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Alteryx Designer Desktop Knowledge Base

Definitive answers from Designer Desktop experts.

How To: Create an Indexed Map


If you are reading this, you are probably interested in maps. If you are interested in maps and of a certain age, then you have probably used a Rand McNally Road Atlas in the past. Waaay back in the past. In any case, the Road Atlas has a nice featurewhere you can look up a city within a sorted list, find it's assigned index value (for example B7), and then easily locate the city by using the x,ygrid that was overlaid on the map. In Alteryx, it's possible to create a similar indexed map using several spatial and reporting tools. Below is one example of creating an Indexed Map.

In this example, we will be creating an index for a sample store file, which will allow the user to easily locate a specific store by narrowing the search down to a 10 x 10-mile grid section. Attached is the workflow.


  1. Create the grids to encompass the stores

    • Using the Make Grid Tool, input '10' for Grid size and select the option 'Generate Single Grid for Entire Layer'.


  2. Prep the grid values so they are in more of a user-friendly format

    • Using a Formula Tool and the SUBSTRING function, extract just the grid values.
    • Parse out the X and Y values.
    • Using another Formula Tool, add 1 to all grid values so that you don't have a grid of 0_0.
    • Using the Find Replace Tool, convert the Y values to letters so you get a label such as A1 as opposed to 1_1.
    • Finally, append the X and Y values together to get a single grid alphanumeric value.


  3. Create the map and assign a grid section to each store

    • Using the Report Map Tool, create the map of your stores and overlay the grid.
    • Using the Spatial Match Tool, match the grid section to each store. In this example, I used the Store for the Target and the Grid for the Universe and matched where the Store touches or intersects with the Grid. Important: Without using the Touches option, the first store would be left out as it falls directly on the line of the grid.
    • I then sorted the stores by store number and created a table of the stores.

  4. Create the Final Report

This particular workflow creates a report like this:


If you have a use case where you need multiple columns for your list of geographies, please see the Community article on Spanning Data Across Columns.

I hope you will find this useful. Please feel free to post any comments or questions.

Alteryx Alumni (Retired)

Yep, brought back memories of the Rand McNalley Atlas...but it wasn't THAT far "Waaayback in the past". ;-)


Nice workflow and example!