Tableau Maps: Complete Tutorial of Mapping (Examples)

Tableau’s geo-mapping capability allows users to plot the geographical data and create visualizations. Users can create interactive maps in Tableau based on their requirements. This Tableau maps tutorial explains the procedure for constructing various types of maps.

You can use the data set, namely ‘Sample Superstore.csv, ’ to understand the demonstration given in the tutorial.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

Users can plot shapes on the maps based on the geographical details available in the data set. Plotting shapes on maps can be used to mark the geographical location. It marks the center point of any location details in the data source.

This method of plotting shapes should be used in both Tableau-generated location details and customized location details (available in the location data set). The size and color of shapes that describe geography’s location should be modified to the measurement values of the specific location.

This tableau map example gives the procedure for plotting different types of shapes.

Step 1) Go to a new worksheet.

  1. Drag ‘State’ into the Detail icon present in the Marks card.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

It creates a Map using the geographical location of the state. By default, Tableau shows a dot-shaped structure to plot the location. It can be changed by following the given steps.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

Step 2) In the next screen,

  1. Go to Mark’s card.
  2. Click on the dropdown button, as shown in the image.
  3. Select the ‘Shape’ icon present in the list.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

Step 3) In the next screen,

  1. Click on the Shape icon present in the Marks card.
  2. Select the star shape from the list.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

Step 4) In the next screen,

  1. Click on the Size icon present in the Mark’s card.
  2. It shows a slider to increase or decrease the size of the plots. You can drag the slider to the right side to increase the size of the star-shaped plot.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

It creates a map with the locations plotted using the star-shaped structure.

Plotting Shapes on Maps

Tableau Symbol Maps Data Visualizations

Tableau Symbol maps are similar to plotting shapes on point distribution maps. The location of maps can be represented as a symbol, which also denotes the status of key performance indicators in various locations. It can be used to show the location and details of measures.

It can create interactive tableau map visualizations, as symbols represent the increase or decrease in key performance indicators.

For example, if you want to know about the increase or decrease in profit in different locations, you can use the proportional symbol maps. The procedure to create a Tableau mapping symbol is given as follows.

Step 1) Go to a new Worksheet.

  1. Right-click on the ‘Profit’ present in the Measures pane.
  2. Select ‘Create’ from the list.
  3. Click on ‘Calculated Field’ from the sub-list.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Step 2) It opens a Calculated Field Window.

  1. Enter the name as ‘Profit Flag’.
  2. Then write the formula to show a positive or negative profit as given in the image.
  3. Click on the OK button.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Step 3) Drag the newly created calculated field, namely ‘Profit Flag’, into the Shape icon in the Marks card.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Step 4) In the next window,

  1. Click on the Shape icon present on Marks’s card.
  2. It opens the ‘Edit Shape’ Window.
  3. Click on the drop-down button present in ‘Select shape Palette’.
  4. Select the shape from ‘Thin Arrows’ present on the list.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Step 5) Now in the next screen,

  1. Click on the ‘Negative’ member present on the left side of the window.
  2. Now click on the down arrow shape present in the palette. This assigns the down arrow shape into ‘Negative’.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Step 6) Next,

  1. Click on the ‘Positive’ member present on the left side of the window.
  2. Now click on the up-arrow shape present in the palette. This makes an up-arrow shape to ‘Positive’.
  3. Click on OK.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Step 7) In this screen,

  1. Go to the Marks card and click on the size icon.
  2. Drag the slider to the right side to increase the size of symbols present in the map.

Tableau Symbol Maps

It creates a symbol map. The symbols represent the location of geography and the increase or decrease in profits.

Tableau Symbol Maps

Tableau Filled Maps with Example

Filled maps show the entire region of the geography present in the data set. In the above chart types, the geography location is denoted using a shape in the middle of the geography. But in filled maps, the whole region is covered to show the entire map.

Complete-filled maps include data points of the whole region of the geography. It covers the entire territory of geography using a polygon. Thus, interactive and highly defined visualizations can be created using the filled maps option in Tableau.

The procedure for creating filled maps in Tableau is shown below.

Step 1) Go to a new Worksheet.

  1. Hold the control key and click on ‘State’ and ‘Sales’ present in the data pane.

Tableau Filled Maps

Step 2) In the next window,

  1. Click on the ‘Show Me’ option present in the top right corner of the worksheet.
  2. Select the ‘Filled Map’ icon in the list, as shown in the image.

Tableau Filled Maps

It creates a filled map, as shown below. The map’s color shows the sales of that particular USA state. The darker the color of the specific state, the larger the sales number, and vice versa.

Tableau Filled Maps

Editing Location using Tableau Mapping

You can see that in the above examples, the map was created by longitude and latitude coordinates generated in Tableau.

Depending upon its geography name, the location information is automatically generated in Tableau.

Note: Sometimes, you must edit the location to show the map based on its latitude and longitude details.

Here are steps to edit the location in Maps:

Step 1) Import the dataset “house_Prices.csv” into Tableau.

Note: This data set consists of location details of houses in the USA. In the data set, ‘Id’ is the primary key. The latitude and longitude can be plotted for each id to show the location of all houses.

Step 2) Go to a Worksheet.

  1. Right, click on ‘Long’ present in the measures pane.
  2. Select the ‘Geographic Role’ present on the list.
  3. Click on the ‘Longitude’ option available in the data set. This step is used to allocate the geographic role to the selected column.

Tableau Filled Maps

Step 3) In the next window,

  1. Drag ‘Long’ into Columns.
  2. Drag ‘Lat’ into Rows.
  3. Drag ‘Id’ into the detail icon present in the Marks card.

Tableau Filled Maps

Step 4) It creates a Map based on the given latitude and longitude details, as shown below. It shows each house present in the data set.

Tableau Filled Maps