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Import a Shapefile into Microsoft Power BI Desktop

Spotzi's intuitive geomarketing platform provides users with all the necessary tools and data for finding your best-fit customers. Spotzi Premium Plans allow you to import Power BI shapefiles into our platform, as well as export any shapefiles for personal use within Power BI.

What format does Power BI support?

Power BI supports TopoJSON files — meaning the data you've exported from Spotzi must be of this file format in order to be accepted by the Power BI platform. Unfortunately, a direct export to TopoJSON is not an option as our platform only supports geoJSON exports. This is, however, an easy fix; Please watch the video or written instructions below to learn more about importing Shapefiles into Power BI.

How to import shapefiles into Power BI? [Guide]

Step-by-Step Guide

First, please export your data as a zipped shapefile format. The example features a sample of the 2-digit postal codes across the Netherlands.

Next, visit Mapshaper.org. This link allows you to upload your data via drag and drop or selection. Once your data has been imported, you can choose to export this same data — this time as a TopoJSON file. Simply download your data using this new format and your file is ready to go.

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You can now upload your TopoJSON into Power BI. Begin by changing the settings of the Power BI program to allow the "Shape Map" functionality. You can do this by clicking through:

File > Options and Settings > Options > Preview Features > Select the “Shape Map” checkbox.

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Please restart your Power BI program in order to ensure that your new settings have been executed.

You can now access the "Shape Map" functionality and should see an empty map as a default. To upload your TopoJSON file click GET DATA, select JSON and upload the TOPOJSON file you'd like to work with. Once uploaded, press +ADD MAP (under the SHAPE header).

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Congratulations! You have successfully imported your map into Power BI.

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