How to overlap Symbol Map on top of Filled Map in Tableau

This article explains how to create a Filled Map with Symbols in Tableau.


In Tableau, filled maps can be used to visually represent one measure and a symbol map can be used to visually represent, upto, 2 measures. Combining both a filled map and a symbol map in a single view can help in representing 3 measures and provides more insights into the available data.

When can we use both filled maps and symbol maps together?

Consider using a combination of a filled map and a symbol map when:

  1. There are at most 3 measures that needs to be visually represented
  2. Multiple insights need to be shown in a single view


Steps to create a combination of filled and symbol maps in Tableau:

The following steps demonstrate how a combination of filled and symbol maps can be created from the Sample – Superstore database, which comes along with Tableau.

Step 1:

First, we need to choose the dimensions and 2 of the measures that needs to be represented through the maps.

Step 1

Step 2:

From the ‘Show Me’ toolbar, select ‘Symbol Maps’ to first get the symbol map created for the selected 2 measures.

Step 2

Step 3:

Then, ctrl+click on the ‘Longitude (generated)’ and the ‘Latitude (generated)’ pills and drag and drop them on to the respective rows and columns shelf, so that we get four copies of the symbol map.

Step 3

Step 4:

Then, right click on the right pill in both the rows and columns shelf and select ‘Dual Axis’, to get a single map.

Step 4

Step 5:

Now, in the ‘Marks’ shelf, for the first ‘Longitude (generated)’ select ‘Filled Map’. Then, remove the 2 measures from the shelf and place the 3rd measure in the color shelf.

Step 5

Step 6:

For the second ‘Longitude (generated)’ select ‘Circle’ or ‘Shape’ and give any shape that you would like. Make sure that out of the 2 measures, one measure is placed on the color shelf and the other is placed on the size shelf.

Step 6

Step 7:

And the final combination of a filled map and a symbol map is ready. We can also change the color of the background as well as that of the shapes on the states.

Step 7




Related Posts


About the Author: Sheeraja Rajakrishnan

I'm Sheeraja, a business analyst from Chennai, India, expertised in developing Tableau based visualizations to aid in business analyses. I am a quick learner and can communicate ideas to others, effectively. I am always ready to learn new technologies and like to share my knowledge with others.

Leave a comment

You must be logged into post a comment.