Map & Heat Map


Map charts are mainly used when viewing precise geographical data points. This chart type requires specific data. It needs a single object that returns coordinates (latitude/longitude) with a label, and a measure that will be attached to each of these coordinates. The size of a circle on a map is determined by how large the measure is for a coordinate. The larger the circle, the higher the measure value. 

Unless you actually have latitude and longitude stored in your database you will need to create a table or view that contains the latitude and longitude that you can then join to your dataset ; this might be at a very granular level such as postcode or it might be at a higher level such as mapping ‘Northern Sales Region’ to the latitude and longitude for somewhere central to your sales region of that name (Wikipedia entries on most cities will provide their Latitude/ Longitude).


An example of a Map using different colours to shows customers who have less than 100 employees, between 100 and 1000 employees and over 1000 employees.

Heat Map

This requires the same dimension object as a map to ascertain Latitude/ Longitude. Heat maps are used when the precise location is not important, but the general location is. For example, the number of orders in a certain area, the colours in the heat map indicate the areas where there is a bigger concentration of the measure value.


This example uses a Heat Map to show that the customers with the largest number of employees are mainly in the London and Midland regions.

Please also refer to How to Create Map Charts for more information.