Advice and answers from the mySidewalk Team

Sharable Maps are full-screen, interactive maps that are made publicly accessible. These maps give you the opportunity to share the insights you've gained using data with anyone through a link, an embed, or on a social media page. Viewers can then interact with the map through Annotations, which are customizable pins that highlight specific places on the map where you want to draw people's attention. Annotations allow you to provide context and gather feedback from team members or residents in your area. 


Why would I use a Sharable Map?

Here are 5 examples of how you could use Sharable Maps

  • Decide Your Next Public Meeting Location: Share the maps internally and include a quick poll to decide on the best public meeting locations for your project.
  • Support a Decision: If everyone is asking you “why”, show them how you got there. Sharable Maps with Annotations work great for supporting decisions, explaining your process, and moving projects forward.
  • Poll Community Members: Do your community members’ perceptions match what the data says? Set up a map with annotations highlighting specific places to gather feedback and measure results.
  • Be an Expert: The next time a city council member, school board head, or project manager asks you a question like “How many residents live below the poverty line in this neighborhood?” send them an interactive map packed with answers.
  • Create a Fast Deliverable: Since they are easy to create and you can edit them in real time, Sharable Maps with Annotations are awesome for any type of meeting or formal presentation.

It will look similar to this to the people viewing it:


Ready to make one?

First, create a map you would like to share. You can either create a new map from scratch, or create your map using a template. 

Before you share, here are a few things you can do to your map to customize it for your project:

  1. Add a description to your map: add context to your map by describing it to others to help them better understand the data 
  2. Add charts to your map: charts allow you to visualize additional and multi-dimensional data alongside your map
  3. Add a mySidewalk layer, and/or a custom layer: layers offer additional insight to the place you are analyzing
  4. Filter your visible data: control the minimum and maximum values of the datasets displayed on your map 
  5. Add annotations: provide context to a specific area on your map that you want to draw attention to 


Share Your Map

Once your map is customized to your project and location, the next step is to share it with people so they can interact with it and offer feedback. To share a map:

  1. Save the map by clicking the green Save button in the upper-right side of the map page
  2. Once saved, click Share to the right of the Save button
  3. Switch the Link sharing status toggle to on 
  4. The Share tab will expand showing options for Shared link, Embed this map, and Share with...

Option 1 - Share the URL for your map

  1. Copy the link under Shared link by either highlighting it > right click > copy or by clicking on the two green squares with a + sign to copy the link to your clipboard
  1. Paste the link into a new tab or window to see what your shared map will look like to those viewing it
  2. You can distribute this link however you like, and those who have access to the link will be able to view the shared map


Option 2 - Embed a shared map

  1. Copy the HTML snipped under Embed this map by either highlighting it, right clicking and selecting Copy, or by clicking on the two green squares with a + sign to copy the link to your clipboard
  2. Paste your HTML snippet into any website using iFrame and it will embed your interactive map directly into the site
  3. Note: If the website where you are wanting to embed your map uses Embedly (see a list of websites that use Embedly here) you will use your map URL to embed, not the HTML snippet.


Option 3 - Share your map to social media pages

  1. At the bottom of the Share tab, click on Share with...
  2. From here, you have the option to share the map to any of your social media pages or email
  3. Click on an icon to share it (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Email, or LinkedIn)

You can find your shared maps in the Maps tab of your home page under the drop-down menu option Shared Maps

Note: If/when you
no longer want the map to be visible to the public, simply switch the toggle under Share to off

Now that you know how to create and share a map, you may want to check out:

  1. Project folders: learn about how to organize your project in an easy to find location
  2. Public profiles: learn about how to communicate and engage others by sharing your findings


Did this answer your question?