Specify the location type


You need the following account and license types to use this workflow:

  • Microsoft license—You need a Microsoft 365 license, role Contributor or higher, to specify the location type for ArcGIS for Microsoft 365 data.
  • ArcGIS account type—Standard users can perform the basic functions of this workflow; you do not need to sign in.

You can specify the data location type.

See Data and geocoding to learn more about geocoding.

ArcGIS for Power BI uses geoenabling technology to accurately position location data on the map and automatically render items as points or boundaries by default based on the type of data being added. For example, a latitude-longitude coordinate is rendered as a point on the map, and a state or province is rendered as a boundary, or polygon. You can change the way locations are rendered by specifying the location type.


Correctly prepare the data by establishing the location type before you add it to the map; this improves performance and results.

To specify a location type, complete the following steps:

  1. Open a map-enabled report or create a new map.
  2. From the Layers list, click the data layer for which you want to specify the location type.
  3. Click the Layer options button Layer options and choose Location type.

    You can only specify one location type for a data layer created from your Power BI data.

    The Location type pane appears.

  4. Choose Points or Boundaries.

    In some cases, ZIP Codes may be associated with nonresidential post office boxes, which do not have boundaries associated with them and the GeoEnrichment Service does not maintain demographic data for this type of location. If you are creating a map using nonresidential ZIP Codes, use the Points location type. Using the Boundaries location type will result in errors during geocoding.

  5. Choose One country or Many countries depending on where the data is located.
  6. Choose the appropriate country or countries from the drop-down menu.
  7. If you chose to represent locations as boundaries, do the following:
    1. Choose the Location type setting to use as you render locations on the map. Different options are available depending on the country.

      ArcGIS for Power BI uses different methods to find locations depending on your organization and settings that are determined by your account administrator.

    2. Specify the method used to match locations:
      • Exact match—Use this option to locate boundaries defined by codes or abbreviations, or when you are confident that the spelling in the dataset is correct and matches that used by Esri data services.
      • Closest match—Use this option if you are not sure of the exact spelling used by Esri data services, if the dataset may contain spelling errors, or if an exact match search doesn't add all the data to the map.
  8. Click OK.