What is a Map?

A map is a visual representation of geographical data. There are many types of maps that help us better understand our world. Let’s go over the most popular types of maps:

  • Choropleth maps or heat maps
  • Icon or marker maps
  • Topographic maps
  • Cartograms
  • Subway maps

Types of Maps

Maps in Infogram

Choropleth maps

Choropleth maps use color or patterns to display numerical data for specific areas or regions. Choropleth maps can display population density, income, political boundaries and other information. 

chropleth maps

Icon or marker maps

Icon (marker) maps illustrate different topics by regions using relevant icons or dots. The icon (marker) size is directly proportional to your data. The higher the value, the bigger the icon. 

icon map examples

Other Maps

Topographic maps

Topographic maps show the shape of geographical surfaces using contour lines. They can visualize different types of landscape: mountains, vegetation, and elevation. 


Cartograms visualize statistical information about geographic areas. Cartograms distort the size of regions proportional to their data values. You can use cartograms to show travel time, population, GDP, and more.

Subway maps

Subway maps illustrate underground public transportation routes, stations, and platforms that are connected with straight and curved lines. 

Climate maps

Climate maps represent weather patterns based on geographic locations. They show temperature, rainfall, snowfall, wind and more. The colors of climate maps represent different climate zones.  

With Infogram map maker you have access to more than 550+ maps - perfect for visualizing any location. 

View More Map Examples

When to Use a Map 

Use a map when you have a story to tell based on geographic data. You can add a map to your next infographic, report, presentation, news article, or social media campaign. Maps are a good way to show country statistics, sales by region, voting results, weather updates, and more.

How to Create a Map with Infogram

  1. Join Infogram to make a map
  2. Choose a map type
  3. Upload or copy and paste your data
  4. Customize labels, colors, and tooltips
  5. Download your map or embed on your website

How to Make an Icon Map

Infogram maps let you place an icon or symbol anywhere in the world. You can change the default circle icon to any image from our large icon library. 

  1. Click on the map you’d like to edit
  2. Choose ‘Map properties
  3. Select ‘Icon map’ under ‘Map type
  4. Click ‘Select icon’ to search our icon library for the perfect image

create icon map

Make an Infogram Map Using Google Sheets

Infogram offers an integration with Google Sheets. You can create a map connected to live data that updates automatically based on changes to your spreadsheet.

  1. Choose a ‘Map Type
  2. Select ‘Edit data’ and click Google Drive green icon
  3. Connect to your Google account
  4. Select the file you want to use
  5. Customize map colors

Map Best Practices

  • Use simple outlines and avoid design distractions. Less is more
  • Select colors wisely. Use color or text to emphasize important data. For map color gradients we suggest you check out ColorBrewer
  • If you need to show regions with common data or patterns, we suggest you arrange them into groups, which is easy with an Infogram ‘Area map'

Watch our webinar: How to Make Maps Like an Expert

Build beautiful maps to share engaging content with your audience in new ways.


Make a Map