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Smart Map Search
New Esri Business Analyst Online decision support tool

Smart Map Search
Smart Map Search displays the locations that meet all the selected criteria on one map.

This article as a PDF .

Decisions are only as good as the information that goes into them. The new Smart Map Search tool in Esri Business Analyst Online (BAO) guides users to the best conclusions using new data and producing custom PDF maps.

Smart Map Search guides users through a three-step site selection workflow:

  1. Select as many as five critical demographic, consumer, or business criteria (e.g., per capita income, median age).
  2. Select the level of geography that will be used by Smart Map Search (e.g., states, counties, ZIP Codes, or census tracts).
  3. Set the range of values for each selected criterion (e.g., per capita income greater than $40,000 or median age greater than 35). Smart Map Search then displays all the areas that meet all selected criteria on the map. A table of the results is generated showing how each geographic area identified in the results ranks for the individual criterion selected. This table can be exported to Microsoft Excel.

This tool makes the decision-making process much more efficient by performing analyses of all criteria and mapping all results at the same time rather than performing a series of separate analysis and mapping operations, one at a time. Users can quickly and easily identify the best locations. Franchisers can find the best site for their next store, city governments can efficiently identify vulnerable populations, and marketing professionals can determine how to target campaigns.

The abundance of current and relevant data in BAO is vital to obtain the best conclusions. In addition to the 2009 and 2014 demographic data updates, data in BAO has been expanded to include thousands of new variables, including Consumer Spending, Market Potential, and Retail MarketPlace data.

The new Market Potential data measures the probable demand for a product or service. For each variable, users can map the expected number of consumers, the percentage of consumers, or an index that compares consumer behavior in an area to the national average. For instance, someone looking to open a baby boutique can find areas with a higher than average demand for baby furniture.

the three-step workflow guides
The three-step workflow guides users to quickly and easily identify the areas that meet all their top criteria.

Consumer Spending averages and indexes, included for several spending categories, can be used to visually compare and rank geographic areas. For example, a marketing firm trying to determine where to target a campaign for a professional baseball team can look for areas with populations that have higher than average spending on sporting events.

Measures of supply and demand and the supply/demand gap can also be mapped using the new Retail MarketPlace data. This information illustrates where consumers' needs are being met and where new market opportunities exist. For example, a city government can assess the amount of customer leakage from area restaurants before deciding whether to allow a restaurant chain to open a location in the city.

Visualizing and sharing analysis is vital for effective decision making. BAO users can create custom PDF maps. In addition to the standard site maps, users can select any map created in the application—color-coded maps for any of the thousands of variables, Smart Map Search results, or Bing business search results—and create a custom PDF by simply clicking a button. Custom PDFs have the same look and feel as other BAO reports and can be easily integrated with other BAO analyses.

BAO is available at a variety of subscription levels from one-time-only reports to premium subscription packages and specialized development services. Nonsubscribers can purchase a day pass to take advantage of more than 50 preformatted reports and maps for 24 hours. For more information, visit

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