Unique identifiers for your product ads

Unique identifiers for your product ads

Use unique product identifiers to add userful information to your products.

Unique product identifiers like brand, gtin, and mpn are used to define a product in a global marketplace. Tagging your products with unique identifiers makes it easier for customers to find your products. Learn more about how the feed file is organized.

Types of unique product identifiers

gtin - Universal Product Code (UPC)

Used: Primarily in North America

Format: 12 numeric digits

What you need to know:

  • Also called GTIN-12 and UPC-A.
  • A unique numerical value for commercial products usually appearing under the barcode printed on retail products.

gtin - European Article Number (EAN)

Used: Primarily outside of North America

Format: 13 numeric digits but can be either 8 or 14 numeric digits

What you need to know:

  • Also called GTIN-13.
  • A unique numerical value for commercial products usually appearing under the barcode printed on retail products.

gtin - Japanese Article Number (JAN)

Used: Only in Japan

Format: 8 or 13 numeric digits

What you need to know:

  • Also called GTIN-13.
  • A unique numerical value for commercial products usually appearing under the barcode printed on retail products.

gtin - International Standard Book Number (ISBN)

Used: Globally

Format:

  • ISBN-10: 10 numeric digits
  • ISBN-13 (recommended): 13 numeric digists, typically starting with 978 or 979

What you need to know: A unique numerical value for commercial books published since 1970 that is on the back of the book with the barcode.

brand

Used: Globally

What you need to know: The brand of the product.

mpn - Manufacturer Part Number (MPN)

Used: Globally

Format: Alphanumeric digits

What you need to know: The unique number that identifies the product to its manufacturer.

What unique product identifiers are needed and how will they be enforced?

We recommend that you tag all three attributes for all your items, as they help to define your products in a global marketplace. Take a look at the policies for using product identifiers in the feed below.

  • New products: Submit all three attributes for new products that have GTINs:
    1. gtin assigned by manufacturer
    2. brand
    3. mpn assigned by manufacturer
  • Products without GTINs: For products that don’t have a GTIN, submit brand and mpn. Examples of products without GTINs include store brand products, antique products, replacement parts, custom-made products, etc.
  • Products without a brand: Submit the brand attribute only if the product has a clear brand or manufacturer associated.
  • Products without a GTIN, brand, or mpn: For products that don’t have all three identifiers, submit identifier_exists with the value set to FALSE. Examples of products without unique identifiers include custom handmade products, vintage products, etc.

Troubleshooting GTIN issues

Where can I find the unique product identifiers?expando image

Each product has a specific GTIN assigned by the manufacturer, so make sure you always use the exact values. To find unique product identifiers, you can:

  • Check the packaging of the product. GTINs appear below the barcode on the product’s packaging.
  • Contact the manufacturer.
  • Check on ISBNdb.com.
How do I know if my GTIN is correct?expando image

Here are some ways you can check to see if your GTIN is correct:

  • Check the number of digits. Each GTIN has a specific number of digits (refer to the table above), so make sure you have the correct number of digits.
  • Use only numbers.
  • Check the check digit or letter for ISBN-10. The last digit in the GTIN is a computer check digit to ensure that the unique identifier is correct. Use the GS1 Check Digit Calculator to calculate the check digit.
  • Check the restricted range numbers. Restricted ranges (prefixes of 2, 02, and 04) and coupon ranges (05, 981, 982, and 983) should not be included in GTINs.

Download the GS1 GTIN validation guide for additional information.

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