Barcodes are crucial for selling on Amazon as they help keep track of inventory easily and accurately. Amazon Product Barcodes make the selling process smoother by allowing quick scanning and identification of products, which speeds up shipping and handling.

For buyers, barcodes ensure that the products they purchase are genuine, which enhances their shopping experience. For sellers, they’re vital in managing inventory, preventing errors, and ensuring each item is accounted for and properly processed throughout Amazon’s vast logistics network. This system benefits both parties by ensuring efficiency and authenticity in every transaction.


Types of Amazon Product Barcodes

Amazon utilises various types of barcodes to manage its extensive product catalog efficiently, helping sellers list their items effectively and ensuring that buyers can easily find and purchase products. Understanding the different barcode types is essential for any seller on the platform.

  • Universal Product Code (UPC): UPCs are 12-digit numerical barcodes. Each product variant requires a unique UPC to distinguish it from others, which is crucial for inventory management and sales tracking. Sellers need to register with GS1, an organisation that provides globally recognised barcodes. This registration ensures that the UPCs are unique and prevent product duplication across the global marketplace.
  • European Article Number (EAN): Similar to UPCs but consisting of 13 digits, EANs are the standard barcode type used in markets excluding North America. These barcodes are essential for sellers operating or selling in global markets, as Amazon requires products listed in these regions to have EANs. Like UPCs, obtaining an EAN involves registering with GS1, ensuring global recognition and validity of the products across international platforms.
  • Amazon Standard Identification Number (ASIN): Amazon assigns a unique ASIN to each product listed on its platform. This identifier is crucial for managing Amazon’s internal product database and helps in cataloguing the vast array of items available. Although ASINs are generated by Amazon, sellers must first provide a UPC or EAN when creating new product listings. This system ties each ASIN to a globally recognized barcode, streamlining product identification and sales processes.

Understanding and correctly utilizing these barcodes is essential for successfully selling products on Amazon, ensuring efficient inventory management and optimal market reach.


Understanding FNSKU Labels

FNSKU labels are unique identifiers used exclusively within Amazon’s fulfilment system, linking products directly to a seller’s account. These labels are crucial for inventory management, especially for sellers who utilise Amazon Fulfillment Services. Unlike universal UPCs or EANs, FNSKUs ensure that every item in an Amazon warehouse can be accurately tracked, sorted, and associated with the correct seller, streamlining the fulfilment process.

Creating FNSKU Labels

To create FNSKU labels, sellers must access their Amazon Seller Central account, choose the relevant product from their inventory list, and use the platform’s settings to generate and print the labels. It’s crucial to ensure that these labels are clear and easily scannable to facilitate proper handling and tracking within Amazon’s fulfilment centres, thereby preventing any potential mismanagement or errors in the order processing chain.

Applying FNSKU Labels

When applying FNSKU labels, it’s important to affix them to a smooth, flat area of your product packaging to guarantee easy scanning. Cover all other barcodes with the FNSKU label to avoid any scanning conflicts that could lead to errors in Amazon’s fulfilment process, ensuring accurate tracking and handling.


How Barcodes Work on Amazon

On Amazon, the process of utilising barcodes begins when sellers register their product’s UPC or EAN with the platform. This is a necessary step to ensure each product can be distinctly identified and tracked. Following registration, Amazon assigns an ASIN to each product, linking it to the seller’s inventory within Amazon’s massive database. Products are then labelled with these barcodes before entering Amazon’s fulfilment centres. During fulfilment, these barcodes are scanned to accurately track inventory levels, locate items quickly, and process orders with high efficiency. This system ensures a smooth operational flow from warehouse to customer delivery.


Benefits of Using Barcodes on Amazon

Using barcodes on Amazon brings several crucial advantages for sellers. Firstly, they enhance inventory management by providing precise tracking of products, reducing the likelihood of errors such as miscounts or misplacements. This accuracy helps in maintaining optimal stock levels and prevents issues like overstocking or stockouts. Secondly, barcodes improve product visibility. Each barcode is unique, making it easier for products to be identified and found both by Amazon’s systems and customers. This facilitates quicker, more efficient order processing, as products can be sorted and shipped rapidly. Lastly, using the correct barcodes ensures compliance with Amazon’s policies, helping sellers avoid penalties and maintain their selling privileges. Overall, barcodes streamline operations, making selling on Amazon smoother and more reliable.


How to Obtain Amazon Product Barcodes

Amazon Barcode Options

Obtaining a UPC or EAN from GS1 is a simple method to start selling on Amazon. These barcodes are accepted globally and ensure compliance with Amazon’s standards.


Steps to Register and Generate Barcodes

To start registering and generating barcodes for your products, the first step is to sign up with GS1. When you register, GS1 assigns you a company prefix that is unique to your business. With this prefix, you can then create individual barcode numbers for each of your products. This system ensures that each barcode is unique worldwide, making your products easily identifiable and traceable across the global market. This registration helps manage inventory and enhances the credibility of your products, as they can be verified for authenticity anywhere.


Common Issues and Troubleshooting

Common issues with barcodes on Amazon include duplicates and mismatches in product information, which can cause listing errors and even lead to account suspension. It’s crucial for sellers to regularly check their barcode data for accuracy. Ensuring that each product has a unique, correctly matched barcode helps avoid these errors and the rejections that can disrupt sales and impact the seller’s reputation.


Tips for Amazon Sellers

For Amazon sellers, ensuring accuracy and consistency in barcode information is crucial. Properly placing barcodes on products — in visible, scannable locations — is essential to avoid processing delays. Additionally, regularly updating product information linked to each barcode helps maintain inventory accuracy and customer trust. By following these guidelines, sellers can enhance operational efficiency, reduce errors, and ensure a smoother workflow from stocking to shipping, ultimately improving customer satisfaction and compliance with Amazon’s standards.


Future Trends and Developments

Emerging technologies like RFID and advanced scanning systems are set to change how barcodes are used in eCommerce, potentially offering even more streamlined logistics and inventory management. RFID, for instance, allows for the wireless tracking of items, enabling a more precise inventory management without the need for direct line-of-sight scanning required by traditional barcodes. This technology could greatly reduce the time and effort involved in logging inventory and locating products within warehouses. As these technologies become more integrated, sellers on platforms like Amazon could see significantly improved operational efficiencies, leading to faster processing times and reduced errors in inventory management.



Effectively using barcodes is crucial for maximising your success on Amazon. They not only help in complying with Amazon’s requirements but also enhance operational efficiency. By effectively using barcodes, sellers can better manage their inventories, reduce the risk of errors, and speed up the processing of orders. The accuracy provided by barcodes also supports better sales tracking and forecasting, which is critical for maintaining the balance of supply and demand. In essence, mastering the use of barcodes is essential, as it directly impacts customer satisfaction, compliance with Amazon’s strict standards, and overall operational smoothness.


Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the purpose of an Amazon product barcode, and why is it important for sellers?

Amazon product barcodes help in tracking inventory and simplifying the logistics process, making it easier for sellers to manage their products on a large scale.

2. How can I obtain a UPC for my Amazon products, and is it required for each item?

You can obtain a UPC by registering with GS1, and yes, each unique product variant requires its own UPC.

3. What distinguishes UPC, EAN, and ASIN, and when should I use each on Amazon?

UPC is typically used in North America, EAN is used internationally, and ASINs are Amazon’s internal system for tracking products.

4. What is an FNSKU label, and why is it necessary for Amazon’s fulfilment process?

An FNSKU label uniquely identifies products linked to a seller’s account within Amazon’s systems, which is crucial for managing inventory in Amazon’s fulfilment centres.

5. Can I use the same barcode for different products, or do I need unique codes?

Each unique product variant requires its own barcode to accurately track and manage inventory.

6. What are the common mistakes to avoid when creating FNSKU labels for my products?

Ensure labels are correctly positioned, scannable, and not duplicating existing barcodes to avoid processing errors.

7. How should I apply FNSKU labels on my products, and what happens if I make an error in labelling?

Apply FNSKU labels clearly and visibly. Errors in labelling can lead to shipment delays or inventory errors.

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