Product Identifiers: UPCs, EANs, ISBNs, GTINs and ASINs
To sell on Amazon, products need to be identified in your Shopify catalog to be listed on Amazon. Once identified Amazon applies a special code called an ASIN to the products.
An ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Numbers) is Amazon's unique number for a product being sold on Amazon. ASINs are unique blocks of 10 letters and/or numbers.
You will find an item's ASIN on the product detail page alongside further details relating to the item.
For example, the ASIN for Hasbro's "Monopoly" game is B00005N5PF.
If you already know the ASIN for a product you are selling you can simply use that. If you don't know it, Amazon uses your GTIN to try and find the ASIN or creates a new ASIN for you.
What is a GTIN?
A Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) is a unique identifier for trade items, developed by GS1 - “GS1 defines trade items as products or services that are priced, ordered or invoiced at any point in the supply chain”. Such identifiers usually come in the form of:
12 digit Universal Product Code (UPC)
13 digit European Article Number (EAN)
13 digit International Standard Book Number (ISBN).
Your product GTIN is represented by the product’s barcode and associated barcode number.
Without a GTIN/product identifier on Amazon, you will not be able to list your products unless you successfully apply for a GTIN exemption.
3 common methods for identifying your product GTIN:
- Check the product’s barcode
- Request the GTIN from your supplier
- Use a barcode lookup website to search for the product
*BE CAREFUL* Avoid purchasing “recycled” codes that are re-sold by online suppliers. Recycled codes can cause complications for your business down the line and often do not justify the upfront savings.
Purchasing GTINs with GS1
It is important to always purchase your GTINs from a reputable source, we recommend purchasing directly from GS1. To get barcodes for your business you’ll first need to join GS1. By becoming a member you obtain the licence for a unique range of barcode numbers. You also gain access to support, training and more.
Adding GTINs to your product catalogue
When adding your GTINs to your product catalogue, it is important that you upload your codes to Shopify into the 'barcode' field. This ensures Shopify continues to be the ‘source of truth’ of your product data.
Whilst, it's possible to enter them directly in Amazon by Codisto it's not advised due to breaking the 'source of truth' away from Shopify. You're having to input them anyway, you may as well input into Shopify which allows them to be used on your webstore as well. Plus Shopify has great importing capability from a csv file which is better than manually inputting one by one.
Consult Shopify help guides for more information on editing your products.
For example, the EAN of "Colgate Total 75 ml" is 4011200296908