About finding an address

You can load an address locator into ArcMap, then use it to find addresses. ArcGIS loads some locators for you by default, including the MGRS (Military Grid Reference System) locator and geocode services from ArcGIS Online. This allows you to begin geocoding right away without the need to create and configure an address locator yourself.


Although you don't need to add reference data to the ArcMap document to find addresses, doing so gives you a visual reference to help you evaluate the locations returned by the address locator.

The Geocoding toolbar in ArcMap provides a simple user interface to choose an address locator, find an address, and view the location on the map.

Geocoding toolbar with ArcGIS Online geocode services
Geocoding toolbar
If an address is not found, a ToolTip displays "Address not found". To review more details about how an address is or is not matched, use the Find dialog box instead since it displays more information about candidates that are found. With the Find dialog box, you can review multiple candidates and select the correct match. You can also modify the geocoding options to change the number of candidates that can be returned.

In addition to finding street addresses, such as 430 University Ave, or intersection addresses, such as S Cherry Ave & Wycliff Pl, you can find other types of locations. The following subsections introduce some of these location types and present other options as well.

Single-line input

An address locator created using the current ArcGIS release supports inputting an address in a single-line format as shown in the second screen shot of this topic (above). Single-line address inputs are accepted on the Geocoding toolbar and Find dialog box. Commas are optional for delimiting the fields regardless of whether you are using the toolbar or the Find dialog box.


When using an address locator that was created in a release prior to ArcGIS 10, address and zone fields need to be separated by commas. Moreover, you won't be able to make single-line entries in the Find dialog box.

Finding locations by intersection addresses

You can search for a street intersection when the locator you're searching against contains streets as line features. The two street names that you enter must be separated by an intersection connector, such as an ampersand (&) or at sign (@), as specified on the Address Locator Properties dialog box.

Intersection address in Geocoding toolbar

Learn more about setting intersection connectors

Learn more about searching for a street intersection

Spatial offset

You can add a spatial offset to an address if you want to display the point location in an offset distance and direction from the found location of an address. The spatial offset can be presented as [distance] [units] [direction] from [address], for example, 500 feet NW from 150 Linden Ave NE, where 150 Linden Ave NE is the address. You can use many other units and direction values than those in the example. Also, instead of specifying a direction, you can enter a bearing degree, for example, 200 yards bearing 70 from [address].

Find addresses with spatial offset

Finding locations by latitude and longitude coordinates

Instead of entering an address, you can enter latitude and longitude coordinates to find a location.

Entering coordinate values in the Geocoding toolbar
The latitude and longitude coordinates can be presented in one of the following formats:

Finding locations by MGRS coordinates

The MGRS locator enables you to enter a location based on the Military Grid Reference System (MGRS). It is available in ArcMap by default.

MGRS locator in Geocoding toolbar
The MGRS coordinates can be presented in one of the following formats:

Learn more about using MGRS in ArcGIS

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