Why isn't the My Location button accurately finding my location
The My Location button is used to instruct the store locator software to automatically geolocate a user - that is, to find their position (their latitude and longitude coordinates to be precise!) on the map so that their closest store location can be identified by our software. In some cases, you may notice that this geolocation process isn't accurate, so you are shown as being in one location on the map when actually you are some distance away.
The first thing you should check when you see this happening is that you are accessing your store locator on a page which is secured with an SSL certificate. This means, the page is accessed via HTTPS instead of HTTP (note the missing 'S' on the latter which stands for 'Secure'). For example, here are two versions of the same page, one where the link has HTTPS at the start and the other has only HTTP:
- Secure (Accurate) version: https://www.storelocatorwidgets.com/admin/preview
- Insecure (Inaccurate) version: http://www.storelocatorwidgets.com/admin/preview
If you would like to test the difference between the Secure and Insecure versions of the page for your device, try accessing the above two pages and click on the My Location button see where your are shown to be located.
The reason why the Secure page is more accurate is because of a change that Google introduced to the software in Chrome and Apple in Safari in late 2016. They restricted accurate geolocation using such highly accurate services in your smartphone such as GPS (Global Positioning Satellites), cell tower locations and WiFi location databases so that it only works when the website is secured using an SSL certificate (i.e using the HTTPS version of the page). If HTTPS isn't present, geolocation is blocked. In this scenario, we use IP based geolocation which is not as accurate as smartphone (GPS) based geolocation or using WiFi network information on a desktop.
As such, we highly recommend that our customers secure the page on which their locator is hosted using an SSL certificate. How to do this depends on how your web page is hosted - many services includes these for free and it is either just a matter of updating the link to the locator on your web page to point to the HTTPS version of the page or enabling it in your settings.
We recognize this is a complicated topic so if you are in any doubt, please contact us to chat more about it!