For our Canadian organization, I would like to map out the Postal Codes for each sales rep on a map. I've so far used R to pretty good success, but it completely lacks the interactivity I need to make updates and analysis easy. I've toyed with RMaps and almost had a good solution there, but then my shapefile rendered WACKY.

I've recently tried out TileMill and figured "HERE IT IS!", but, alas, now loading Tiles into the map seems to be a MASSIVE headache. I can't seem to find a hosted tile server, and I cannot host my own PostGIS server on my work laptop (nevermind the fact that it seems crazy to do...)

What do people ACTUALLY use to map things out? It can be desktop or web based, but my worry about web based is that I'll be playing with very sensitive information and security would be a risk...

  • Is mapping postal codes to coordinates part of the question or do you already have coordinates in your data? – underdark Nov 4 '14 at 0:14
  • I have a list of postals paired with the reps they belong to. I would love to do more advanced things and show market sizes heat mapped onto the postal code and perhaps even put points where the long lat of each business is. I guess the term is choropleth? – wizard_draziw Nov 4 '14 at 0:21
  • So you don't have the coordinates of the postals? – underdark Nov 4 '14 at 0:48
  • No.. I have a shape file that has the postal code areas – wizard_draziw Nov 4 '14 at 1:48
  • Something like Tableau? I like R, but sometimes you need a different tool. – SlowLearner Nov 5 '14 at 0:18

That should be easy to do in QGIS. Load the postal Shapefile and join the sales rep data, then style based on sales rep. You can use the OpenLayers plugin to load background tiles (note though that these won't print).

  • So far this might work! Need to get permissions from IT to install. Will let you know – wizard_draziw Nov 5 '14 at 0:26
  • 1
    Ok got this bad boy (girl?) installed.. been toying with it for not even an hour and I'm already looking at a choropleth of gross sales by postal codes of the country overlayed on top of a google map.. AMAZING!!!! Thank you for the suggestion, and I can't believe this beautiful program is free. – wizard_draziw Nov 6 '14 at 22:54

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