Prefixes, GTINs, U.P.C.s, and Barcodes Are All Connected

In fact, a GS1 Company Prefix is the first part of a barcode. Let's break it down: 

  • The Prefix is what identifies your company
  • The GTIN (partially made up of the Prefix) is what identifies your product online
  • The barcode is what identifies your product at a physical checkout counter
Just check out the picture to the right! 

It's important to understand that the reason retailers recommend GS1 US is because of the GS1 Company Prefix. When you get your barcodes from GS1 US the Prefix will identify your company only. If you get your barcodes from anywhere else, it's very likely that you will not be listed as the brand owner of that barcode. 


Retailers often verify the authenticity of your GTINs by checking in the GS1 Database before they allow you to sell on their site. If your company is not listed in the database as the brand owner of that GTIN, your account might be suspended, or you might need to relabel your products. Both will cost you time and money!

If you want to follow retailer recommendations, you need to license a GS1 Company Prefix from GS1 US in order to get the GTINs you need for your products.

Why you should choose GS1 US over the other options:

In addition to being listed as the brand owner of that barocde, GTINs from GS1 US give you better search results! GTINs with good product data help search engines like Google and Bing link your product to their product catalog and with what users are searching.


Watch the 48 second video of why Margaret Barrow, Owner of Brooklyn Granola chose GS1 US.

Uniquely identify your brand and your barcodes with GTINs from GS1 US and invest in the future of your business.


Need more information like pricing?

Prefix Pricing Schedule*

Number of items needing a barcode/GTIN** Initial fee Annual renewal fee
1 – 10 $250 $50
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 $2,100 $2,100
Still need more information? Visit our How to Get Barcodes page >

If you’re ready to get GS1 Barcodes and GTINs for your products today, apply now >