New Location Tools - Best Practices

We are excited to announce the ENVISION release of new location tools. The new capabilities allow you to:

  • Easily access location insights faster through improved importing, filtering, editing, reporting and mapping
  • Explore areas of interest on a map using your locations
  • Add new locations and see how they perform using your key variables
  • Evaluate prospective sites by clicking directly from the map to run dashboards or QuickStats reports
  • Import large lists of locations with up to 50 location characteristics

Users are able to organize their location lists, make use of many more location attributes, and be able to make use of new mapping functionality including the ability to run quick reports from the map itself.

We want to ensure you have all the information you need to make full use of these enhancements, starting with best practices for enhancing your location files and importing them into ENVISION.

Enhancing Location Files
To date, user-uploaded locations could be used to plot on maps, and a specific field could be referenced to create specific map layers. With the new location tools, users will be able to upload up to 50 different location attributes. All attributes can be queried for both data management and mapping purposes.

Please refer to the best practices for enhancing location files below:

  • Always include a location name
  • Address details or latitude/longitude coordinates are required for geocoding
  • Include location attributes that are important across your organization; for example
    • Main Intersection
    • Territory ID (e.g. 7865)
    • Territory name (e.g. York East Region)
    • Size of location (e.g. gross leasable area, small-medium-large)
    • Location sales (e.g. 570000 or categories of sales)
    • Number of employees (e.g. 234 or categories of employees)
    • Number of parking spaces (e.g. 34 or categories of parking spaces)
    • Location type (e.g. superstore)
    • Location format (e.g. mall, stand-alone)
    • URL to location streetview
    • URL to website
    • URL to information
    • Open date (e.g. 1969-09-30*)
    • Closed date (e.g. 2006-02-14*)
    • Hours of operation (e.g. M-F 9-4)
    • Miscellaneous location flags (e.g. drive-thru, departments, full/limited service)
    • Trade Area Sizes (e.g. 5)
    • Manager (e.g. John Smith)
    • Phone Number (e.g. 647-878-9876)
    • Last Reno Date (e.g. 1999-09-30*)
    • Main Anchor
    • Lease Renewal Date (e.g. 2020-09-26*)
    • Density Code

*[YYYY-MM-DD format]

Importing Location Files
With the release of our new location tools, the process of uploading locations will remain largely unchanged from the user perspective. We are introducing additional system messages that will identify any file content unsuitable for upload. For example, if a user attempts to upload a file with headers containing symbols, the system message will notify the user of this issue before attempting to upload so edits to the file can be made.

Please refer to the best practices for location upload below:

  • The file is less than 100mbs
  • The file contains column header (field) names, which are free of symbols, accents, punctuation (!@#$%^,&*) and leading or trailing spaces
    • Note: to improve file and header name readability, we recommend using: 
      • Single spaces
      • Single hyphens
      • Single dashes
      • Single underscores
  • Field names are unique
  • Field names are descriptive
  • File name and field name can not exceed 50 characters
  • Regular text, i.e. no formatting or accounting symbols on dollar values
  • No blank row after your header row, i.e. the first row of data should always be populated with data in each column
  • Always include a single hyphen for addresses with unit/suite numbers, do not use any other symbol, e.g. 770‐340 12 Ave SW
  • The file must be in a format appropriate for geocoding in ENVISION:
    • *.YXDB format is ideal due to its small size
    • *.CSV and .XLSX are also good options, but be sure to remove formatting from .XLSX files 
  • Consider if the file contains a unique identifier (always double-check IDs for uniqueness) and if not, what combination of fields (i.e. id, name, address) makes each record unique.
  • Sort and filter the file to remove any null/erroneous records
  • Field types for additional fields include: Text, Numeric, Email, URL, Date (YYYY-MM-DD), Categorical
  • Proper Case is ideal
  • Always spell check

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