GTIN Codes

In the world of online retail, selling products on platforms like Amazon can be highly lucrative. However, to successfully list your products on Amazon, you need to understand the importance of GTIN codes. GTIN, which stands for Global Trade Item Number, is a unique identifier assigned to products to facilitate accurate and efficient product identification. In this article, we will delve into the details of GTIN codes and explain why they are crucial for selling on Amazon.

What is a GTIN code?

A GTIN code is a globally recognized and unique identifier used to distinguish products in the retail industry. It provides a standardized way to identify and track products across various distribution channels. The most common types of GTIN codes include UPC (Universal Product Code), EAN codes (European Article Number Codes), and ISBN (International Standard Book Number). Each type of GTIN code has a different structure and is used for specific product categories.

Importance of GTIN codes on Amazon

Amazon requires sellers to provide valid GTIN codes for most products listed on their platform. This requirement ensures that each product is correctly identified and classified, leading to better search results and a more organized marketplace. GTIN codes help Amazon match products to their existing catalog and enable customers to find products quickly and easily.

Moreover, GTIN codes enhance product visibility on Amazon and increase the chances of appearing in relevant search results. When customers search for a specific product, Amazon’s search algorithm prioritizes listings with valid GTIN codes, giving them a competitive advantage over listings without one.

Types of GTIN codes

As mentioned earlier, there are different types of GTIN codes. Let’s explore them in detail:

Universal Product Code (UPC): UPC codes are commonly used in North America. They consist of 12 digits and are primarily associated with retail products. If you plan to sell your products in the United States or Canada, you will need to buy UPC codes.

European Article Number (EAN): EAN codes are used globally, but they are particularly prevalent in Europe. They also consist of 12 digits, like UPC codes. If you plan to sell your products in European countries, an EAN code will be necessary.

International Standard Book Number (ISBN): ISBN codes are exclusively for books. They are 13 digits long and are used to identify each unique edition of a book. If you are selling books on Amazon, an ISBN code is required.

Obtaining GTIN codes

Now that you understand the significance of GTIN codes, let’s discuss how you can obtain them for your products.

  • Manufacturer-assigned GTIN: Many products already have GTIN codes assigned by the manufacturer. If you’re selling branded products, check with the manufacturer or the product packaging to find the GTIN code. These codes are typically valid for use on Amazon.
  • Purchase GTINs from GS1: If you’re selling products without manufacturer-assigned GTINs or private label products, you can acquire GTINs directly from GS1 (Global Standards One), the global organization responsible for managing GTIN codes. GS1 provides unique company prefixes that allow you to generate GTINs for your products. However, it’s important to note that purchasing GTINs from third-party sellers or unauthorized sources is against Amazon’s policy and may result in listing removal or other penalties.
  • Exemption for certain product categories: Some product categories on Amazon are exempt from providing GTIN codes. For example, handmade products, vintage items, and certain media categories may not require GTIN codes. Refer to Amazon’s guidelines or consult with Seller Support to determine if your product falls into an exempt category.

Guidelines for using GTIN codes on Amazon

When using GTIN codes on Amazon, it’s crucial to follow certain guidelines:

  • Accuracy: Ensure that the GTIN codes you provide are accurate and match the product you are listing. Any discrepancies may lead to listing removal or account suspension.
  • Legitimate GTINs: Use only legitimate and valid GTINs that are registered with GS1 or provided by the manufacturer. Avoid using duplicated, expired, or invalid GTINs.
  • Individual GTINs per product variation: If you offer product variations (e.g., different colors or sizes), assign a unique GTIN to each variation. This allows customers to find and select the specific variation they want.
  • Bundled products: In the case of bundled products, where multiple items are sold together as a single unit, a unique GTIN should be assigned to the bundle itself, separate from the GTINs of the individual items.

Verifying GTIN codes

To ensure the accuracy and legitimacy of GTIN codes, Amazon provides a GTIN exemption and verification tool. This tool allows sellers to check if their GTIN codes are valid and registered with GS1. It’s recommended to verify your GTIN codes before listing your products on Amazon to avoid any potential issues.

The Bottom Line

GTIN codes play a vital role in the world of e-commerce, particularly when it comes to selling on Amazon. Understanding the types of GTIN codes, obtaining them correctly, and adhering to Amazon’s guidelines will ensure that your products are accurately identified, boost your visibility on the platform, and provide a seamless shopping experience for customers. By incorporating GTIN codes effectively, you can enhance your chances of success as an Amazon seller.

By ashish

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