ZIP Code boundaries are the polygons that contain particular ZIP Codes. ZIP Code boundaries, as opposed to ZIP Code points, are helpful when identifying specific geographical regions, or setting up larger territories based on several ZIP Codes.
People are often surprised to learn that the US Postal Service (USPS) does not provide ZIP Code Boundaries. The USPS creates ZIP Codes, of course – but ZIP Code boundaries are only available through a third party.
The ZIP Code boundary for 94104 in San Francisco, CA.
ZIP Code boundaries are especially useful in the following four use cases…
1. Real Estate Online Search
When home buyers and renters want to narrow down their property search results in an online portal, filtering by ZIP Code is often the preferred method. A search by ZIP Code gets consumers to the right location fast.
Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries help users on Redfin.com to filter their property search by ZIP Code.
2. Direct Marketing
When companies want to deliver messaging to specific areas, ZIP Code boundaries are critical.
ZIP Code data is used by the direct marketer to send a mailer for skis to Flagstaff, AZ, not Phoenix, and a coupon for surfing lessons to Santa Barbara, CA, instead of Bakersfield. 5-digit ZIP Codes and ZIP+4 data give marketers the precision they need to target messaging at their most promising prospects.
3. Search/Local Search
Searches conducted by ZIP Code give users an additional way to narrow their results when looking for products and services in a certain area. A ZIP Code is probably the second most frequently used filter in online search, behind specific place-names.
4. Sales Territory Mapping
Sales managers can improve sales numbers by segmenting their territories by ZIP Code. For years, a variety of industries have relied on ZIP Code areas quilted together to form regions in which they assign a person or group to represent their business and sell their products.
Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries
Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries are the most trusted, current and reliable ZIP Code data on the market.
Maponics is such a reliable source of postal map data that USPS.com refers customers looking for postal map data directly to us. In fact, Maponics is the only postal map data provider listed on USPS.com as a resource for postal data, ZIP Code boundary maps, carrier route reports and other postal maps and reports.
Maponics is the only postal data provider listed by the USPS as a resource for postal data including ZIP Code boundary maps and carrier route reports.
To make our postal data even more meaningful, customers can perfectly sync Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries with lifestyle and behavioral analytics from our Context™ suite of products, including Context Demographics, Context PRIZM, Context Crime Scores and more.
Companies using Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries include high-profile brands such as Zillow, Keller Williams, Realtors Property Resource, Angie’s List and Lowe’s Companies.
To read more about Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries, download our product sheet.
Can a person’s ZIP Code indicate his or her demographic profile?
Increasingly, the answer is yes – especially if that person lives in a “Super ZIP.” Residents of Super ZIPs are among the most wealthy, well-educated groups in America, with a median household income of $120,000 and 70% of adults holding college degrees, according to the Washington Post.
More than one-third of Super ZIPs lie in the Washington, D.C. metro area, as the map below shows.
Yellow highlights indicate the nation’s Super ZIPs, most of which fall in the Boston-Washington corridor and are especially prevalent in the nation’s capital. Photo source: The Washington Post
The Changing Face of ZIP Codes and Neighborhoods
ZIP Codes and neighborhoods are increasingly either lower income or higher income, rather than somewhere in the middle – a change from a generation ago.
“People of widely different incomes and professions commonly lived close enough [in the 1970s] that they mingled at stores, sports arenas and school. In an era in which women had fewer educational and professional opportunities, lawyers married secretaries and doctors married nurses. Now, lawyers and doctors marry each other.” (“Washington: A World Apart,” The Washington Post)
In 1970, 65% of families resided in middle-income neighborhoods. In 2010, that figure had dropped to 42%.
Some sociologists claim that as neighborhoods become either affluent or low income, the wealthy are increasingly isolated from the problems of the working poor. Photo source: American Enterprise Institute
School Districts by ZIP Code
One result of socioeconomic stratification by ZIP Code is that more and more, better school districts and school attendance zones are clustered in wealthier ZIP Codes.
A study (based on Maponics school data) by the online real estate search engine Redfin showed that home prices in school attendance zones with top performing schools are often hundreds of thousands of dollars more expensive than homes that fall in school attendance zones with lower performing schools.
In some areas, it may be cheaper to send your child to private school than to find housing in a school district with better public schools, says a Brookings Institution study.
Learn More About the Demographics of ZIP Codes with Maponics Data
Maponics Context Demographics projected onto Maponics ZIP Code Boundaries reveal population statistics segmented by ZIP Code. Syncing these two Maponics datasets gives analysts meaningful insight into populations within a prescribed area: the median household size, median household income, ethnicity breakdown and other data points.
Context Demographics synced with School Boundaries offer additional information about the people within particular school districts and school attendance zones across America.
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