Estimate How Many Barcodes You Need

The most important thing to understand is that each variation of each product you sell requires a unique barcode. You’ll need to determine exactly how many barcodes you need before you fill out the application. You can follow the example below or use the barcode estimator to help you decide.

3 sizes x 3 colors = 9 barcodes

If you make a t-shirt, but that shirt comes in three sizes (small, medium, large) and three colors (blue, pink, purple), you need to identify 9 product variations.

3 sizes x 3 colors x 3 styles = 27 barcodes

If they also come in 3 styles, you'll need 27 barcodes.

3 sizes x 3 colors x 3 styles x 3 packages = 81 barcodes

If they also come in 3 packages, you'll need 81 barcodes.

Need more help in figuring out how many barcodes you need?

Access the Barcode Estimator


Start Small with a GS1 US GTIN

Barcodes issued by GS1 US uniquely identify a single retail product online and in retail stores around the world. If you have only a few products that need barcodes, this might be the most cost-effective option for your company. GS1 US GTINs are a great option for small companies that are looking to quickly list their products for sale. Barcodes from GS1 identify your company as the brand owner of that product, which is a valuable piece of information that retailers look for!

*License a GS1 US GTIN for $30 and get a free lifetime subscription to GS1 US Data Hub, an online tool you can use to create your own barcode and manage your product data. There is no annual renewal fee for a GS1 US GTIN.

Note: GS1 US GTIN is not available to identify medical devices, pharmaceutical products, variable measure products or mixed cases, or to create coupons

Get a GTIN


Scale Up with a GS1 Company Prefix

A GS1 Company Prefix allows businesses to get multiple barcodes at a single time, as well as identify locations, mixed cases, create coupons, and create higher levels of packaging like a case or pallet.

GS1 Company Prefixes are great for companies with growing product lines. It gives you the barcodes you need for today plus barcodes at your fingertips to quickly respond to growth opportunities.

We offer different barcode options to best serve our members. You can license a GS1 Company Prefix that comes in different “capacities” representing the maximum number of unique products you can identify with that license.

As a part of your membership you will gain access to GS1 US | Data Hub Product, the tool you use to create your own barcodes and manage your product data. As long as you renew your Membership every year, your product data will remain linked to your company information and you will maintain access to GS1 US Data Hub® where you can control your product data

Note: If you are in regulated healthcare you must license an NDC/NHRIC Company Prefix

Get a Prefix

Prefix Pricing*
Number of items needing a barcode/GTIN** Initial fee Annual renewal fee
10 $250 $50
100 $750 $150
1,000 $2,500 $500
10,000 $6,500 $1,300
100,000 $10,500 $2,100
NDC/NHRIC Company Prefix $2,100 $2,100

What to Expect

Our check out process has 3 simple steps:

  1. Select a GS1 US GTIN or GS1 Company Prefix and put them in your cart
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Pay (here is our W-9 form)

You will get a welcome email from GS1 US within minutes. It includes all the important information you need to get started, including access to myGS1 US—your online member center.


Get a GTIN Get a Prefix


*GS1 US reserves the right to change pricing on GS1 Company Prefix(es) or GS1 US GTIN(s). The use of GS1 US-issued Company Prefixes and GS1 US GTINs are pursuant to the terms and conditions of a License Agreement, which is subject to change at GS1 US’s sole discretion.

**If you need to identify locations, use the same table for pricing.

Learn How to Use Your Barcodes

Whether you already have your barcodes or just got them from GS1 US, you’re ready to take the next steps.

Start Using Your Barcodes

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.

This tool will help you estimate how many barcodes you will need to create for current and future products.*

Current Products

In most cases, you'll need one barcode for every product variation. Use the Worksheet and Examples tabs for additional help.

Future Products

Total Barcodes Needed:
Prefix Capacity:
Initial Fee:
Annual Fee:

*This Estimator tool helps you estimate your barcode capacity, initial fee, and annual renewal fee to license a GS1 Company Prefix. If you enter different information into the application your fees could change based on your input. For more information, see our Terms of Use.

Use this worksheet to help you determine the number of barcodes you will need. As you click the “Add To List” button, your product will appear in the list below.

Total Barcodes Needed:
Prefix Capacity:

Product List

    Take a look at the samples below to learn how to estimate the number of barcodes you need for a particular item.

    Barcode variation Example Images