5 Useful Data Visualization Tools for Mapping

Datasets can appear as an alien language to many individuals within an organization, especially those outside the analytics team. This is where data visualization becomes crucial. Through data visualization, professionals can transform raw data into easily understandable insights.

However, just as alien as datasets may be, so can finding the right tools to create maps that will be useful to your team. Below, consider four tools that you might consider as a starting point.


Maptive is a powerful tool that empowers users to create custom maps using their data. The platform’s software builds upon the robust foundation of Google Maps, giving users access to many tools, such as Maptive’s map drawing tool. Whether you need to construct heat maps, visualize sales density, delineate territories, establish store locators, or optimize routes between multiple destinations, Maptive has you covered. Moreover, the platform also offers seamless sharing options, enabling you to collaborate effectively with colleagues or seamlessly integrate your interactive maps into websites.

Maptive caters to a diverse user base, ranging from small businesses to large enterprises, providing global mapping solutions that cater to various industries, including real estate, sales, and supply chain management.

Google My Maps

Google My Maps elevates your mapping experience beyond the usual Google.com/maps for directions. Picture digital pushpins on Google Maps, enriched with the capability to color-code and incorporate supplementary details upon clicking the pins. Whether you’re strategizing your upcoming vacation, plotting out your existing business hubs, or merely aiming to disseminate a roster of delivery destinations, this tool is your go-to choice.

Reviews also state that this user-friendly tool facilitates seamless information uploading and updating from Google Sheets and enables effortless map sharing with collaborators.

Excel 3D Maps

Excel 3D Maps, a feature fully integrated into Office 365, is another favorite, especially for those already familiar with the process to manage their mapping and geospatial data within Excel. It offers a relatively short learning curve, making it accessible for users of varying skill levels. With many options, you can effortlessly create various visualizations such as heat maps, bar charts, or time-based growth charts. These dynamic representations breathe life into your data, leaving a lasting impression.

Furthermore, there are advanced techniques to elevate your 3D Maps experience. For instance, you can enhance your maps by integrating shapefiles into three-digit zip code boundaries. While this may require more technical proficiency, you can acquire the necessary skills in 1-2 hours by utilizing online resources and experimenting with the tool. This extra step adds depth and precision to your mapping endeavors, allowing you to harness the full potential of Excel 3D Maps.


Consider you have a list of 25 addresses to visit and want to determine the most efficient route to cover them all. Enter OptiMap, your solution for this task. With OptiMap, the process is straightforward: input your addresses in bulk or manually, then click ‘Find!’ or ‘Calculate.’ Unlike Google Maps, which limits you to ten addresses, and other mapping engines like Bing and Mapquest, OptiMap allows you to optimize routes on a small scale with no cost involved. It’s a valuable tool for optimizing your travel plans efficiently.

Digit Zip Map

While it is relatively simple to create pivot tables or generate reports on the volume for each of these three-digit zip codes, visualizing the geographical boundaries or territory covered by a three-digit zip code can be challenging, given that it encompasses all zip codes sharing that same three-digit prefix.

Digit Zip Map is one of the tools available that solves this problem. By entering the three-digit zip code and clicking ‘Map 3 Digit Zip,’ you can instantly view the boundaries of the area it represents. Furthermore, the tool allows you to input multiple three-digit zip code zones for easy visualization.

Final Selection

The process of selecting the most suitable tools for your company’s needs involves a meticulous evaluation of various factors. By carefully assessing these factors, you can rank the available options and make a well-informed final selection that aligns seamlessly with your budget, overarching objectives, and specific requirements. 

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