Amazon UPC Codes

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Anyone who wants to sell a new product on Amazon needs a unique product code.  Our detailed instructions below will quickly get you up to speed with how Amazon UPC codes work.  Ready to buy an Amazon UPC code now? Simply click Buy Now below:

Why do you need UPC Codes for Amazon?

If you’re looking to list a new product on Amazon and you need a UPC/EAN code, you’ve come to the right place.  All of our codes are from the GS1, and are fully compliant with Amazon. UPC codes are used by Amazon to identify products in their database, and if you are adding a new unique listing, you need a unique UPC code.  Remember that each unique item needs a unique UPC, for example:
– If you’re selling T-Shirts, each unique Color will need a unique UPC.  If you have 20 Black, 20 White, and 20 Green for sale, you’ll need 3 unique UPC codes, 1 for each unique Color.

Amazon requires a universal product code in order to prevent duplicate products being on different listings and to prevent counterfeit items from being sold on their platform.  They serve an important role in maintaining and tracking inventory across millions of products.

All of the codes we sell at UPCs.com will work on Amazon, guaranteed! Glad to help solve any issues that may arise – we’ve helped thousands of businesses sell on Amazon successfully.
Note: it is always best practice to setup your listing/product info on Amazon prior to labeling your products.

What are UPC Barcodes?

You’ve probably heard of UPC, GTIN, FNSKU, barcodes, and other terms.  It can be confusing what it all means.  Below is a quick summary of what each one is and how they relate to each other:

  • UPC stands for Universal Product Code and is a unique identifier for physical products, and contains 12 digits.  The first 5 digits of the 12 digit code are called the prefix.
  • Barcode is a digital representation of a UPC or EAN code. They typically consist of two parts – a scannable barcode and the corresponding UPC underneath.  Barcodes can be generated easily once you have your UPC.
  • GTIN stands for Global Trade Item Number is the number that identifies individual products, it is the same as a UPC or EAN and GTINs include the family of GS1 item numbers (UPC-A, ITF-14, UPC, EAN).  It was named by the GS1.
  • FNSKU stands for Fulfillment Network Stock Keeping Unit and is used at Amazon to track specific products.  For example, a UPC identifies a Large Red T-Shirt, but if there is 1 used and 1 new, each will have a unique FNSKU even though the UPC is the same.  A SKU (stock keeping unit) is a common term used by merchants to refer to the number of unique items they have for sale.
  • ASIN stands for Amazon Standard Identification Number, and is 10 character alphanumerica unique identifer for Amazon to distinguish each item from one another.  It is typically at the end of every Amazon URL for a listing.  For example, amazon.com/Cards-Against-Humanity-LLC-CAHUS/dp/B004S8F7QM, the ASIN is B004S8F7QM.
  • ISBN stands for International Standard Book Number, and is a unique product identifier used specifically for books and other forms of published writing.
  • EAN stands for European Article number or International Article Number is a type of product identifier used specifically for products for the European marketplace (though otherwise similar to a UPC).  It contains 13 digits, while a UPC contains 12 digits.

Each of these are worth knowing as you begin to sell as they are used quite commonly and many will be required when creating your listings on Amazon.

What Is a Valid UPC?

There is a lot of discussion around Amazon UPCs and GTINs, and rightfully so.  Amazon has specific rules in place to ensure there aren’t counterfeit products being sold, and to prevent people from creating duplicate listings.  Considering that Amazon has 3 billion products across 11 marketplaces around the world, it is vital they have a strict system of what is allowed and how it is organized.  We’ve helped Amazon sellers successfully list on Amazon for nearly 15 years, and likely know more about their policies and rules than anyone, as we assist sellers each day with it.

Many of the errors that come up when creating a listing aren’t UPC-related, though it is easy to assume so.  At the end of this article you will see the most common errors and how we suggest you deal with them.  Note the the errors listed happen equally to both codes purchased from the GS1, and codes purchased directly from UPCs.com.  All of the codes sold at UPCs.com are from the GS1 but do not have renewal fees and are significantly cheaper (see Settlement). In short, all of the UPCs we sell at UPCs.com are valid for Amazon and are the cheapest and quickest way to list a new product on Amazon.  All of our codes are from the GS1 and follow all of the GS1 guidelines. From Amazon’s official policy:

We verify the authenticity of product UPCs by checking the GS1 database. UPCs that do not match the information provided by GS1 will be considered invalid. We recommend obtaining your UPCs directly from GS1 (and not from other third parties selling UPC licenses) to ensure the appropriate information is reflected in the GS1 database.

All invalid product UPC listings will be removed and may result in your ASIN creation or selling privileges being temporarily or permanently removed.

They implemented this policy due to many shady sellers stealing company prefixes and selling used codes, or selling codes that weren’t validated at the GS1 (that you could lookup). They’ve also built out the Amazon Brand Registry program which helps significantly with protecting Brand owners and preventing counterfeit products.  The GS1 simply issues prefixes to companies, it is not a central database of product information,  Referring to the policy above, they want to ensure every UPC comes from the GS1.  All of the codes we sell at UPCs.com are from the GS1.

With this said, you DO NOT need to own a prefix from the GS1 to list on Amazon.  If you’re buying legitimate GS1 codes from UPCs.com, the codes will work fine.  Owning a GS1 prefix is not required at 95% of retailers and involves a hefty upfront fee, as well as yearly renewal fees (see GS1/UCC settlement that the GS1 lost in 2002).

To summarize, all of the codes sold at UPCs.com will work on Amazon, and if you encounter any errors, please see our Common Erros section below.  If you still need assistance, feel free to contact us, we’re here to help.

Is a UPC required on Amazon?

Yes, in order to create a new product listing, a unique product identifier is requires, whether it be a UPC, EAN, another GTIN.  Creating a list only takes a few minutes and 1 unique UPC costs only $10 at UPCs.com.  You can use it immediately after checkout and you can have you listing active in minutes.

In rare cases, you can apply for a GTIN exemption.  This is done if you’re selling a white-label product that does not have a GTIN, or if you want to sell a bundle that is more generic.  It is also used if you have Brand Registry and don’t require a GTIN. In rare cases, we will suggest applying for a GTIN exemption, but the vast majority of the time, purchase a UPC and proceed via our instructions below.

How to List a Product on Amazon

To start using the UPC code(s) you purchased, you’ll need an Amazon Merchant account that enables you to add new products to the Amazon catalog (a Pro Seller account).  Once you login to your account, click on the Catalog tab at the top left navigation, click “Add a Product“, scroll down a bit to the “List a new product” section and then click on the “I’m adding a product not sold on Amazon” link:

After clicking that page, you’ll be taken to a page to select the category of your product, which you will choose depending on the product you’re selling.  You can either search for a category or browse for a category:

Once your category is selected, you’ll be brought to a page that will ask for your Product Name, Brand Name, etc.  This is the “Product Identity” tab.  At the bottom of the tab is a required field called the “External Product ID”, which is where you’ll need the UPC/EAN code that you purchase from us – you’ll want to paste it there and choose UPC from the dropdown:

You’ll want to go through all of the tabs and fill in the required information on each tab, as well as any other information you can provide.  Note that you can save the changes and later go back and edit them once all the required fields are filled in.  Note: Make sure you filled in the required information on ALL tabs, otherwise you can’t submit the listing.

That’s all you need to do to list a new product on Amazon! If you want to list more unique items, you’ll need more unique UPC codes.  We offer discounts for larger quantities.  Note that each UPC can only be used for 1 unique product.  Once you’ve used the UPC it cannot be used for another product since each UPC is unique.

Note that when you update the listing, it can take up to 15 minutes for the changes to save and for your listing to become active/updated.

Also note that if Amazon isn’t accepting the UPC code, please refer to the common questions section below.

Are you looking to buy a UPC for Amazon?

To buy your UPC code(s) now, click on the button below, checkout takes 1 minute and you can use the purchased code(s) immediately.  If you want buy codes in bulk, simply click Buy Now, then update the cart with your desired quantity:

If you experience any issues, we’re here to help.  Our FAQ has the most common questions, and below are Amazon specific errors that may arise.

Common Questions:

— “You are using UPCs, EANs, ISBNs, ASINs, or JAN codes that do not match the products you are trying to list.”

This error typically happens on Amazon if you’re listing a Brand that already has UPCs and Amazon is restricting the Brand from adding more UPCs (to prevent duplicate listings).   Or it is caused by listing a product that is already on Amazon (and has a similar Product Title).  If you get this error, please visit the page below:

Click >> You are using UPCs, EANs, ISBNs, ASINs, or JAN codes that do not match the products you are trying to list.

— Receiving some error on Amazon and Amazon is requesting GS1 information, or wants Proof of Affiliation

The first step in solving this is to identify the exact error you’re getting when listing.  When you follow the instructions on this page, your listing should go live successfully.  If it doesn’t, please send the exact error and/or screenshot to us and we’ll be glad to help.  Amazon support often offers contradictory advice (where one representative will suggest one thing while another person will say something different).  We recommend sending the exact error to us so we can better suggest what to do.  Most often, the issue is simple a Branding issue, or an issue with the way you entered the Product ID.

Note that Amazon often sends template replies that aren’t useful, so when you contact us, please follow our advice carefully as we have dealt with these issues many times and will gladly help you resolve them.

See: Common Amazon Errors

If you have other questions, please visit our FAQ page which answers the most common issues.  Reach out to us if you can’t find your answer, we’re glad to help.

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