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Growing Up - New Features We've Added to Hero Maps Premium

HeroMaps Premium has grown up a bit since we’ve released it just over three months ago. While it shipped with quite a few features not present in the free version – HeroMaps Pro – we had our ears close to the ground for any user feedback that could help us improve Maps and expand its functionality.

The feedback came, and we’re proud to say that a mere three months after its launch, HeroMaps Premium has received a whole bundle of updates and new features: some to provide the user with additional control when implementing a map, and one or two other features that provide extra functionality to the front-end for visitors to the website.

Here’s a brief rundown of some of the functionality that has been added since launch.

Marker Clustering

Marker Clustering allows markers that would overlay each other to be combined into a single marker cluster, which will zoom in to make all markers in that cluster visible when clicked on. This setting is off by default, and can be switched on in the Advanced Settings tab of your map’s dashboard.

Marker Clustering

Marker CSV import

When we originally released Maps, we only envisioned the creation of maps with a couple of markers on it, but it turned out that we under-estimated the need for users to be able to add large numbers of markers relatively quickly.

CSV Marker imports became the first feature we added to maps, providing users of the plugin with csv and xls templates they could use to add – potentially – thousands of makers to their maps.

Marker Table Paging

Adding CSV imports fulfilled one need, but created a new issue which we needed to resolve – all markers added to the map were listed on a single page. Not a problem if your marker count comprised a single digit, but if you added a thousand you were in for a very long scroll.

The solution was simple enough – adding pagination – and filtering according to category.

Marker List

Category renaming

This was something of a quality-of-life improvement, since category names aren’t something that changes very often, if at all. Then again, typos do happen, and having to recreate a category because of something that minor shouldn’t be necessary, so the ability to rename categories was added.

Category Renaming

Front-end search

This feature gives your users the ability to perform searches on the map in exactly the same way they would be able to do a search on Google Maps itself. The feature can be toggled on the map settings tab.

Map search

Category tabs

Initially, HeroMaps allowed the display of selected categories of your markers on the map by means of a drop-down menu – however, we were faced with the limitation that only one category could be displayed on the map at one time.

For those cases where a user may want to see multiple categories at once, we have now added category tabs, which can be toggled on or off by the user so they can see any combination of categories.

The tabs can be placed at the top or bottom of the map, and comes with a range of styling options. The options for the tabs can be found in the Settings tab of your map’s dashboard.

You can see the category selection in action below – on the left, only one category is active, while on the right, both available categories are selected and showing.

Tabbed Marker Categories

Mobile Scroll/Panning lock

Mobile users had an issue with maps that were full-screen on their mobile – especially if the map was embedded on a page that had additional info below the map. Attempting to scroll past the map had the user panning around the map – in order to stop this from happening we added the Mobile Pan Lock to the settings tab – this will now allow your users to scroll past the map.

Show My Location

If this control is switched on – you can find it in the Controls tab of your map’s dashboard – users will be able to use the control to center the map on their location. This is especially useful if you want to provide users with directions to a location for your store/business.

Get Directions

Found in the Settings tab of your map’s dashboard, switching the setting on will add a Get Directions button to your marker’s info-boxes – a simple tap on this will provide users with directions from their location. This will open Google Maps in a separate tab/window with directions for the user.

That covers the majority of the additions we’ve made to HeroMaps – apart from other optimisations and the odd bug-fix here and there.

If you have used Hero Maps, we’d love to see how you implemented it – so drop us a message or a link on Twitter or Facebook, and feel free to give us a review on the CodeCanyon product page.
Of course, if you have any other feedback – areas you feel we can improve on for example – you are more than welcome to send that to us too.

We look forward to hearing from you.