EAN is an abbreviation of European Article Number or European Article Number. GTIN stands for Global Trade Item Number. Both codes were developed by GS1; GS1 stands for General Specifications 1. This body issues new codes to manufacturers who bring new products onto the market. Trade and industry founded GS1 more than 45 years ago. There had to be an independent and neutral organization because this is the only way to easily distinguish billions of products from millions of companies worldwide. Like to know more? Check the website of GS1: https://www.gs1.nl/ We will use the name GS1 code in this article.
By linking a unique registered barcode to a product, everyone knows exactly which product it concerns and who the seller is. This makes GS1 codes the language of (online) sellers. Compare it to IP addresses: everyone on the internet has that unique IP address. This is how the internet works and EAN codes make the sale of products function better.
Why use these codes?
A GS1 code is a barcode that is used worldwide to identify, for example, the following units:
- Articles (GS1 article code or GTIN-13, EAN-13)
- Locations (GS1 Location Code or Global Location Number GLN)
- Shipments (Serial Shipping Container Code SSCC)
- Items with variable weights (23 code)
- Small packs (EAN-8)
- Customer cards (GS1 customer card code)
- Coupons (GS1 coupon code)
In the Netherlands, GS1 codes always start with the numbers 88 or 87. In CORAX we call such a standard barcode a license plate.