Frequently asked question

Why does the ArcGIS Business Analyst web app return invalid geocoding results for some ZIP code areas?

Last Published: May 6, 2021


In some instances, attempting to geocode in the ArcGIS Business Analyst web app by importing an Excel file with ZIP codes returns invalid results.


Although searching for the ZIP codes may return valid results in other sources such as Google, the ZIP codes are not recognized as valid addresses by ArcGIS Business Analyst.

ZIP code areas are created for mail delivery purposes, but do not represent standard census geographic areas for data reporting. Although these ZIP codes are associated with a city or place according to USPS designation, they are not recognized areas in Esri datasets.

For instance, the ZIP code area '10981' does not exist in the 'United States ZIP Code Boundaries 2018' layer in ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World.


In ArcGIS Business Analyst, searching for '10981' returns 'Sugar Loaf, NY'. However, it is located in another ZIP code area '10918'.


In most cases, the invalid ZIP codes are part of a larger ZIP code area. Therefore, proceeding with the geocoding workflow by clicking Add matches to the map without fixing the invalid ZIP codes does not affect the analysis. ArcGIS Business Analyst generates a layer with all valid ZIP code areas from the imported Excel file.

Article ID:000024958

  • ArcGIS Business Analyst Web App

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