How To Use Google Maps and MapQuest For Job Search

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Job sites can be useful tools for any jobseeker, and online mapping services like Google Maps and MapQuest can help you find more employers you may not know about.

Here's how:

Check out the employers in your area (or your target location if you are moving), and learn as much as you can about them. Then, you can work on connecting with the employer, and find jobs before the jobs are posted for everyone else to see and apply for.

The best strategy is to run your searches in both Google Maps and Mapquest.com. They may show you different search results, and you will be expanding your possibilities by checking the employers you get from each.

How to Find Employers with a Map Search

First, visit maps.Google.com or www.Mapquest.com, and type in your target location. Next, use the location search function. Find it on Google by clicking the "Search nearby" link to open up a search bar. On Mapquest, simply use the Search bar above the map.

When you are on the map page for the location you want, type your query into the search bar, and the map will populate with dots where those businesses are located. Then, to see the employers and find contact information:
  • In Google Maps, click on the "list view" option, and Google will show you detailed information for all of the entries in the search results. Click on the employer name, and Google will provide links to the employer website, directions, and the "Street View" (if available).
  • In MapQuest, simply scroll down the list on the left side of the screen which lists the employers and their contact information with a link to directions but no link to the employer website. MapQuest does allow you to Save entries, if you set up an account (free)
The maps are printable, and both Google and MapQuest can generate driving directions and mass transit connections for you.

Search for Categories of Employers

You hopefully know the kind of employer you want to work for, so search on the appropriate term, like these:
  • Restaurant
  • Hospital
  • Hotel
  • Accounting firm
  • Advertising agency
  • Bookstore
  • Printer
  • Construction company
  • Transportation company
Or whatever else you want. Be sure to think in terms of how your target business would describe itself - it's probably a "hospital" (singular) vs. "hospitals" (plural). Maybe the employer calls itself a "bus company" rather than a "transportation company," so try different searches -- as usual -- to find what you want.

Category Search Examples

In the examples below, I wanted to find construction companies. So, I typed the term "construction company" into the search bar for both Google Maps and MapQuest, and I enclosed the words within quotation marks to be sure that both Google and MapQuest understood that I wanted those two words in a phrase, side by side.

At the top of the listings for each example, you'll see advertised listings (see the word "Ad" circled on both). Those companies might be your best prospects since they are paying for this added visibility.
  • Google Maps
The Google Map has both large red dots which are labelled with the company name as well as smaller red dots which are construction companies but not identified on the map until you run your mouse over them. Run your mouse over those red dots to discover the name of the organization, as I did in the example below. For more information about them, click on the name.

Google.com
  • Mapquest.com
The MapQuest map has large dots, which are numbered, and the numbers beside the listing correspond with the numbers on the map. Notice that the advertisers have green dots and the other listings have purple dots.

Mapquest.com

Search for Specific Employers by Name

If you already know the name of the employer, like the Apple Store or the Cheesecake Factory, type the employer name into the search bar, and, again, the map will populate with dots where the employer is located. The contact information will be provided in the lists of employers, as usual.

Check Out the Employers on Your List

Now that you have a new list of employers, check them out!
  • Google the employers to see what you find out about them.
  • Visit the employer websites -- if any -- to see what you can learn about them. Do you like what you find?
  • Do they have job postings on their website? Create a Google Alert for the employer if you find postings, or just visit the website regularly to look for them.
  • Search for job postings on sites like Indeed.com, CareerBuilder, Monster, etc. for these employers. And, don't forget to check Craigslist.org which is used by MANY small employers.
Then, to find work with these employers, consider visiting the employer's actual location. See if the commute is reasonable and the neighborhood OK. Maybe even stop by to say hello, and ask if they have any jobs open. Or, reach out to them via email or telephone. Tell them who you are and what you do, and ask them if they have any need for people who do the kind of job you want to do. If they do, ask them if you can send a resume and be considered for any job openings they have. At a minimum, ask for the name of the person you should stay in touch with in the future.

For more information about leveraging Google for your job search, read my Guide to Using Google for Job Search.

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