Indoor mapping for workplace solutions: static maps vs. interactive maps, which is best?

Indoor maps are a key component of workplace solutions because they empower employees to find all the important information they need in one visual experience. But how do you find the right map for your solution?

There are two different types of indoor maps: static maps and interactive maps. As the names indicate, one is static and the other one is interactive, but this is not the only difference between the two.

Static indoor maps

A static map is a CAD, pdf, or image that you add to your solution. It enables you to overlay static data and points of interest, but like a printed map you cannot change the layout, the look of the map, or the data once it is published.

A static map is easy to implement, but it does not allow users to interact with the data on the map. Here are the most important pros and cons of static maps:


  • Easy to implement
  • Overlaid data
  • Cheaper


  • No interaction with the data
  • No profile-based map views
  • No routing options
  • Quickly gets outdated

Interactive indoor maps

An interactive indoor map is a dynamic map that can change and adapt to what is happening in the real world, that is up to date, and relevant to the use case.

It easily integrates with third-party data systems and IoT devices, empowering you and your clients to visualize important data in real time. This enables you to leverage your technology and make your solution look even better, but it also enables end-users to interact with the data, e.g. find and book available desks or rooms directly through the map.

Contrary to a static map, an interactive mapping platform evolves with your needs and it scales with your business. Here are some of the most important pros and cons of interactive maps:


  • Fully interactive experience - content can be added and removed dynamically based on who is using the map and what their needs are
  • Booking directly through the map
  • Profile-based map views for staff, security, visitors, facility managers, etc. 
  • Real-time data and POI information
  • Turn-by-turn wayfinding
  • Offers upsell opportunities


  • Requires some developer skills to implement
  • More expensive

Creating your own indoor map

Are you wondering if it would be better (or cheaper) to create your own map? A lot of the organizations we talk to are considering whether they should create their own indoor map or buy from a mapping provider. 

However, creating a map is not easy. It requires a lot of development and maintenance not to mention updates when you or your clients make changes to the office layout. To give you an idea of the workload and costs of creating an indoor map, we have written this article about the ROI of indoor mapping.

To sum up, static maps offer an easy overview of a physical space with the option to overlay data. If your layout or the data you want to communicate does not change very often, a static map may cover your needs. However, if you are looking for a map that is easy to update and enables you to visualize real-time data, and allows the end-user to interact with the map, an interactive map is the best choice for your solution.

Reach out to us if you want to discuss your mapping needs and requirements with one of our map experts. You can also book a free demo to explore what your solution would look like with MapsIndoors.

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