What is it?
Geocoding is a process by which geographic coordinates (latitude and longitude) of a location are determined based on street address, zip code, or other location descriptors. These coordinates can be then be used by special software as mappoint or google spatial products to graphically represent geographic data points on a map allowing you to interact with them (query, align, lasso, etc.).
There are several benefits to having your data geocoded:
* Your database will be more accurate and reliable
* Your data will be possible to visualise with geospatial software directly from Office software and you can play with numbers
* Your address information will be scrubbed and standardized resulting in savings on mailings and fewer returns
* You will be able to optimize your sales territories based on accurate account locations within close proximity to each other
* And many others
If your data is not already geocoded you will still be able to use it in mapping programs however the placement of your data will be less accurate. Geocoding provides very specific positional information allowing your data to be precisely plotted on a map.
Today, many corporate data sources already contain this information. You may want to contact your IT department or the provider of your data to see if this information is currently available.
If it is not already part of your data or readily available from your data provider, you can have your data”geocoded”. This is an automatic process that appends the latitude, longitude and other geographic information to your data. Typically, before geocoding a data set, it have to be “scrub” or clean and standardize the address information to ensure its accuracy and consistency. This not only ensures that I get the best possible match from the national street level database but has the added benefit of providing you with a much cleaner data set when the process is complete. Address information is updated with correct ZIP Codes (and ZIP+4 where available), misspellings are corrected and standard USPS postal abbreviations are applied. If you use this data for mailing purposes, this can be a huge benefit since your mailings are much more likely to get to their intended recipients.
cost and timing
Prices of geocoding services are based on the number of records processed. There is a minimum processing fee of €50 per file or worksheet processed. To give you an idea on the costs of geocoding your data, refer to the following table:
Number of records processed – Cost per record –Maximum Total Cost
500-1,000 €0.08 €80
1,000-3,000 €0.07 €210
3,000-10,000 €0.06 €600
These costs include both the address scrubbing (cleaning and standardization) as well as the appending of the latitude and longitude information required for use in GIS software. For most businesses, this is a one time investment with the exception of periodic updates and additions to the data.
Most geocoding jobs can be completed in 3-5 business days. If your data set is particularly large or troublesome it may require more time. An estimate will be provided to you upon receipt of your data.
If you would like a quote for larger quantities of data or would like to have your data scrubbed and geocoded, contact me.