Get Started with U.P.C. Barcodes

You have your product, your business plan, and maybe even some prospective buyers. Now it’s time to take the next step. To sell your product in a store or online, you could be looking for a barcode, a GS1 Company Prefix, a Global Trade Item Number® (GTIN®), a U.P.C.*, or a GTIN-14.

Whatever your needs, the solution begins with an authentic GS1 Company Prefix. A GS1 Company Prefix is the only way to uniquely identify your brand in the global supply chain – and it’s part of every barcode and identification number you create.

You don’t buy barcodes from GS1 US – you create your own. When you license a GS1 Company Prefix, you get access to Data Driver® —our easy-to-use online tool for creating, managing, and printing accurate barcodes. We also provide referrals to GS1 US Certified Barcode Professionals who can create and print barcodes for you. In addition you’ll get access to our expert Member Support team, online education and training materials, how-to webinars with GS1 Standards experts, an online member center to access your resources, and more.

How it works

Step 1: Estimate Your Barcode Needs

Products come in many sizes, colors and package configurations (e.g. individual boxes or cases). Each of these variations may require a unique identification number. Use our Barcode Estimator below to help figure this out. Please note that as your company grows and you need additional capacity, you can come back to GS1 US to license additional GS1 Company Prefixes.

Step 2: Determine your GS1 Company Prefix Pricing

A GS1 Company Prefix comes in five different “capacities” that allow you to create as few as 10 unique items or as many as 100,000 unique items. Our pricing schedule is based on the number of unique items that you need to identify. Your Initial Fee licenses the Company Prefix to you for one year. After that, you’ll pay the Annual Renewal Fee to continue using the licensed Company Prefix for your barcodes.

Number of Items Needing a Barcode/GTIN* Initial Fee Annual Renewal Fee
1 - 10
1 - 100 $750 $150
1 - 1,000 $2,500 $500
1 - 10,000 $6,500 $1,300
1 - 100,000 $10,500 $2,100
NDC/NHRIC Company Prefix  $10,500 $2,100
*If you need to identify locations, use the same table for pricing

Step 3: Fill out our online application

Provide your contact information, choose your prefix capacity, and pay online. It’s that easy. Within one business day you’ll get a Welcome Email from GS1 US. It includes all the important information to get started including your prefix certificate and access to the online member center. You can start creating barcodes right away using Data Driver.

Looking for EPC/RFID, EDI, and more? You’ll still want to start with a GS1 Company Prefix.

Already have one? Click here >

We’re working with various communities through Industry Initiatives and Readiness Programs.

Learn more >

* In this publication, the letters “U.P.C.” are used solely as an abbreviation for the “Universal Product Code” which is a product identification system. They do not refer to the UPC, which is a federally registered certification mark of the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) to certify compliance with a Uniform Plumbing Code as authorized by IAPMO.


Before getting started, we recommend that you watch our 4-minute video to learn how the GS1 Company Prefix can help your company.

Learn more about creating barcodes with Data Driver