Google Maps Cloud Billing: Usage and Channel Parameters

When it comes to finding your way, chances are you most often turn to Google Maps when you need directions. You’re not alone. Thousands of organizations across all business sectors turn to Google Maps Platform for in-depth location support.

Google has always provided reliable, user-friendly mapping services, and more organizations are realizing the importance of location-based data in business.

From rideshare services to asset tracking, gaming to customer checkout forms — and many other use cases, Google’s accurate spatial data helps organizations of all sizes solve their toughest location-based problems.

Based on a pay-as-you-go model, Google Maps Platform offers pricing that scales to fit any user’s needs without commitments, termination fees or usage limits. All users need to do is keep an eye on their usage to make sure they stay on budget.

That used to be a challenge, but not anymore. There are several new tools to help you stay within your usage parameters and on budget.

The first optional solution focuses on channel parameters. You can simplify usage tracking and reporting by simply adding a unique channel parameter within your Google Maps service request. Here’s how.

Let’s say you have a client-facing web app utilizing Google’s Dynamic JavaScript basemaps that allows your customers to find your store locations. Within your Google Maps JavaScript request, you would add your unique channel parameter after you input your personalized API key. Here's an example:

<script src="https://maps.googleapis.com/maps/api/js?&key=YOUR_API_KEY &channel=UNIQUE_CHANNEL_NAME&libraries=places&callback=initMap" async defer></script>

Once you have implemented that parameter, you will then be able to view a breakdown of your usage per application/service within the Cloud Console Billing Reports.

Google Maps Platform users can even access unique channel usage by exporting billing activity to BigQuery. You can track total invoice costs, the monthly sum of all costs, the details of each cost type on a monthly basis and many other customized reporting parameters.

Using unique channel parameters is just one way to keep Google Maps Platform usage under control. Here at Onix, we’ve also created a usage and billing management tool that you can combine with your unique channel parameters. OnSpend™ by Onix makes it easier to track spending over time across multiple Google Maps Platform and Google Cloud Platform projects.

In fact, using OnSpend with channel parameters allows you to do less work, and also gives you the ability to what apps and/or web properties are being used the most. That way you can track spend in a more granular way.

With tools like these available, there’s no reason why you should have Google Maps Platform billing surprises. It’s easy to visualize your usage and billing costs at any time in the cloud. Now is a great time to end your cloud billing and budget management challenges.

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MEET THE AUTHOR

Michael Sliwka, Technical Account Manager

Michael Sliwka, Technical Account Manager

Michael is a Technical Account Manager at Onix. His primary focus is assisting customers implement and optimize the Google Maps APIs. Michael has worked in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors in North America and abroad, where he has assisted organizations in the utilization of geolocation technology.

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