How do I register a Bar Code?

There are many aspects to registering a bar code, we’ll cover the most popular ones here.

This question often takes the form of, “How do I get my info to appear when scanned?” or “I want to see my info on Google, Amazon etc.”

First, let’s cover two major misconceptions about bar codes.

Myth #1: “UPC/EAN bar codes contain my product data, those bars = my product name & price.”

False. UPC/EAN’s are very simple numbers, they do not contain any data. Think of them like a phone number for your item, it’s just a unique reference number that connects to your product in a store's P.O.S. system.

Myth #2: “UPC/EAN’s & their data get uploaded into a global network that all stores connect to, like the internet.”

False. There is no global bar code network. Each store has their own private, internal database & P.O.S. system. So that when a can of Coke appears "$0.99" when scanned it's because of the store manager or employee on the back end that manually typed it all in before it ever entered the building.

To "register" a bar code: First thing you would do is personally assign the bar codes to your products, this is done by you/your company and you would have to keep your own records of these associations.

Then they are registered/recorded at the store it will be sold at. Each store has their own internal, private database. This means that every new store you approach won't know anything about your product until you input the data into their P.O.S. system.

A common response is how the GTIN's can be unique or verified if all stores do not talk to one another. This is an easy assumption to make and seems counter intuitive at first. While there is GS1, who is the global non-profit that manages bar code formats, they do not collect bar code data for every item on Earth, nor do they distribute this data to every store or website. GS1's purpose is to simply manage the formats, issue them in the first place and let businesses behave legally. Since all of the GTIN's we provide are from GS1-USA prior to 2002, they are legal, ownable and completely unique.

In response to this many ask; "If there’s no global bar code network, what is there?  The closest thing to that are the hundreds of private, for-profit, third-party companies like: Google, Amazon, Flipkart, etc & smartphone “scanning” apps like Red-laser, that offer their unique services (for a fee) to index & advertise your UPC/EAN numbers with your products.

Separately Bar Codes Talk publishes the world's largest database for legally owned bar codes here:  This is where you can verify the identity of any GTIN acquired by any client through us since we are the largest broker of GTIN's.