NanoWhat : How To Make Money From Google Maps

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NanoWhat : How To Make Money From Google Maps

Although many articles talk about how to make money from Google Maps, most of them don’t approach the subject from a local map owner’s perspective!

So, let’s be more specific:

How do Google Local Guides get paid?

As many people know, Google Local Guides is a large community and program created by Google to encourage locals to write reviews, share photos, answer questions, add or edit places, and check facts on Google Maps. 

In case you want to skip the story about Google Local Guides, click this link to jump to the part where you learn how to make money with Google Maps

How many Google Local Guides worldwide?

Last year, Google Maps reached a new milestone: 150 million Google Local Guides worldwide! All the Guides have contributed more than 70% of the reviews, photos and other types of user-generated content you see on Google Maps.

Local Guides added more than 8 million places to Google Maps in 2020. They also updated business attributes on more than 17 million places in Maps during the past year.


Do GLGs (Google Local Guides) get paid by Google for all those contributions?

People estimate that Google Maps makes over $4 billion revenue a year!

But the fact is – Google Local Guides don’t get any direct revenue from Google.

NanoWhat’s done several video interviews with GLGs around the world, trying to understand their motivations for engaging with this program and their inner drive to keep up with the program’s activities and campaigns. 

Most people talk about the hope that their maps, photos and reviews can help others and also support local business.

The second biggest motivation comes from enjoying a sense of accomplishment that comes along with being part of the GLG community and bragging rights earned from completing challenge campaigns. The third is accumulating all the locations they love around a city, and saving the places they yearn to visit on their next trip.

70% of content on Google Maps is uploaded by Google Local Guides


Local Food & Drinks:  Restaurants are one of the top categories that GLGs like to add to maps, which is inseparable from their daily life. Discovering local delicacies, particularly street food, coffee is an ongoing hobby of GLGs.

Parks and Landscapes:  During interviews with GLGs, it was found that whenever they found a beautiful landscape or discovered new trails while trekking outdoors, they would check their map to see if someone marked it. That’s why we can find so many hidden local hiking trails on Google Maps.

Local Hidden Gems: Many GLGs told us that they would save their favorite places for shopping, food, entertainment and transportation for the city where they live. These include hidden gems that many outsiders dream of and are keen to experience like local people.

Google Maps brings together 150 million GLG maps for everyone to search. Due to the sheer volume of places and maps, it’s hard accurately obtain maps and places vetted by real locals. Travellers and explorers are left to judge the authenticity of a location by the word-of-mouth from each location, and skim user reviews and star ratings. Such evaluation is also mixed with a certain amount of advertising and commercial driven agendas.

With the rapid development of the Internet and the gradual recovery of tourism, more and more people try to avoid crowded tourist spots, looking instead for local delicacies, hidden gems and experiences that follow the lifestyle real locals enjoy.

NanoWhat’s community of travelers wants access to Hidden Gems 


Similarly, we conducted video interviews with many travelers from all over the world, and when asked if they would like to buy a GLG’s Map to explore cities, they were unanimously enthusiastic:

  • “Is there really such a map for sale?” :   This was the first reaction from travellers when they heard our question! There is no doubt that Google Maps is the primary tool for everyone to explore the city, but in the face of huge data and information, the difficulty of choosing where to go has become a primary problem that plagues everyone.
  • “I don’t even know what keywords to search for?” :  When going to a completely unfamiliar city, within a limited time, what are the most worthwhile ‘things to do’ locally and what kind of experience to choose? 
  • “How much are you willing to spend on a map” :  All interviewees said if their favorite map is less than $10, they will buy it without hesitation, but if it exceeds $20, they will have reservations.
  • When asked why they are willing to buy GLG’s maps : Everyone’s answers focused on “needing the most authentic local recommendations”, “saving a lot of search time”, “convenience and high value for money” and “more sense of security” !

Still asking yourself  “How to make money from Google Maps?

Today, every Google Local Guide can easily monetize their Google Maps on NanoWhat

How to turn my hidden places and local spots in to cash?

All the places you saved on your Google Maps can be easily combined into your own e-shop on NanoWhat. We feature unique maps in different cities and promote them to the travellers around the world, who are looking for hidden gems or local insider maps.

You can choose to share your Google map for free, or sell them to earn cash.

We take a service charge for each sale to run the platform and protect your sale, and you keep the rest.

Check out map e-shops from NanoWhat Locals


How to sell my map?

Setting up your e-shop is FREE and we have a team to help you get started.

Let us know if you have questions or check out our step-by-step guide.

Start selling your maps today by clicking here

NanoWhat treasures each Google Local Guide and the time they spend on their maps. Each of them represent a unique personality and different preferences for their perspective of the city.

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