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Tuesday, 11th of May 2021   09:06 PM

We make buying barcode numbers easy. Once you have your barcodes there is not much more to do. There are a few tips below, which cover a small range of topics, that crop up over the decades - which we have advised people about; when we get in to conversation. As a manufacturer, your responsibility is relatively simply; (a) put a unique barcode number on your product (b) ship them to retailers - it typically is as simple as that. Then the retailer does their bit - if you are interested and never asked a retailer what they actually do - they; (a) enter your barcode number on their own internal private IT system, and the text they want to see on their receipts when they sell it (some retailers have narrow receipt paper - so must abbreviate more) and finally enter the price they are selling it at, and who they buy it from (i.e. your details) - all in to their own internal private retail system (b) sell your product, by scanning the barcode to lookup; their internal price, their internal description (c) re-order your product using the sales figures gained; by internally recording every barcode scanned in their sales process.

TIP : Although not vital, we always say - consider buying one or two spare barcode numbers on top of the number you need right now; after all, barcode numbers last a lifetime e.g. 50+ years. We always suggest this because; (a) it saves you a little more money (as you get them at a discount) - but mainly because (b) to save you more time in future (the time saved is more valuable) - and (c) spare barcode numbers are handy when you mock up designs for potential new products - so you can use your real barcode number - and not accidentally go to press with the pretend barcode some designer put on your packaging designs just for added realism (you can guess how many times that has happened).

TIP : Have a quick word with us about your packaging setup (i.e. individual products, any multi-packs, cases for bulk shipping, etc.). We are not commercial printers, but we do know what type of barcodes need to go on what type of packaging (e.g. individual product barcodes, multi-pack barcodes, cases barcodes, pallet barcodes, etc.) and we can often save people making expensive mistakes that cost £100's. Many commercial printers, even the largest, simple do not advise manufacturers about these things, nor do many packaging designers, nor do many wholesale / retail customers.

TIP : If you can't afford £1,600 to £3,000+ for a barcode verifier, to check your printed barcode, ask us about our professional 50p tip (we sell the verifiers, if you can afford them - in fact they are good value; when you consider they last 10+ years and if they prevent one error per decade can pay their cost back).

TIP : If you are interested in QR Codes (the 'funky' 2D barcodes you see on some trendy products) ask us about them and how to optimise them - so they print accurately without having to spend £5,000+. on a 2D barcode quality verifier. We also offer 2D barcode and 2D barcode verifiers (although 2D barcodes have little to do with the mainstream retail supply chain).

TIP : If you are putting your product in a cylindrical container ask us about tips for that. Also consider - why is Cod Liver Oil (which is in a perfectly good bottle) in a box.

TIP : If you are dealing with Amazon and you supply direct to customers - you can save money, as you don't physically need to print barcodes. But - if your long term plans are not just to sell through Amazon, then immediately get your barcodes printed on the actual packaging. It is usually free - as you are printing packaging anyway. Adding barcode labels later is; (a) an additional cost for the labels (b) does not look good (c) takes valuable time.