Get geographic location data

To insert geographic data into Excel, you first convert text into the Geography data type. Then you can use another column to extract certain details relative to that data type, like Total population, or Time zone.

Note: June 12, 2018: This data type is currently a beta feature, and only available to a portion of Office Insiders at this time. We'll continue to optimize this feature over the next several months. When it's ready, we'll release it to all Office Insiders, and Office 365 subscribers.

1. Type data, create a table

List of countries to be converted to Geographic data types

Type some geographic data into individual cells, such as country name, county, city, etc. Then select those cells and create an Excel table by clicking Insert > Table. If your data has column headers, select the My table has headers checkbox.

2. Select cells

Convert selected data to an Excel table

Now select the cells that contain the geographic data you entered.

3. Click Data > Geography

Data tab, Stocks and Geography buttons

On the Data tab, click Geography.

4. Icons appear

Selected items have been converted to Geographic data types

If Excel finds a match between the text in the cells and our online sources, it will convert the text to the Geography data type. You'll know they're converted if they have this icon: Geography data type icon .

5. Add a column

Add a column to add a Population record

Click the Add Column button Add Column button , and then click Population. If you don't see this button, make sure to follow step 1 and create an Excel table first.

6. Population appears

Population has been added as a column

Excel will extract the Population field from the cells with the Geography data type. Click the Add Column button again Add Column button to add other helpful fields like Time Zone, Unemployment Rate, Currency Code and so on.

Tips: 

  • To see all of the fields available for a selected geography, click the geography icon (  Geography data type icon ) or select the cell and press Ctrl+Shift+F2.

  • You can also write formulas that reference data types.

  • If you see Question mark icon instead of an icon, then Excel's having a hard time matching your text with data in our online sources. Correct any spelling mistakes and when you press Enter, Excel will do its best to find a match. Or, click Question mark icon and a Record selector pane will appear. Search for the data you need using a keyword or two, and then click Select.

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