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Excel 2020: Build a Pivot Table on a Map Using 3D Maps

November 16, 2020 - by Bill Jelen

Build a Pivot Table on a Map Using 3D Maps. Photo Credit: Kyle Glenn at

3D Maps (née Power Map) is available in the Office 365 versions of Excel 2013 and all versions of Excel 2016. Using 3D Maps, you can build a pivot table on a map. You can fly through your data and animate the data over time.

3D Maps lets you see five dimensions: latitude, longitude, color, height, and time. Using it is a fascinating way to visualize large data sets.

3D Maps can work with simple one-sheet data sets or with multiple tables added to the Data Model. Select the data. On the Insert tab, choose 3D Map. (The icon is located to the right of the Charts group.) If you have Excel 2013 you might have to download Power Map Preview from Microsoft to use the feature.

3D Map is a new icon to the right of the Charts group on the Insert tab.

Next, you need to choose which fields are your geography fields. This could be Country, State, County, Zip Code, or even individual street addresses.

You can choose to map by Street Address, Zip Code, State, Country, and so on.

You are given a list of the fields in your data set and drop zones named Height, Category, and Time.

The Height drop zone is sales amount. The Category drop zone contains housing allotment. The Time drop zone contains Sales Date.

Hover over any point on the map to get details such as last sale date and amount.

In the default state of 3D Maps, each data point occupies about one city block. To be able to plot many houses on a street, select the Gear Wheel, Layer Options and change the thickness of the point to 10%.

To get the satellite imagery, open the Themes dropdown and use the second theme.

3D Maps provides a completely new way to look at your data. It is hard to believe that this is Excel.

Here is a map of Merritt Island, Florida. The various colors are different housing allotments. Each colored dot on the map is a house with a dock, either on a river or one of many canals dredged out in the 1960s and 1970s.

14 housing allotments are plotted in different colors. In this view from directly overhead, you can't really make out the height of the columns. This view is from March 2013.

Using the time slider, you can go back in time to any point. Here is the same area at the time when NASA landed the first man on the Moon. The NASA engineers had just started building waterfront homes here, a few miles south of Kennedy Space Center.

Drag the time scrubber back to December 1969 and only 2 of the housing allotments are fully built out. A few scattered houses in newer allotments are just starting to appear.

Use the wheel mouse to scroll in. You can actually see individual streets, canals, and driveways.

Zooming in, you can start to make out individual houses and see some of the sales price height.

Hold down the Alt key and drag sideways to rotate the map. Hold down the Alt key and drag up to tip the map so your view is closer to the ground.

Tip the viewing angle and you can see low versus high priced houses.

Thanks to Igor Peev and Scott Ruble at Microsoft for this cool new feature.

Title Photo: Kyle Glenn at

This article is an excerpt from MrExcel 2020 - Seeing Excel Clearly.

Bill Jelen is the author / co-author of
MrExcel 2020 - Seeing Excel Clearly

This is a 4th edition of MrExcel LX. Updates for 2020 include: Ask a question about your data, XLOOKUP, Power Query's Data Profiling tools, How Geography Data Types decide which Madison, A SEQUENCE example for descending 52 weeks, Exchange Rates support in Stock Data Types, How to collapse the Search box, How to leave effective feedback for Microsoft, How to post your worksheet to the MrExcel Board using XL2BB.