As more organizations become aware of the benefits of geolocation, its use will inevitably become an industry standard. For many industries, such as retail and technology, the shift has already happened.
That being the case, we’ve put together a list of 10 geolocation terms you should know as your organization begins to evaluate, implement and expand its use of geolocation technology.
10 Geolocation Terms You Should Know
- Demographics: Refers to the study of a population based on social and economic factors, such as education level, income level, race, etc. Companies can use demographic data to better understand market potential, target the right audience, and evaluate ideal locations for offices, distribution centers, and franchise locations. Adding demographic data to a map can give businesses insightful data to make more informed decisions.
- Geolocation: The process of identifying the location of a person or device by means of digital information processed via the Internet. As an example, Google Maps uses your mobile device and geolocation to help you navigate to your destination.
- GeoAnalytics: GeoAnalytics brings together geography and traditional analytics to provide location-based metrics for your data. You can visualize trends geographically, such as identifying cities or counties of financial growth, concentrations of accounts by revenue and products sold by location.
- GeoShape: A shape generated on a map based on a pre-defined data sets such as countries, postal codes, counties or cities. A geoshape can also be a shape based on boundaries the user defines by drawing directly on the map. Many sales managers use geoshapes to manage and assign sales territories to their team.
- Heat Map: This map type is a visual representation of your data in concentrations instead of individual points or pins on a map. Areas of high concentration will appear red or “hot” while areas of low concentration will appear “cold” or blue.
- KML (Keyhole Markup Language) File: This is a geographic file that stores map pins, associated data, and shapes. Typically, they are viewed in Google Earth or similar applications. As an example, you can obtain a KML file which outlines areas of drought from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and map your records against areas of heavy or low drought.
- Map Layer: A set of data or information you can overlay on a map. Ideally, you’d want a solution that allows you to add multiple layers of data to the map at once. For example, you may want to view accounts by industry with an added map layer containing leads by industry. Solutions that allow you toggle your layers of data on and off will also give you the ability to visualize your data in different perspectives.
- Map Marker or Map Pin: An image that represents a record or place on the map. Depending on the solution, markers can be customized by color, icon, or changed to a custom graphic.
- Route: A path generated between two or more destinations. Tools like Geopointe use geolocation to generate routes and help users navigate between destinations. Optimizing a route re-organizes the order of the stops to the most optimal manner.
- Thematic Map: A map that aggregates metrics (record count, currency fields, percentages, and other numbers) based on a data set and displays them on a color range scale by geographic boundaries. Color-coding a country by revenue would be a thematic map layer.
These are just a few of the terms we think are important to know as you dive into geolocation for business. If you’re interested in seeing a larger list of geolocation terms, feel free to visit our Geopointe Terms and Functions page.