Tutorials, News & Customer Case Studies

The Value of MapifyPro

by Josh Sears on March 21st, 2019 under Uncategorized

You may have noticed that late last year we switched to a monthly pricing model for the MapifyPro store locator for WordPress. After doing so, we understandably received questions on why we decided to do so. After all, many customers are accustomed to plugins sold on marketplaces like CodeCanyon, where plugins are typically sold for a one-off cost as low as $5.

The short answer to this is that MapifyPro outgrew that model quite some time ago. Though there are some great plugins on CodeCanyon (we even have a few up there), for the most part it boils down to the fact that it is essentially filled with buggy, unmaintained, and simplified plugins that don’t hold a candle to the capabilities of MapifyPro.

MapifyPro, the software itself, has cost over $25,000 to develop, and that doesn’t even consider the Shopify version. That means if you wanted to hire a development team to build the exact same map plugin for WordPress, then you’d have to invest at least that amount, and that doesn’t count for the prototyping and design, which I took care of myself. At $19 per month, it would take you over 1300 months (109 years) to reach that cost.

In truth, we’ve priced our new model to be one of the most reasonable investments you can find when comparing to competitors. Of course each software bears distinctions, but for the most part the features are similar across the board and, if we’re being honest, none have as many features as MapifyPro, and all of them lock away features behind higher tier pay walls. Let’s have a look at a few competitors:

Storemapper: $19/month for the cheapest plan, which is very limiting in locations, AND site traffic. That’s a lot to monitor, and to unlock it you’ll be paying $59 a month. With Mapifypro we don’t mess with limitations: you simply get unlimited functionality for one low price.

StorePoint.Co: StorePoint bumps up to $25 for the minimum usage, and unlocks the full features at $69/month, and these are their sale prices.

StoreLocatorWidgets: Also similar to the previous 2 examples, with the very basic and limiting plan at $19/month, and full access at a blistering $199 per month!

With some Googling, you’ll see that this is a common model, and also see that MapifyPro is actually one of the most feature-rich solutions out there, with zero limitations, and more features than the competition. Even more important, it allows us to engage with customers more, add requested features, and provide the ultimate support scenario with our new team of support agents, who we are actively interviewing at the time of publishing this article.

For these reasons, and those shared by current customers, we hope you see the value and how MapifyPro is the best store locator plugin for WordPress.

Filed under: Uncategorized

The Best Alternative to Google Maps

by Josh Sears on March 18th, 2019 under Updates

In our previous post, which we admit was FAR too long ago, we discussed how Google is charging everyone for use of Google Maps. They still are of course, and we’ve seen the results from their customers as they scramble to find an alternative for their store locators and other mapping plugins for WordPress, Shopify, etc.

Little did we know back in 2016 when we revamped MapifyPro that it would be a blessing in disguise. Being forced to rebuild or software from scratch with a strict timeline from Google…Well, let’s just say it was bit stressful. Not only are we an extremely small team, but we had poured 10’s of thousands of dollars in building the original MapifyPro. Google came knocking however, and threatened legal action if we didn’t sign up for their paid plan, which would amount to a minimum of $10k a month! Hard pass on that.

What we didn’t know is how great an alternative we would eventually build. MapifyPro, now built upon an open source API, is easily the most powerful alternative to Google Maps, and we’re not afraid to brag about it. Since 2016, we’ve added new features that we couldn’t have implemented using Google Maps, and we continue to uncover new tricks and features that will be rolled out in future releases. We’re also extremely proud to mention that we’ve surpassed the 10,000 customers mark, and customers continue to use and love the new MapifyPro just as much as ever, as indicated by our ever-growing reviews section 🙂

Stay tuned as new updates are coming for MapifyPro, including a couple of the most-requested features yet.

Filed under: Updates

Yep, Google Maps Really is Charging Everyone.

by Josh Sears on May 08th, 2018 under Uncategorized

Starting June 11th of 2018, Google is now charging every single user of the Google Maps API. This means anyone using Google Maps, whether straight up or integrated in a plugin, will now face being charged, regardless if they are a commercial entity, hobbyist, or non-profit. Check out the details here.

Back in 2016, Google started requiring the use of a Google Browser Key, which was essentially a tracking code that let them monitor how many users viewed your maps on a minute to minute basis. MapifyPro customers may remember this from previous versions of our own software. If you didn’t create your code. Google Maps (and all plugins built upon the platform) simply didn’t work.

It’s clear now that they had a master plan. Google loves to spin their cash-grabs as beneficial to their customers (“This new plan gives you more flexibility and control over how you use our APIs” ….No, they don’t actually.), but this is plainly that: A cash grab. Now, they have every right to charge for their products, and they offer a somewhat generous buffer before the pay wall hits, but it’s also very predatory in how they’ve rolled it out. They’ve essentially conditioned their users—many whom will not realize they may eventually be charged—into implementing and relying on their platform before hitting them with this new payment requirement. No grandfathering in on this one: you either pay, or you remove Google Maps from your site. Even if you fall into the “free zone” you’ll still need to monitor and hope your traffic doesn’t hit their numbers that require a charge. Hoping for lower traffic on your site anyone? Didn’t think so.

Our team at MapifyPro foresaw this back in 2016, and knew it was time to move our software to a new platform. MapifyPro no longer uses Google Maps as a foundation, and hasn’t since last year. While it was a scary (and expensive) move for us in the beginning, we’ve found that the new system not only ditches the creepy “big brother” surveillance from Google, but it’s also simply better in every way. It’s just as powerful, allows for more features, ditches Google branding and legal restrictions, and of course contains no monitoring. It just works, and it always will.

We’ve had multiple, direct discussions with Google and the path they were taking, and we’ve discovered that numerous plugins are using their platform (the Google Maps API) illegally per changes made in 2016. It is understandable however because Google releases updates to their terms of use as they see fit, and they contain game-changers, just like this new update, that suddenly mention previously nonexistent charges. Developers can’t keep up, and suddenly find themselves facing legal issues with the Google giants, who promptly tell them to pay up or shut down. On top of it, they give them 30 days to do so, lest face legal action. Again, we get it: We shouldn’t expect to be spoiled into thinking we should have everything at no cost, but this is a pretty shady “gotcha” tactic, coupled with straight-out bullying. Not the type of companies we want to work with.

But that is a thing of the past with MapifyPro, and we’ve made some serious lemonade out of those lemons. Better maps, just as powerful, and not a single entity tapping your shoulder asking for more cash. We’re the first plugin to move away from the giants that are Google Maps, but certainly not the last. Be sure to check out our demos to see for yourself.

Filed under: Uncategorized

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