The Amazon Product Identifier Field Explained

For sellers on Amazon Marketplace, product identification is a key requirement for listing products and creating offers. Among the many technicalities, the Product Identifier field could be considered the starting point, enabling sellers and buyers alike to find a particular product and track transactions. In this article, we’ll explore the Product Identifier field, its various types, and how to use it to determine whether your products are already listed on Amazon Marketplace.

Understanding the Amazon Product Identifier Field

The Amazon Product Identifier is a unique code assigned to each product listed on the marketplace. It serves as a digital fingerprint, distinguishing one product from another within the catalogue. This identifier is crucial for product listing, inventory management, and ensuring accurate product information display.

Types of Amazon Product Identifiers

Amazon recognises several types of product identifiers, each serving a specific purpose and catering to different types of products:

  1. UPC (Universal Product Code): A 12-digit numerical code commonly found on retail products, used for scanning at the point of sale. UPCs are ideal for identifying individual products with unique attributes, such as books, electronics, and packaged goods.
  2. EAN (European Article Number): Similar to UPCs, EANs are 13-digit numerical codes widely used in Europe and other regions (including South Africa). They serve the same purpose as UPCs and are often interchangeable, providing global compatibility for product identification.
  3. GTIN (Global Trade Item Number): A globally unique identifier for trade items, developed by GS1. It encompasses several different formats, including UPC, EAN, and JAN.
  4. ISBN (International Standard Book Number): Specifically designed for books, ISBNs consist of a unique numerical code assigned to each edition and variation of a book. They facilitate the accurate identification and classification of books across different retailers and distribution channels.
  5. JAN (Japanese Article Number): A barcode standard used in Japan, similar to the UPC used in the United States. It is a subset of the International Article Number (EAN) system.
  6. MINSAN (Minsan Code): A specific product identifier used in the Italian pharmaceutical industry. It stands for “Ministero della Sanità,” the Italian Ministry of Health.
  7. SKU (Stock Keeping Unit): An alpha-numeric seller-specified code assigned by a seller to a product to track inventory internally. (Note: Must be accompanied by sellerId.)
  8. ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Number): Exclusive to Amazon, ASINs are alphanumeric codes assigned to products listed on the platform. They serve as a unique identifier for each product and are essential for product listing, search, and indexing within Amazon’s ecosystem.

How to check if your product is already listed on Amazon

You can use Amazon Product Identifiers to check if a product already exists on Amazon by following these steps:

1. Use the “Add a Product” tool

Log in to your Amazon Seller Central account and navigate to the “Inventory” tab to select “Add a Product.” This tool allows you to search for existing products in Amazon’s catalogue using one of the above-mentioned Product Identifiers.

2. Review search results

Amazon will display search results based on the entered product identifier:

  • If the product exists: The product listing will appear in the search results. You can review the existing listing to confirm it matches your product.
  • If the product does not exist: No matching products will be found, indicating that the product is not yet in Amazon’s catalogue.
3. Create an offer

If the product already exists, you can proceed to create your offer by clicking on the Sell Yours button next to the product listing.

Key Considerations for using the Product Identifier

  1. Accurate product information: Ensure that each product listing includes the correct Product Identifier Field corresponding to its type. Inaccuracies or discrepancies can lead to confusion among buyers, and affect your seller performance.
  2. Product variation management: If you offer variations of a product (eg different sizes or colours), ensure that each variation has a unique Product Identifier Field. This allows for accurate tracking of inventory and prevents confusion among buyers.
  3. Global selling considerations: If you sell internationally, be mindful of regional differences in product identifier standards (e.g. UPC in North America, EAN in Europe).
  4. Brand registry and product authenticity: If you are a brand owner, enroll in Amazon’s Brand Registry program to gain greater control over your product listings and protect against counterfeit or unauthorised sellers. Verified brands enjoy enhanced visibility and trust among buyers.

Managing offers with Stock2Shop

If you prefer a more efficient approach and are using Stock2Shop to integrate with Amazon via the SP-API, you can use the Product Identifier to create and auto-update offers. The process works as follows:

1. Captured product identifiers

Ensure that your products on Stock2Shop have one of the required product identifiers mentioned above. These codes can be captured in your barcode or SKU field on Stock2Shop. If they already exist in your accounting system, they can be synced onto Stock2Shop automatically.

2. Product discovery

The Amazon Marketplace connector on your Stock2Shop console has a feature called “Product Discovery”. Using your product identifiers, Stock2Shop can scan Amazon to check which of your products are listed. If a product is found to already exist on Amazon, Stock2Shop will retrieve the ASIN and product type, and automatically create an offer.

Get in touch with Stock2Shop if you would like to explore a streamlined way of managing your Amazon offers.

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