Maps are powerful tools that can be used in a variety of situations, from visualizing where customers live, to defining sales territories, to plotting crime patterns in neighborhoods. The first step in creating a map is to convert street addresses to latitude and longitude coordinates through a process called geocoding. You may not realize it, but you already encounter geocoding each time you type an address into a service like Google Maps or look up the school district for a property that is listed for sale on a real estate website.This article will show you the steps for converting street addresses into latitude and longitude coordinates using the LatLon.io geocoding API.
Step 1: Get your API Token
To make a request to the geocoding API, you will need a valid API token. Log in
to your account at LatLon.io and navigate to your account page
. Your API token will be visible on your account page and looks like a long string of random letters and numbers.
Step 2: Format your Request
Your request should be in the format:https://latlon.io/api/v1/geocode?address=<address_to_geocode>&token=<api_token>For example, if your API token was “abc123” and you wanted to geocode the address of the White House, your request would be:https://latlon.io/api/v1/geocode?address=1600%20Pennsylvania%20Ave%20NW%2C%20Washington%2C%20DC%2020502&token=abc123Notice that the address field has been URL encoded, which means that the special characters like spaces and commas have been converted to “%20” and “%2C” respectively. URL encoding ensures that no matter what special characters the address contains, it will still be a valid web address.
Step 3: Make the Request
The easiest way to make your request is to just paste the url from step 2 into a Web browser. You can also make the request via the cURL command in your terminal, your programming language of choice, or with an interactive REST client like Advanced REST Client
. For code samples in many popular languages, visit the interactive console on the LatLon.io documentation
. To view a code sample in your favorite language:
- Enter your values for the address and token fields in the console
- Click “Call Resource”
- Select the “Code Example” tab and select your favorite language
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