Here at Google Maps Platform, we are embracing low-code development. For more than 15 years, we’ve helped customers like Argos, Dunzo, and Redfin drive success by building custom location-based solutions from scratch. While this approach allows for deep customization, we recognize that not all of our customers have the resources or bandwidth to complete these implementations. One of our most important principles here at Google is “build for everyone.” That’s why we made it easier–regardless of budget or expertise–to build great location-based solutions with Quick Builder. But first, we’ll cover what low-code is and why we’re embracing the movement
What is low-code development?
Low code is a visual approach to software development that minimizes the amount of code you need to write from scratch. Low-code tools abstract coding into an intuitive, natural-language based interface that anyone can use, even if you do not know how to code. These tools offer easy access to sophisticated technology, and help enable you to make important decisions about data, design, and functionality. Building demos for stakeholders and demonstrating the tradeoffs of certain decisions is often as simple as clicking a few buttons in the user interface.
The result is that you get custom, stress-tested and production-ready code faster than if you’d written it yourself. You can copy and paste that output into your codebase verbatim, or use it as a template to customize and extend as much as you’d like.
Organizations around the world are gravitating to low-code tools because they make designing and developing high-quality software easier than ever. Gartner recently reported that low-code will continue to evolve. And by 2025, half of all new low-code clients will come from buyers outside of IT. With low-code, everyone is enabled to build.hether you know how to code or not, you can explore design decisions easily and quickly.
Introducing Quick Builder
You can now leverage Quick Builder, an intuitive tool to discover, explore, and deploy recommended APIs for your mapping needs. No matter what your technical skill or experience level is, you can use the tool to help grow your business, and deploy to production faster, with less time spent on learning and testing.
We are building out a portfolio of experiences. From within the Google Maps Platform section of the Google Cloud Console, you can find a library of low-code templates to explore. To start, we’ve compiled three common location-based experiences:
- Locator Plus to help drive more people to your location
Locator Plus helps users find your physical locations on a map and allows you to easily include key details, such as hours of operation, available services, user reviews, and photos for each location. Whether you’re a retailer that’s rolling out buy online, pick up in store options, or a bank that wants to help customers find hard to spot ATMs, Locator Plus can easily help your users identify the best location to visit.
- Address Selection to help speed up checkout and increase conversion
When users have to manually enter their addresses, mistakes can lead to lowered conversions and poor user experiences like undeliverable packages or failed credit card charges. Address Selection, powered by our Place Autocomplete API, can help make your customer sign-up and checkout experience easier and faster, by instantly suggesting accurate, well-formatted addresses with just a few keystrokes.
- Neighborhood Discovery to augment your maps with local knowledge
For real estate or travel companies, your users want to get a sense of what’s in the neighborhood: proximity to work, a favorite restaurant, or coffee shop. With Neighborhood Discovery, you can create a hyperlocal experience by displaying a dynamic map of tailored, recommended amenities and attractions.
Quick Builder is a great tool for visual learners. You can add your data, play with a real-time preview, and decide which of the Google-suggested designs best fit your business needs. When you’re happy, you can export custom sample code or use our Cloud Hosting feature to embed the solution in your website with just a single line of code. With Quick Builder, you can get personalized, production-ready code and deploy to a production environment more quickly than ever before.
Looking to the future
This is just the beginning. We’re constantly thinking of ways to help our users get the most out of their Google Maps Platform deployments. Stay tuned for more low-code solution templates to be added to the Quick Builder library. To learn more about Quick Builder, check out our MapsOnAir webinar.
For more information on Google Maps Platform, visit our website.
By: Matt Brightman (Product Manager, Google Maps Platform)
Source: Google Cloud Blog
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