2.10. Geo Charts & Google Maps in Looker Studio
Introducing Geo Charts & Google Maps
Let's talk about maps, specifically geo charts in Looker Studio. The legacy geo chart is basic but quick, clean, and sometimes exactly what you need. It shades regions based on the values you assign. Darker shades represent higher values.
With this chart, you can display data by city, country, or region. For instance, if you want to focus on one country or continent, you can select a specific zone like the United States.
Configuring Geo Charts
To configure these charts, you can choose the dimension (region, country, continent, or city) and the metric (e.g., number of users). The zoom area can be set to a country, continent, or sub-continent.
Google Maps Integration
For more advanced mapping, Looker Studio integrates with Google Maps, allowing you to overlay data on an interactive and customizable map. It's not as clean as a geo chart, but it's versatile. You can display data using bubbles, filled areas, heat maps, lines, or even custom polygons from Google Cloud BigQuery.
Interactive and Customizable Maps
The real magic of using Google Maps lies in its interactivity. You can zoom in and out, reset the view, and even customize the map's appearance with different themes or a custom JSON object.
Additionally, you can enable heat map functionality, which is particularly useful when dealing with large datasets. As you zoom in, the heat map becomes more granular, showing data in greater detail.
Responsive and Filterable Maps
Another great feature is the map's responsiveness to applied filters. When you filter data on the map, it automatically zooms in on the selected area. This makes it easy to focus on specific regions or locations.
Street View Integration
Surprisingly, Google Maps' Street View integration can be helpful in certain scenarios. For example, a client looking to open new stores might use Street View to explore potential locations and their surroundings.
Looker Studio's map integration offers a range of options, from basic geo charts to highly customizable and interactive maps using Google Maps. Choose the one that best fits your needs and make your data visually engaging.