In my recent project I faced the task of doing translation of property address in form we usually use it into global coordinates, that can be plotted on the map. Using Google API services this task is quite easy. You can check example and source code below
Enter any address below to locate it on the map
Another way to use Geocoding API is though HTTP GET request. This way is more suitable to beused in PHP scripts. All is needed is to make request to the URl below, substituting the real address.
Response is JSON encoded object, you can see more sample at Google Geocoding API help page