How to Drop a Pin in Google Maps

If you’re a Google Maps user, you may be missing out on a key functionality if you’re not using pins to save locations. These location markers are helpful for researching destinations, saving addresses, and planning trips. You can drop, save, and access pins from the Google Maps mobile app or a web browser. 

What are pins in Google Maps?

Pins are convenient tools for marking location in Google Maps. Businesses and other organizations can “claim” a pin for their address and add relevant information like hours of operation, contact information, and frequently asked questions.

Pins can have different colors and icons to indicate different types of locations. Restaurants, for example, are usually indicated by an orange pin with a fork and knife icon. Retail stores are indicated by a blue pin with a shopping bag icon. Some categories of locations share a color; for instance, parks and gyms both have green pins, but parks have a tree icon and gyms have a dumbbell icon.

How to drop a pin from your iPhone or Android

This is how you can drop a pin in Google Maps from your mobile device.

  1. Start by configuring the app on your mobile device

    Download Google Maps for Android, iPhone, or iPad. Open the app, allow Google Maps to use your location, and sign in to your Google account if prompted. Then, use one of the following three methods to drop a pin.

  2. Search for pins

    Use the search bar or voice search feature to search for a known location. This could be a street address, organization name, geographic region, or contact (if enabled).Screenshot of Google Maps for iOS.
    Choose the correct location from the search results. A pin will automatically drop in the selected location.

    Save the pin to a list, or share the pin with your contacts.

  3. Browse pins

    Browse nearby locations using the categories across the top of the screen.
    Screenshot of Google Maps search bar.
    Select an organization (restaurant, hotel, gas station, etc.) from the list to view its pin.

    Save the pin to a list, or share the pin with your contacts.

  4. Manually place a pin

    Tap the screen and hold to drop a pin in any location. Tap and hold again to move the pin.
    Screenshot of Google Maps for iOS.
    Add a label to the pin to save it. Tap the “X” in the search bar to remove the pin.

How to drop a pin from web browser

Start by visiting https://www.google.com/maps. Use one of the following three methods to drop a pin.

Search for a pin

  1. Use the search bar to search for a known location. This could be a street address, organization name, geographic region, or contact (if enabled).
  1. Select the correct location from the search results. A pin will automatically drop at the correct address and, if it’s a registered organization, relevant information will appear in a panel to the left.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Save or share the pin or send to your phone if desired.

Browse pins

  1. Browse nearby locations using the categories at the end of the panel to the left.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Select a location (restaurant, grocery store, gas station, etc.) from the list to view its pin. If it’s a registered organization, relevant information will appear in a panel to the left.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Save or share the pin or send to your phone if desired.

Manually place a pin

  1. Click anywhere on the map to drop the pin.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.

 

  1. If the pin is at a known address, it will appear in a panel to the left.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. If the pin is not at a known address, click again to display coordinates in the same spot as the pin.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Save or share the pin or send it to your phone if desired.

How to organize pins in lists

When you click “Save” under a pin’s details, a menu appears with all of the available lists to which you can save the pin. By default, Google Maps provides three lists you can use to organize your saved pins. These lists are Favorites, Want to go, and Starred places. You can also create custom lists. Custom lists may be organized around types of locations, destinations, or planned trips, for example.

Creating a custom list

  1. Click “Save” under pin details. Select “New list” from the menu that appears.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Enter the name of your new list and click “Create”.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.

How to access your saved pins

The whole point of saving a pin is to be able to access it later. One pin may exist in multiple lists, which could be either public or private. You can also share your list with others by copying the unique URL or sharing it directly through Facebook or Twitter.

Regardless of the device from which you access your pins, there are a number of actions you can take to better organize your lists. This includes adding descriptions to lists or notes to individual pins. These details help provide context about why the list was created or why a pin was included.

From mobile app

  1. Select “Saved” from the horizontal menu bar at bottom of the screen.
Screenshot of Google Maps for iOS.
  1. Select the relevant list to view saved pins.
Screenshot of Google Maps for iOS.

From a web browser

  1. Click the hamburger menu at the top left of the screen and select “Your places” from the menu.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Select “Saved” from the horizontal menu bar at the top.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
  1. Select the relevant list to view saved pins. From this view, you can also select the three vertical dots at the top right to control the list settings.
Screenshot of Google Maps in web browser.
Kaiti Norton
Kaiti Norton is a Nashville-based Content Writer for TechnologyAdvice, a full-service B2B media company. She is passionate about helping brands build genuine connections with their customers through relatable, research-based content. When she's not writing about technology, she's sharing her musings about fashion, cats, books, and skincare on her blog.

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