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If you’re looking to start selling on Amazon then you need to learn about Amazon UPC codes.
Online sellers need a UPC code because they use it in the product ID section of their new Amazon listing. Without a code in the Amazon Product ID section you can’t list your product.
Amazon’s only requirement is that you need to buy a “GS1 UPC code” to finalize your product listing and start selling on Amazon. Remember, you cannot create your own Amazon UPC code.
Keep reading below to learn the basics of buying a UPC code for Amazon and where to get them at a discount.
A UPC (Universal Product Code) or “Barcode” is a 12 digit code that is unique to the product being sold in a store or online. It’s used to scan products at the point of sale and follows the GS1 specifications. GS1 is a global standard for barcodes and if your code doesn’t follow the GS1 standard then it’s not legitimate and can violate Amazon’s terms of service.
You need a UPC code for Amazon to fill out the product ID field when listing a new product to sell. In the “Product ID” section you need to select “UPC” from the drop-down menu. It’s not possible to list a product for sale on Amazon without the UPC code.
Another name for UPC code is “Barcode”. So, if your product already has one because you’re re-selling something then you can enter that code in the product ID area.
UPCs and EANs are the most common Amazon product ID’s.
The United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and other Western European countries commonly use UPC’s and EAN’s
People commonly purchase cheap UPC codes from shady sellers on eBay. Most likely they’re recycled UPC codes. Amazon will think your products are fraudulent and shut down your account.
Let’s define some common terms you will see in the Amazon product ID section of your product listing.
Stands for Amazon Standard Identification Number. This 10-character alphanumeric unique catalog number is assigned by Amazon but isn’t generated until you’ve actually listed your product already.
When you create a new product listing using a UPC code, Amazon will then assign your listing an ASIN number. This is how Amazon’s system keeps it straight when multiple Sellers are listing offers for the same product.
(Not Important for Beginners)
When you create your own brand on Amazon they will give your brand a unique identifier for you to list your products. Amazon will assign that number to your products.
You can only use this ID when adding a new product that is part of your approved registered Brand list.
You can save money and completely eliminate having to buy UPC codes for Amazon by registering your brand on Amazon. Consider it after making your initial sales.
GTINs are a part of codes you might use, such as UPCs or EANs. They’re 14 digit codes used to identify items, product, or services. Think of it as an umbrella that holds the entire family of GS1 barcodes, including the UPC codes we’re going to use.
To make things simple, new product listings will require UPC codes. Keep that as standard practice.
Here are the most common questions we get:
You only need to buy one UPC code for one new product listing on Amazon. One UPC code for the “Tee Shirt” no matter how many “Tee Shirts” you’re selling.
Yes, in creating a new product listing the product ID is required. Select UPC from the drop-down and enter the whole number from left to right.
If it’s the same product then yes they are the same. You can use the same UPC code for any number of the same product. If the product has already been listed then simply change the amount of products you have for sale.
If the item is already on Amazon and it is the exact same item, you should piggyback on that detail page rather than start a new page. You wouldn’t need to purchase a UPC code if the item is already on the site. Select ASIN on the product ID dropdown and enter the active listing ASIN number.
You can use 1 single UPC code to list as many of the same item as you want. If you’re selling 100 hair brushes when creating the product listing you only need 1 UPC code for all 100 hair brushes. The UPC code does not have to be on your products.
When you create your product listing, Amazon gives you a unique identifier for each item and that would need to be placed on your product. The UPC code is only for product listing purposes.
GS1 is an organization that developed the standard barcode for business communication. When you buy a GS1 barcode you are buying a unique identifier that can be traced back only to your business and product. Amazon only accepts barcodes that meet the GS1 Standards.
You only need UPC codes to initially list your product on Amazon. They do not need to physically be on each product and you only need one UPC code for one variation of a product.
You’re not going to need UPC codes when you’re selling via retail arbitrage. The products come with their own barcodes and you can use that to list the product.
Remember that at the end of the day you’re trying to sell on Amazon, you’re not a UPC code or logistics expert. Going deeper into the UPC code discussion is not necessary and this is only a small portion of ranking your products and starting an Amazon business.
So, the idea behind this post is to give you a quick primer into understanding what you need to do because people get confused about the technical side of starting an Amazon business and never know where or how to start researching products.