How to handle Google Maps

Written By Wolfgang Geiger

WordPress developer in Hong Kong specializing in making websites work in Mainland China. More information on the About Me page

Google Maps are blocked in China, so if you embed a map on your website, the website won’t load or will only load very slowly.

There two fairly straigh forward solutions:

Link map as image

The first solution is to make a screenshot of your current map and link it to Google Maps. This might look something like this:

StarFerry on Google Maps

Based on Google’s guidelines, this solution would be a bit of a grey zone, so if in doubt, consult your lawyer. Google explicitly allows links to Google Maps from text or buttons, a screenshot of the map might fall under fair use or not – hard to say.

If you want to play it save, get a custom map image done on Fiverr or by your designer and link that to Google Maps, might add some flair to the website as well.

Use Bing or Baidu

Another alternative would be to use Bing Maps or Baidu Maps.

Bing, like most Microsoft products, works perfectly fine in Mainland China. Problem is, that Bing Maps sometimes isn’t 100% accurate, but depending on your use case, it might be good enough.

If your website is targeted at Mainland China, Baidu might be the best solution to go with. If you do also have an audience outside of China, then Bing would be the way to go.

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