Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

If you cannot find an answer to your question, please contact us

A barcode is an image that represents a small amount of information that can then be easily read by a barcode scanner or cell phone app. Barcodes come in many shapes and forms; however, you can mostly see them on retail products for pulling up price and product information at the checkout. In this case, the barcode is simply a 12 or 13 digit number encoded as an image. 
The barcoding system, created in the ’70s by George Laurer, is a universal system for keeping track of items and prices in inventory systems worldwide. This is now used by almost all retailers worldwide and works under the premise that each barcode is only allocated to one product. Therefore in any store, there is no chance of a barcode being on two different products. This system incorporates both UPC-A numbers and the superset EAN-13 Numbers.
While we can supply a wide variety of both retail (UPC-A & EAN-13) and non-retail barcodes (including QR Codes, Code 128/39, ITF-14 Barcodes), we mainly provide EAN-13 retail barcodes. These are the barcodes used most commonly on all retail products outside of the USA (except books and magazines). Our numbers come from the same original system as GS1 numbers. However, we are now outside of GS1’s control. Therefore we can sell these for a one-off cost.
 The short answer is ‘yes,’ ‘usually.’ – The vast majority of retailers find it much more comfortable if products entering their stores have barcodes on them. Many retailers require barcodes. This means that barcodes open the door to retailers and allow you to expand the availability of your product. If you are selling your product in your own store only and have no intention of selling it elsewhere, then you can opt not to use barcodes on your products. You can also label all of the products you stock with non-retail barcode numbers, which may be cheaper. This is because if the products are only for your internal use, they don’t need to be part of the ‘Barcoding System.’
– Both UPC-A Barcodes and EAN-13 Barcodes are used in retail stores worldwide. However, the 12 digit UPC-A codes are most common in the USA, whereas the EAN-13 Barcodes are most common in all other countries. As far as the actual encoding goes, these barcodes are very similar. In fact, a UPC-A Barcode can be encoded as an EAN-13 barcode by adding a ‘0’ to the front. In this case, the image or bars of the barcode will be exactly the same as the UPC-A barcode. Barcode scanners can generally pick up both types of codes easily; however, it is recommended if your product is going into the USA only (or mainly) that you get a UPC-A Barcode. If your product is selling in any other country, an EAN-13 barcode is best.

please see our Difference Between UPC-A and EAN-13 Page for more details.

 It is best practice to get a different barcode for each product or product variation. This is because stores use barcodes for two primary purposes: 1. Barcodes are used for obtaining the price of the product when scanned at the checkout. 2. Barcodes are used for keeping track of stock and deciding when to reorder an item.

This means that if the retailers only use barcodes for option 1, you can get away with having the same barcode for 2 product variations (i.e., different colors of the same product). However, if the retailer uses barcodes for variant 2 as well, then a different barcode will be required for each product variation.

In general, retailers prefer to stock products that will be straight forward to manage. Some retailers may prefer not to stock products if they have to manually count how many are left of each size and reorder accordingly. Therefore it is recommended that you have a different barcode for each variation.

 The only types of retail products that do not use EAN-13 Barcodes are Books and Magazines. All other products used EAN-13 or UPC-A Barcodes – You can purchase there here.
Our barcodes are accepted in nearly all stores worldwide. However, there are a few exceptions. The only stores to our knowledge that do not accept our barcode numbers are the ‘Super Cheap Retail Group’ and ‘Woolworths Australia Central Branches’ in Australia, ‘Walmart, Sam’s Club, Krogers, Fred Mayers, Macy’s & JC Penney’s’ in the USA and ‘Super Retail Group and Foodstuffs Auckland and Wellington Branches [Only on food products].’ Apart from those stores, we have sold ten’s thousands of these barcode numbers and never come across difficulty with other stores.

We can also arrange independently accredited verification reports, which means that more stores accept our barcodes than any other retailer

For more information on which stores do not accept our barcode and which require verification reports, please see Barcode Acceptance.

 No, we do not guarantee this – No barcode company can guarantee this. Retailers can choose their requirements for barcodes whether or not they make sense. These requirements are also subject to change. However, we have sold thousands of barcodes worldwide and are confident that apart from the stores mentioned above, stores will accept our barcode numbers. If you are unsure, feel free to contact us to query particular stores.
 If you purchase one barcode number, then you will not be supplied with a company prefix (no barcode company provides this). However, if you wish to buy either 10, 100, 1000, or 10,000 barcodes from us, we can supply you with a unique company prefix. The length of the company prefix will be dependent upon how many variations are required to make a total of 13 digits. So if you order 10 barcodes, your company prefix will be 1 digit longer than if you order 100.
 A retail barcode is simply a unique number encoded as an image. As such, it does not contain any company or product information encoded into it. When the barcode goes into stores, the product information is attached to the barcode in the store’s scanning system so that when the barcode is scanned, it links the computer to the associated product information.
 You can order a barcode here. EAN-13 barcodes are the first option available. Here you may also choose to purchase barcode registration. After you proceed to checkout, you can elect to pay by credit card or pay through Paypal. Once payment has been made, we will email you through your barcode with the images as attached files. If you would like to pay by bank transfer or via another alternate method, then please email us. 
 Once you receive your barcode number with the images as attached files, you can incorporate them into your product packaging or have them printed onto adhesive labels. You can resize the barcode before doing this if you wish. However, you should be aware of the barcode dimensions. When a retailer receives your barcode and product, they will scan the barcode into the system and enter the product information so that when the barcode is scanned after this point, the product information will automatically appear.
 Yes, they will. We can supply both EAN-13 Barcodes (which are used worldwide) and UPC-A Barcodes (for use in the USA and Canada).

Our barcodes are currently being used in the following countries worldwide: Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Brazil, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Channel Islands, China, Cook Islands, Curacao, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominican Republic, East Timor, England, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Hong Kong,  India,  Ireland,  Israel,  Italy,  Jamaica,  Japan,  Jersey,  Kiribati,  Kuwait,  Lebanon,  Lithuania,  Malaysia,  Malta,  Mauritius,  Mexico,  Mozambique,  Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Portugal, Rarotonga, Rwanda, Singapore, Scotland, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sultanate of Oman,  Suriname, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Tonga, UAE, Uganda, UK, USA, Vanuatu, Pakistan, Wales, Zambia.

This list is expanding all the time, so please let us know if your country is not on the list, and we can check if it is a recent addition. Or, you could be the first.

 We offer affordable legal barcode numbers for a one-off cost. Some of our features include:

1. Affordable barcodes.

2. No Ongoing fees – the barcodes are sold for a one-off cost, so you only pay once

3. Barcode Images Provided – we also provide high resolution (600 dpi) barcode images in several different formats.

4. No compulsory membership – These include time-consuming forms and money consuming fees

5. Quick Service – you will either receive your barcodes immediately (If you order a retail barcode) or within 12 hours. We can speed up ServiceService if you require something urgently.

6. Can provide accredited verification reports – we can provide independently accredited verification reports, which means that more stores accept our barcodes than any other reseller.

Please see ‘why buy from us‘ for more information on this. 

 Yes, we guarantee that the barcode numbers we sell have never been sold or used before. Our numbers are unique and have originated from the Uniform Code Council (now GS1 US). We provide guarantee certificates that you can use as proof that you own the barcode number. We also have a written guarantee from the company these barcodes have come from that these numbers are for our resale only – the company we get them from is recommended by George Laurer (the inventor of the UPC Barcode). Furthermore, we check our numbers for illegal use on the internet before sale so that you can be sure at the time of purchase that no one is using them illegally. 
 No, once you purchase a barcode from us, it is yours for life, and you are free to use it how you wish. We have a selection of barcodes that do not require annual fees as they are outside of GS1’s control now. We pass this benefit onto the consumer. 

In the 1990s, GS1 was established in most parts of the world. They licensed their 13 digit barcode numbers to their members (and as discussed previously, charged both membership fees and joining fees). However, there was a separate organization in the USA – the Uniform Code Council (UCC) – which sold 12 digit barcode numbers to their members for a one-off cost (there were no ongoing license fees). The UCC was effectively competing with GS1. Their 12 digits numbers were effectively a subset of the 13 digit system.

In the late 1990s, the UCC merged with GS1, becoming GS1-US. As part of this change, they decided to start charging annual license fees for all of their members, including those who had paid a one-off payment for barcode numbers in the 1990s. Of course, many of these members weren’t happy with the new annual license fees, and so a group of them ended up in a class-action lawsuit with GS1. The members won in the courts in the early 2000s, resulting in a multimillion-dollar settlement by GS1. A further consequence of this court case is the proof that the original numbers issued by the UCC in the 1990s are outside of GS1s control now, and hence no license fees are required.  These are the numbers. They are bought by resellers and onsold. They are ‘new’ numbers, in that they have never been used on a retail product, and are part of the GS1 system. 

  The official standard size of an EAN-13 barcode is 37.3×25.9mm – This can be officially reduced to 80% of the size (around 20x30mm) or enlarged to 200% the size. It is dependent on the retailer as the whether you can get away with smaller or bigger size; however, if you require verification reports, then you should adhere to the standards as the barcode will not pass verification otherwise. It is always a good idea to do a test scan of your barcode before sending it to stores. Please see Barcode Dimensions for the official standards. 
 No – there is no up to date official database for barcodes to be registered (neither nationally nor internationally). Barcode registration is not required. Instead, it is up to resellers and GS1 to ensure that each number is only sold once and up to manufacturers (you) to ensure that each barcode is only allocated to one product. We offer an optional barcode registration service, which has different advantages. Please see here for more details. 
– George Laurer invented the 12 digit UPC-A Barcode system when he was working for IBM. He is supportive of reseller barcode numbers like ours and does not like the way GS1 has decided to restrict entry to the market by charging high fees. 
– The International Barcodes Network was formed to increase the availability of reseller barcodes and barcode information worldwide. They do this by providing local offices where local licensees, who know their markets, provide reseller barcode numbers for a reasonable price in the client’s native language.
Yes, It is possible to print your barcode in something other than black and white however the scanability of the barcode is dependent on there being a good level of contrast between the background and the bars. So, a light yellow barcode on a white background would not work well, whereas a dark blue on a white background would probably scan fine. Again it is a good idea to do a test scan before printing on all of your products.
– Books use ISBN Barcodes (International Standard Book Numbers). This means that to get an ISBN Barcode, an ISBN Number first needs to be obtained. Information on obtaining an ISBN can be obtained here.  
– Magazines use ISSN Barcodes (International Standard Serial Number). To obtain one of these, an 8 digit ISSN Number first needs to be obtained, and then this can be changed into a 13 digit barcode – or various other styles, including a 13+2 format for separate editions, etc. For information and purchasing of ISSN numbers or barcodes, please see our Magazine barcode page.
– Global location numbers are globally unique numbers that are used by some retailers as a location identifier for suppliers. These can be purchased here

Retail Barcodes
-> Retail barcodes are used only for retail purposes.
-> They are the requirement of established marts, supermarkets, and retail stores, which have POS (Point of Sale) software installed for managing the inventory and maintaining the sales record.
-> These barcodes are scannable only via handheld scanners that can be found in every other shop nowadays.
-> Retail barcodes are available in two types.

  • EAN-13 – A 13 digit barcode, which is accepted worldwide, but not in the USA and Canada.
  • UPC – A 12 digit barcode, which is accepted only in the USA and Canada.
  • ITF-14 – A 14 digit barcode, which is printed on product cartons and accepted worldwide.
QR Codes
-> QR codes are an excellent choice to market your business digitally.
-> These codes store information, website link, contact details, and whatnot within themselves, and when scanned, they show that information to customers, direct them to your website, and let them contact you directly.
-> Whether the customer bought a product from you (vendor) or indirectly, he/she will get connected to you just by scanning the QR code using their mobile devices.
-> QR codes enhance the credibility of your product and increase your clientele.

Barcodes Pakistan offers not just QR and Retail barcodes but also customized QR codes for businesses who wish to have their brand’s favicon at the center of it. Get them here, and grow your business independently.

There are no annual or renewal charges. We charge a one-time cost on the offered barcodes and QR code services. 

We are based in Karachi, Pakistan, and have no other branches. 

If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us. If you are ready to purchase your barcodes, you can do this here. Or here for CD barcodes, DVD barcodes, ISBN book barcodes, and ISSN magazine barcodes.