Even with competition from OpenStreetMap, Google’s Maps service continues to be the clear favorite for developers when it comes to integrating mapping into their sites and apps. Now, after years of offering nothing more than a simplistic map integrated ad unit (see example here), Google has announced that developers are getting six new ad formats and customization capabilities.

More specifically, this update brings in the well-known link unit, which makes it easier for developers to subtly include advertisements. From my own experience, link units and Adsense as a whole wont bring in that much cash for developers unless they’re generating decent levels of traffic (30K+ monthly visits), but the flexibility Google now provides makes it a much more interesting (and less intrusive) option.

As we stated above, these new units can now be customized. According to the announcement, Google now supports “custom colors for the ad unit’s background, border, link, text and URL. This enables you to set a color scheme that complements the design of your site.”

You can play with these new offerings via the link below. If your interest is piqued, check out the developer documentation and Maps API reference.

➤ New Maps Ads