Posted October 31, 2011 2:31 pm by with 3 comments

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As of January 1, 2012 Google is going to start charging for API calls to Google Maps that exceed 25,000 per day.

According to Management Today

Websites that are likely to be hit by the ‘map tax’ include travel firms, hotel chains and big corporations that use Google Maps to direct customers to headquarters, destinations and tourist hotspots.

So, the question is, how much will companies pay for the map privilege? Word on the web is that Google will charge $4 per 1,000 views in excess of the daily limit.

Google denies reneging on its ‘do no evil’ mantra with the charge, insisting that it ‘will only affect 0.35% of users’.

Now, the news here isn’t really anything that Google is doing wrong or out of line. What is interesting is seeing more and more signs of just where Google envisions its revenue coming from in the future as it starts to wean itself off its current major dependence on paid search ads for somewhere north of 90% of their total revenue.

Google introduced Google Anayltics Premium services recently as well and it appears as if they are looking to go after the heaviest users of their services to get something from them. Kind of like an OccupyInternet approach where they are looking for the 1% to goose the bottom line.

Signs of things to come? Pay per search over a certain limit? Who knows?

What do you think Google could ultimately charge for in the future and why?

P.S. – You rarely get any mention of Trenton, NJ in anything that doesn’t involve crime or politics (although they are usually the same story) so here’s to my home state capital getting some Google Map love :-).

  • The headlines make this sound much more daunting than it is. Using Google Maps in a large enterprise has always been a bit of a risk (as they are likely to blackout your IP over a certain number of requests). I think, like many things of value, a reliable service is worth paying for (and getting the first 25,000 free per day is generous). I think the ‘occupy’ reference is a bit of a stretch, though.

  • The playing field for SEO has become increasingly tilted towards organizations that can afford massive SEO efforts. Someone can have a great site and follow all the rules, but without the big bucks to hire articles writers, social media experts, and bloggers, they never see light past page 6. Its nice to see the big benefactors of internet search paying more for their ‘privileged’ positioning.

  • Kate M

    I’ve just developed to put on the map all translators in the world. I just hope we won’t have enough traffic to get charged.