Help - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
If you can't find the answer you're looking for below then you can contact us.
- Can I remove the Powered by Blipstar link?
- I changed my settings but the store locator hasn't updated - why?
- Can you filter by product type when doing a search?
- How do I turn on the Auto-Locate function?
- Can I change the default red icon shown on the map?
- Can I show a logo in the results?
- Can I add my own search form which then calls Blipstar and displays the results on a map?
- How do I change the various pieces of text and labels in the store locator?
- Can my store locator use a different language (e.g. Spanish, French, German...)?
- Can I have a simple text only store locator without a map?
- How do I delete stores?
- How do I add or edit stores?
- I can't find my master spreadsheet. Can I download a copy of the data stored on Blipstar?
- My store is not appearing in the search results - why?
- Can I have a store (e.g. an online store) that shows up EVERY time?
Using Blipstar with other programs
- Can I use it with WordPress?
- How do you get a store locator inside Facebook?
- Can I change the store locator icon on my Facebook page?
- Does Blipstar work with open source e-commerce platforms? (e.g. Open Cart, Magento)
- Which web browsers work with Blipstar?
- Does it work with cell phones and smartphones?
- Can I install Blipstar on my own server?
- I've forgotten my password - what can I do?
- How do I upgrade my account?
- How do I renew my account?
- Can I use Blipstar as an app for finding things other than stores?
- How much does Blipstar cost?
- How do I cancel my account?
- If I create a free account, am I obliged to upgrade?
- The free version is not ad-supported - how does it make money?
- How are you able to undercut your competitors?
- If I sign up will I get bombarded with emails?
- How long has Blipstar been running?
- How do I make a subscription payment?
- Can I set my account to renew automatically?
Can I remove the Powered by Blipstar link?
Yes (if you have upgraded). You can change the setting at Configure > Advanced.
I changed my settings but the store locator hasn't updated - why?
Your web browser has cached the previous version. Right-click on the store locator and Refresh the page/frame.
Can you filter by product type when doing a search?
Yes! You can tag your store location data and allow users to filter based on the tags - see the tutorial.
How do I turn on the Auto-Locate feature?
Log in to your account, go to Configure>Search, and turn to "Auto-locate option" to "On"
Can I change the default red icon shown on the map?
Yes - log in to your account, go to Configure>Icons and upload a custom icon (PNG or JPG format). There are lots of free icons on the web. An excellent source of map icons is the Map Icons collection run by Nicolas Mollet. Alternatively you can specify icons on an individual store basis. To do this add a column to your data called Icon and enter a full url to the relevant image (stored on your server).
Can I show a logo in the results?
Yes - you can specify logos on an individual store basis by adding a column to your data called Logo and entering a full url to the relevant image on your server for each store location.
Can I have a simple text only store locator without a map?
Yes - log in to your account, go to Configure and set the Text only store locator option to "Yes" (it's under the "Basic" tab).
Can I add my own search bar which then calls Blipstar and displays the results on a map?
Yes. Take a look at this tutorial for inspiration.
How do I change the various pieces of text (e.g. Find your nearest store...) in the store locator?
Sign in to your account, go to Configure>Captions text - you can edit all the text labels there, in any language you want.
Can my store locator use a different language (e.g. Spanish, French, German...)?
Yes - all text displayed to the user can be edited, so you can translate it into any language you like. To set all the text in the language of your choice sign in to your account, go to "Configure", click the "Captions text" tab and edit all the text labels there. Blipstar supports UTF-8 encoding so it should be able to support pretty much any language you can think of.
How do I delete stores?
You have two options.
1) Simply delete them from your master spreadsheet file, and re-upload (the master spreadsheet is the file containing your store information - names, addresses etc).
2) Use the Quick Delete option.
How do I add or edit stores?
You basically have two options:
1) Add them to your master spreadsheet (or edit existing ones), and re-upload via the Upload page.
2) Use the "Quick Add" or "Quick Edit" functions.
Help! I can't find my master spreadsheet. Can I download a copy of the data stored on Blipstar?
You certainly can. Sign in to your account, go to "Manage account" and choose the Download as CSV option (the resulting file can be imported into Excel).
My store is not appearing in the search results - why?
The most likely reason is that the address for the location was not complete enough to accurately geocode it (i.e. place it on the map). In the majority of such cases this is caused by incomplete address information in the spreadsheet. See the tips for geocoding for more information.
Can I have a store (e.g. an online store) that shows up EVERY time?
Yes - if you assign a Priority value of 999 to a store it will be listed in the results regardless of where the user searches. To do this go to Upload & Edit, click the Edit button, select the relevant store, click Advanced fields, and enter 999 in the Priority field (don't forget to save!). Alternatively you can have a Priority column in your spreadsheet and enter 999 in the relevant cell.
Can I use it with WordPress?
Absolutely. There's a simple plugin for embedding the store locator in WordPress sites.
How do you get a store locator inside Facebook?
With Blipstar it's easy. See the Facebook store locator tutorial.
Can I change the store locator icon on my Facebook page?
Yes - go to the Admin panel for your page and click Edit page > Edit Settings. Click on the More... link and choose Apps. Find the Blipstar Store Locator app and click Edit Settings. A dialog appears allowing you to change the icon to whatever you like.
Which web browsers work with Blipstar?
Basically all modern web browsers. See a list of currently supported browsers for details. IE6? Forget it!
Does it work with cell phones, smartphones and tablets?
Yes - see info on mobile devices.
Does Blipstar work with open source e-commerce platforms? (e.g. Open Cart, Magento)
Yes. Integration with a number of the most popular e-commerce solutions is outlined in this tutorial.
Can I install Blipstar on my own server?
No. For that check out (the imaginatively named) Blipstar Server.
Why does the order of results change randomly for some searches?
When the user enters a placename into the search field (e.g. a city) rather than a precise address or postal code, the order of results might change. The reason for this is that Blipstar takes into account the size of the geographic area searched for, and treats all locations within it equally (and randomly orders results within that area). If it didn't then store locations that happen to be near the geographic center point of the city would have an unfair advantage in that they will always appear first. This behaviour can be turned off in Configure>Results by setting "Mix results within search area" to No.
Why are the distances shown different from the driving directions distance?
The results show straight-line distances ("as the crow flies") and do not take the road network into consideration. This is for speed as calculating driving time for lots of locations in real-time is not currently possible.
Which countries does Blipstar support?
Lots - basically if a country is mapped by Google Maps then your store locator can include locations within that country. See a list of currently supported countries.
I've forgotten my password, what can I do?
You can get a password reminder.
How do I upgrade my account?
Log in to your account, click the "Upgrade" button, fill in the small form and click "Upgrade your account". An invoice will be emailed automatically.
How do I renew my account?
Log in to your account, click the "Renew" button, and then the "Confirm renewal" button. An invoice will be emailed automatically. From this page you can also set your account to auto-renew.
Can I use Blipstar as an app for finding things other than stores?
Yes - you can use Blipstar to create all manner of "Find your nearest..." geolocation tools. If you sell products via a number of retailers or outlets, it's ideal as a way for your customers to find their nearest stockist. Or restaurants, clubs, libraries, churches, sales-persons etc etc. Check out this ideas page for some inspiration.
How much does Blipstar cost?
It depends on the number of stores you want to have. Check out the price list.
How do I cancel my account?
You don't need to do anything or actively "opt out". Just stop using your account/store locator and ignore the renewal reminder to let the account expire. Please note subscription fees are non-refundable unless it is within 30 days of upgrading the account in which case you can get a full refund.
If I sign up will I get bombarded with emails?
No. Blipstar never do mass mailing or newsletters or give your email address to anyone else. We know how annoying it can be. The only thing we'll do is email you if your account is due for renewal or closed.
If I create a free account, am I obliged to upgrade?
Not at all.
The free version is not ad-supported - how does it make money?
It doesn't. If you have less than 26 locations then it's free to use Blipstar - and the great thing is this version is fully-functioning with no annoying ads (bar a link to Blipstar itself). Our hope is that people will see what a great zip code locator it is, tell their friends, and perhaps upgrade later on (which removes the Blipstar link) - the so-called Freemium model.
How are you able to undercut your competitors?
Alas there's no magic formula but the service is so competitively priced for two main reasons.
- 1. Costs are kept low and the savings passed on to you
- 2. We're not greedy - providing a great product whilst still paying the bills is the basic approach
How long has Blipstar been running?
Since the summer of 2006.
How do I make a subscription payment?
Just go to the secure payment page and follow the instructions. Blipstar uses PayPal which is fast, safe and secure. You can even use a credit card without having a PayPal account!
Can I set my account to renew automatically?
Yes. Just go to Renew and set the auto-renew option to Yes.