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How to Get a UPC Barcode

Universal Product Codes (UPCs) are 12-digit numbers commonly required for products sold by retailers and distribution centers. Each unique product requires its own assigned UPC number from GS1. Products are then identified with UPC barcodes.

How do I get assigned UPC numbers?

All UPC numbers are assigned by GS1 – the Global Standards Organization, formerly known as the Uniform Code Council. Their website is very helpful and includes complete information about applying for and being assigned UPCs. If you’re outside the US, visit here to find contact information for your location.

Ask a real personIf you need UPC labels to sell your products or plan on reselling through large retailers, you will need to work with GS1 directly.


I have my assigned UPC numbers from GS1. Where do I get UPC labels?

From The Label Experts, of course!

Request Free Samples

Option #1 Buy preprinted UPC labels. We design, print, and ship them to you. All it takes to start is filling out this form.

Option #2 Print your own UPC barcode labels. How? We sell all kinds of blank labels, thermal transfer printers and barcoding software—everything you need to get started printing your own labels.


What are ISBN and Bookland numbers? How are they different from a UPC Barcode?

The Bookland EAN or ISBN-13 barcode is used globally to identify primarily books, as well as DVDs, ebooks, CDs and software. The unique number assigned to each item is the International Standard Book Number (ISBN). ISBNs are printed on books using EAN-13 barcode symbology. The Bookland EAN barcode may be followed with a 5-digit supplemental code that contains the suggested retail price.

If you are a new publisher, you need to be assigned ISBNs before creating them, just like UPCs. The agency responsible for assigning these numbers in the US is R.R. Bowker.

Just like UPCs, you can order custom ISBN labels from us by requesting a custom quote and samples to test. Learn more about ISBNs here.


Are you designing packaging labels that have a UPC barcode included?

For packaging that incorporates a UPC or ISBN into your graphic design, we can provide the code in electronic format (typically an EPS file). Contact The Label Experts for more details.


Still have questions about UPC barcodes and labels? Connect with The Label Experts or call 1-800-535-6987 for help.

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