features. Some of them are quite obvious and easy to use, others require some additional setup.

      Here are some of the resources that will help you make the most out of Google Analytics reports.

      Google Analytics works best with Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools). It allows you to see how your website is doing in search results. See our complete Google Search Console guide to learn how to use it to grow your website.

      We hope this article helped you learn how to install Google Analytics in WordPress. You may also want to see our ultimate WordPress SEO guide for beginners.

      If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

      The post How to Install Google Analytics in WordPress for Beginners appeared first on WPBeginner.



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Form Pages by WPForms – Google Forms Alternative for WordPress


Have you ever tried creating a distraction-free form landing page in WordPress? If so, then you likely realized that it is not easy.

The biggest challenge with WordPress forms until now has been that all form layouts are controlled by WordPress themes, and sadly most WordPress themes do not prioritize form layouts.

This forced a lot of WordPress users to use Google Forms to create standalone forms which isn’t an ideal workflow. Since there wasn’t a perfect Google Forms alternative in WordPress, we created one.

Today, I’m excited to announce the launch of Form Pages by WPForms, a “distraction-free” form landing page builder for WordPress to help you improve your form conversions.

Form Pages by WPForms Preview

Form Pages addon for WPForms allows you to quickly create dedicated form landing pages without hiring a developer or writing any code in less than 5 minutes.

Like everything else in WPForms, we made the process “stupid simple”.

You can create a custom landing page for any of your WordPress forms by simply enabling the “Form Page Mode” from the Form Settings.

Form Pages by WPForms

On the settings page, you can add your logo, custom page title, description, and define the landing page URL.

It comes with two different form styles Modern and Classic. The Classic style will give you the exact same look-and-feel of Google Forms whereas the Modern Design will allow you to bring your form into 2019.

You can combine the form styles with six pre-made color schemes. You can also build a custom color scheme by selecting the main color. WPForms will then generate other colors and gradients to automatically build your color scheme.

Once done simply save your settings, and that’s it.

Your custom form landing page is ready to be shared.

Form Pages by WPForms is the perfect Google Forms alternative for WordPress because it lets you build custom form landing pages and combine it with other powerful WPForms features such as smart surveys, conditional logic, payment integrations, marketing integrations, user registration, form abandonment technology, and so much more.

Form Pages addon is available as part of the WPForms Pro plan.

If you’re serious about improving your form conversions, then you need get started with WPForms Pro today.

Bonus: You can get 50% off WPForms when using the coupon code: SAVE50

Thank you as always for your continued support of WPBeginner and our products. We look forward to bringing you even more powerful solutions in 2019.

Syed and the WPBeginner Team



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