All you need to know about EAN to export from India

European Article Number (EAN) or GTIN-13 is a standardized barcode that is largely used across Europe. In this blog, learn about the importance of EAN codes and how to obtain it.
What is EAN code
With increasing export trade and digitization of processes across the world, barcodes have become important and highly in use among sellers and businesses. Among other codes like GTIN, UPC, EAN or European Article Number is an important one. These EAN codes are a series of numbers that help identify products and are used for listing.

What is EAN?

EAN is a standardized barcode image that represents the 13-digit GTIN on most products customers shop for in the UK and globally, except North America (USA & Canada). It includes the origin of the country, manufacturer and product number. EAN code gives information about specific product type in a special packaging configuration from a particular manufacturer. It is used for marking products, distinguishing product types and its specification. There are two types of EAN1:

• An 8-digit code used for small products
• A 13-digit code that traders and exporters use for larger products

Structure of 13-digit EAN:

GS1 prefix:
It consists of three digits that identifies the GS1 member organization, which the manufacturer has joined.

Manufacturer code:

This is of variable length and is a unique code assigned to each manufacturer by the numbering authority indicated by the GS1 prefix.

Product code:

This is also of variable length and is assigned by the manufacturer, and follows the manufacturer code.

Check digit:

This is an additional digit that is used to verify that the barcode has been scanned correctly2.

Importance of EAN

Every product sold across Europe is assigned an EAN code, which makes product identification and selling easy for businesses. This reduces expenses in the warehouse and other logistical costs that may be incurred without a product code. Amazon FBA also requires EAN code to track inventory throughout the fulfilment process. Uniquely identified products through barcodes also allow Amazon international marketplaces to better understand what’s in their catalogue. Marketplaces usually use product identifiers or codes to structure product data on their websites so that they can improve a customer’s experience. It’s suggested that every Indian seller who wants to export to Europe have an EAN code for their products.

How to obtain EAN?

EAN codes are not a random combination of digits put together. They’re issued by GS1 on their website. GS1 holds all the rights and patents to barcodes. If you want to export many products, you must obtain equal number of EAN codes directly. Amazon SPN or Service Provider Network is a third-party service provider who can assist you with EAN codes.

To obtain an EAN, register with GS1 India. You will be required to upload a few business documents like PAN and GST, among others. Along with that, you can fill the online application form and submit it. You must add all your product variants and categories that your business offers. The number of EAN codes applied for cannot be changed later. The registration process usually takes about 7-10 working days3.

Once you have the EAN code, make sure that the number does not cover up a large part of a product. It is suggested that the code not take up more than 25% of the product or its packaging. There are usually 10 standard sizes that users can choose between. It should also be clearly visible. A black code on a white surface is ideal.

Post obtaining EAN and other required licenses, you can export from India in an easy and simple way with Amazon Global Selling.

How to export from India?

With Amazon Global Selling, you can start an export business anywhere, anytime. With over 300 million customers across the globe, businesses can reach international customers in 200+ countries and territories in 18 marketplaces like Amazon USA, UK, UAE, Australia and more.

Register your business

First, you must register your export business with Amazon Global Selling. You don’t have to be an existing Amazon India seller. The registration can be done online on Seller Central. You’ll need the following documents to register:
• ID proof (Aadhar, driving license or passport)
• Business address proof (Bank statement)
• Credit card (international transactions enabled)
Amazon seller registration

List your products

Once you have successfully registered to sell globally on Amazon, you can list your products. Remember to follow tips on how to list your products include attractive pictures and descriptions that’s clear to international customers. You can also seek help from third party service providers.
How to list your products on Amazon

Ship and receive payments

Once a customer places an order, you can choose to deliver by yourself or you can opt for Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). Under FBA, Amazon takes care of shipping, delivery, returns and customer concerns. Once a customer purchases your product, Amazon credits the money in your bank account in the currency of your choice.
Amazon FBA

Frequently Asked Questions

How to get EAN?
You can obtain an EAN code on the website of GS1 or a reseller. You would be required to fill the application form and submit documents that include details about your business, PAN and GST, among others.
Do I need to get different EAN codes for different products?
Yes, you need different EAN codes for different variations of products.
Can EAN number be used outside of Europe?
EAN is a universal standardized barcode, which can be used throughout the world except USA and Canada.
Published on January 31, 2022.

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*Map not to scale. The map has been used for design and representational purpose only, it does not depict the geographical boundaries of the country. These do not conform to the external boundaries of India recognized by the Survey of India.

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