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This article applies to selling in: United States

Using the manufacturer barcode to track inventory

Each product fulfilled by Amazon requires a barcode. We will always use the manufacturer’s barcode to track your inventory throughout the fulfillment process, unless you change your barcode setting.

If multiple sellers have inventory with the same manufacturer barcode, Amazon may fulfill orders using products with that barcode when those products are closest to the customer. This happens regardless of which seller actually receives a customer’s order. We use this process to facilitate faster delivery.

How the manufacturer barcode works

When you receive a customer order:

  • We may fulfill that order using another seller’s unit of the same product if it’s closer to the customer
  • You receive credit for the sale
  • We instantly transfer a unit of the ordered product from your inventory to that of the other seller

When another seller receives an order for the same product:

  • We may use a unit of your inventory to fulfill that seller’s order
  • That seller receives credit for the sale
  • We instantly transfer a unit of the ordered product from the seller’s inventory to yours

For inventory tracked with the manufacturer barcode, each seller’s sourced inventory of the same ASIN is stored separately in our fulfillment centers. We can also track the original seller of each unit.

To fulfill your orders exclusively with your inventory, you can switch to the Amazon barcode at any time (see Changing your barcode setting below).

You can change your barcode setting for:

  1. Each offer you create or
  2. The ASIN when you change a listing from Fulfilled by Merchant to Fulfilled by Amazon

For more information, see these Seller University videos:

Product eligibility

To ensure that we can track your inventory accurately, Amazon has specific eligibility requirements for products using the manufacturer barcode. To qualify, products must:

  • Be in new condition
  • Have only one scannable barcode that is matched to one ASIN in the Amazon catalog
  • Have no expiration date
  • Not be consumable or topical products such as skin creams, shampoos, or cosmetics
  • Not be dangerous goods
Note: If the manufacturer barcode matches more than one ASIN, an Amazon barcode is required. We may also require the Amazon barcode in other cases. If this happens, we will notify you in advance.

Change your barcode setting

To change your barcode setting at any time:

  1. Go to Fulfillment by Amazon Settings.
  2. Scroll down to FBA Product Barcode Preference and click Edit.
  3. Select Manufacturer barcode or Amazon barcode, then click Update.

Please allow 24 hours for the changes to be fully processed before creating new offers.

Because the new setting will apply only to new offers, you cannot change the setting for existing offers. To use a new barcode setting, you must create a new offer or change the barcode setting for each existing offer.

Each shipment you create for an ASIN after changing your barcode will reflect this new setting until you change it. For the Amazon barcode, you must apply a sticker on each unit. For the manufacturer barcode, you must apply one of the eligible barcodes (GCID, UPC, EAN, JAN, or ISBN).

Note: As of April 17, 2018, GCIDs can no longer be used in place of a UPC, EAN, JAN, or ISBN to create ASINs. If your brand has been approved for the Brand Registry program and you don’t have UPCs, EANs, JANs, or ISBNs for your products, apply for GTIN exemption.

Changing the barcode setting for a single ASIN

You can use the manufacturer barcode for eligible products by changing a listing from Fulfilled by Merchant to Fulfilled by Amazon. For offers that are already set to Fulfilled by Amazon, you must create a new offer to use the manufacturer barcode.

The same process applies when you change to the Amazon barcode.

Removing inventory tracked using manufacturer barcodes

If you submit a removal order for inventory tracked using manufacturer barcodes, you will receive units with those same barcodes. However, they might not be the exact units that you originally sent to Amazon.

Converting to the manufacturer barcode

Every time you create a shipment, a notification on the Set Quantity page will show which of your offers qualify for the manufacturer barcode. To begin switching from the Amazon barcode to the manufacturer barcode, click Convert. You can also replace your current offer with the offer just created.

You can convert to the manufacturer barcode in one of two ways:

  1. Convert an existing offer. Your existing offer can be converted from the Amazon barcode. Offers qualify for conversion unless inventory for the item is on the way to a fulfillment center, already at a fulfillment center, or both.
  2. Create a new offer. When inventory for the item is on the way to a fulfillment center, already at a fulfillment center, or both, a new merchant SKU is required. The new merchant SKU must be no longer than 40 characters. Creating a new offer takes 15 minutes or less.

Eligible offers can also be converted to the manufacturer barcode when you go to Manufacturer barcode: Convert eligible offers. You can generate an Excel file with eligibility details for your existing inventory, along with instructions on how to update and upload the file to convert your eligible offers.

Note: For offers that require a new listing with a merchant SKU, make sure that name of the new SKU and the SKU that uses an Amazon barcode are easy to tell apart.

Important changes between old and new offers with the Manufacturer barcode

When you create a new offer after switching to the Manufacturer barcode or Amazon barcode, information from the old merchant SKU usually won’t apply. Read the following to see where action is required for your new SKU:

  • Inventory recommendations. The new SKU will have its own recommendations. To avoid confusion, consider closing the old SKU’s offer and placing a removal order to have units returned to you.
  • Pricing recommendations. Recommendations will not be available for the new SKU. That’s because certain nudges will show when a product has sold in the past 60 days but not in the past seven days, despite glance views. We recommend using the past pricing recommendation for the new SKU.
  • Advertising recommendations. Recommendations will not be shown on the new SKU until a certain number of customers has viewed them. If you received a nudge on the old SKU and want to use available promotions, apply them to the new SKU.
  • Business prices and quantity discounts.If you are an Amazon Business seller, you receive these recommendations. Because past recommendations will be not be immediately available for the new SKU, consider applying them to that SKU.
  • Inventory planning.Your new and old SKUs will have separate entries under Manage Excess Inventory, FBA Inventory Age, and Stranded Inventory.
  • Targeted advertising. If you want to continue targeted advertising such as Sponsored Products, launch them separately on the new SKU.
  • ASINs in programs.Converted ASINs may no longer be eligible for Seller Fulfilled Prime and FBA Small and Light.
  • Selling globally. The new SKU will be created only for the US marketplace. If you want to sell it globally, relist it in every desired marketplace.
  • Lightning Deals. If you want to create a Lightning Deal for the new SKU, send inventory for it to a fulfillment center. The inventory will be eligible only after it arrives there. Also, we recommend that you track the ASIN to make sure it remains eligible for Lightning Deals.
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