Barcodes for Importers

The Challenge for Importers
  Simply Barcodes understands the unique challenges facing importers. Many importers express confusion regarding the requirements for a UPC or an EAN. Others state uncertainty about how to get barcodes on their products manufactured overseas. Importers bringing in products that already have codes may wonder if they can use the code and if not, who is responsible for barcoding the product.
Innovative Solutions for Importers
  Simply Barcodes makes barcoding simple. You face numerous challenges when working to get your products to the market, so barcoding should not be one of them. Our service helps you achieve business success by ensuring that you select the right code for your markets. We frequently aid in facilitating barcoding between importers and their manufacturers by sending the required codes directly to the manufacturer.
Benefits for Importers
  Whether you import luxury goods or office supplies, most companies regardless of size want to accomplish the following:
Sell more product
Control costs
Meet retailer requirements

Simply Barcodes can help you meet all of these challenges by:
Advising you on the industry requirements
Guiding you through the process with experienced and bilingual consultants
Sending your codes directly to your manufacturer
Ensuring same business day service
Want us to select the right code, generate the code and forward it to your manufacturer?
  Order Now! Single Barcodes for $89! Or call us at +1-404-869-0701 or 1-877-872-2060 (toll free)

What is a UPC?
  "UPC" stands for Universal Product Code. Retail products in the North American market feature a single standard UPC barcode. The exceptions to this rule are: books, magazines, greeting cards, and prescription drugs. Retail products sold outside of North America feature an EAN barcode.

How do UPC codes work?
  In short, the UPC is a 12-digit unique code for your product represented by scannable bars.

Universal Product Codes (also known as GTIN-12) appear as lines (bars) of varying widths representing the series of numbers commonly shown below the bars.

Barcode scanners read the bars and convert them back to the 12-digit UPC number that they represent.

When you reach an agreement with a retailer to carry your product(s), they request the information required by their unique proprietary sales and inventory tracking systems.

Your 12-digit UPC number, when looked up within the retailer’s inventory system, finds the corresponding product name and price.

This information helps the retailer keep accurate inventory data, review sales, and reorder.

Do I really need a UPC code on my product?
  Most retailers refuse to accept products that are not barcoded. In addition, many distributors make use of barcodes in their warehouse systems.

Do I need a Shipping Container Code (SCC - 14)?
  Yes, the common method by which your retailer scans your product shipments into inventory is the SCC-14 or Shipping Container Code.

What do I need to know about the standards organization for UPC codes?
  GS1, formerly called the UCC (Uniform Code Council) and EAN International, manages Universal Product Code standards.

UPC codes can be obtained by:

       1. Leasing directly from GS1 for a considerable initial fee plus ongoing annual fees
       2. Purchasing for a one-time fee from Simply Barcodes

Do I need to have a company prefix?
  The only reasons that you might need a company prefix are that 1) you have thousands of unique products or 2) you are selling to The Kroger Co., Macys, Inc., Wal-Mart Stores, or Sears Brands, LLC.
  What is a company prefix?
  In the past, UPC bar codes consisted of a manufacturer’s number (also called a company prefix), a product number, and a check digit. The first six digits of a UPC bar code were referred to as the manufacturing number that always remained constant on all of a company’s products. The manufacturing number was followed by a five digit product number that is unique to each product. The 12th digit was a mathematically calculated digit, called a check digit.

That system in its original form was abandoned some time ago. Currently, it is no longer possible to look at any given Universal Product Code and determine which portion of the 12 digit number is a fixed manufacturer’s number and which portion is a product number.
  Why is this?
  The first reason is variable length prefixing.

GS1 changed its business model and began issuing 7, 8 and even 9-digit manufacturer’s prefixes in addition to the original 6-digit manufacturer’s number. The result of this is that it is no longer possible to look at any given UPC code and break it up into a company’s prefix and product ID number.

The second reason is that GS1 leased single UPC numbers for a short time in 2008, a program they’ve since discontinued in the U.S. but still offer in other GS1 member country organizations.

Since these single UPC codes do not technically have a prefix, Universal Product Codes need to be taken as the whole unique 12-digit number which is associated with your product/company information at the Point of Sale.

What if I am selling to The Kroger Co., Macys, Inc., Wal-Mart Stores, Sears Brands, LLC or other stores that require GS1 membership?
  In the case of these few retailers, you will have no choice but to lease your UPC numbers directly from GS1. These stores require that you have your own GS1 membership.

However, once you have obtained your prefix number from GS1, you can still return to us to have your digital UPC barcode images created using the GS1 numbers. You would also want to use our firm to have your master carton barcodes (SCC-14 codes) created. Large retailers generally require that you properly label your shipments with SCC-14 barcodes.

How do I get UPC codes for products sold within the United States?
1stGo to our Order Page at or call us at +1-404-869-0701 or toll free at 1-877-872-2060.
2ndPlace your order.
  We only require that you provide contact and billing information. You are not required to provide product information.
  Your retailer collects your product information, which they associate with your barcode at the Point of Sale.
  Note: We also accept PayPal, checks or money orders. If using one of these payment methods, please download and complete an Order Form and include it with your payment.
PayPal Checks/Money Orders

Send funds to:

Send funds to:

Simply Barcodes
1170 Peachtree Street NE, Suite 1200
Atlanta, GA 30309

What do I get when I order my UPC code?
1stUpon completion of your order, you will receive an email confirmation of your UPC barcode purchase.
2ndSimply Barcodes then assigns your official UPC numbers from our database of official codes issued by the UCC (now called GS1).
3rdThe digital barcode images are generated from the numbers you purchased.
4thYour UPC barcodes are emailed to you as an attachment.

In what format are my UPC codes created?
  For your convenience, we offer your barcode graphic in three different formats so that your graphic artist, printing company, or manufacturing facility can work with your barcode graphic no matter what software system they use:
EPS Format - This layered, vector EPS file is the preferred format of most graphic designers due to its quality and versatility, particularly for resizing. EPS is an "exchange" format, not necessarily associated with one specific graphics program. An exchange format is one intended for multiple applications to be able to open.
TIFF Format - This layered TIFF file works well for graphic artists who need a transparent background. This format is not suitable for significant resizing.
JPEG Format - This uncompressed, high-quality JPEG file is the most common file format. All computers can open a JPEG. However, it is not suitable for resizing.

When do I get my UPC codes?
  The turn-around time is often within an hour.
All orders received before 4 p.m. Eastern Time on business days are completed the same day. Orders placed after 4 p.m. will be processed next business day. If you require RUSH completion, please call 1-877-872-2060 (toll-free) or +1-404-869-0701 (international) to make arrangements.

How do I get my UPC code on my product?
  Providing the barcode image to your graphic artist and including it in the design of your packaging prior to manufacturing is the easiest and most economical way of getting your barcode on your product.

If your product packaging has already been printed, you will need barcode labels. If you would like to order pre-printed barcode labels, please select this option when ordering your UPC code. If you have already completed your order, then click label printing to order labels. All orders received before 2 p.m. Eastern Time on business days are completed the same day and shipped for free within the continental U.S.


  •   “I was surprised at how fast and responsive the customer service was – I’m impressed that I was immediately transferred through to a real person. Simply Barcodes was willing to work with me on my request, and that makes a huge difference. Very helpful – thanks so much!”

    Diana Lee
    Harvard Business School
    Boston, MA, USA
  •   “Our experience with Simply Barcodes was excellent. The ordering process is easy and the delivery of the bar codes was super-fast.”

    Bryan Allgeier
    CJ Advertising
    Nashville, TN, USA
  •   “I ordered a barcode from you late Sunday afternoon and received the finished product by Monday morning. This isn’t an exception with Simply Barcodes - I get the same great service every time I order.”

    Geoffrey Hoppe
    Crimson Circle Energy Co.
    Golden, CO, USA
  •   “We purchased codes from you previously and we expect to purchase another 10 codes from you within a year. Thanks for a great service.”

    Judy Jui
    Judy’s Magic Mixes
    Ontario, Canada
  •   “The service was prompt.
    The customer service representative answered all of my UPC questions in detail. Thanks for all the answers and service.”

    Muriel Edgar
    Eco Comfort Fuel
    Ontario, Canada