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The Differences Between ASIN, ISBN, UPC, and EAN

Amazon Basics / August 22, 2018

For Amazon Sellers, understanding the difference between the UPC. ISBN, EAN and ASIN is important, especially if you are selling in multiple countries. Keeping track of these identifiers will help you better gauge the overall health of your business.

ASIN

As an Amazon Seller, you’ve heard of an ASIN, or Amazon Standard Identification Number, which is the unique combination of 10 letters and/or numbers that will easily identify items. When a new product is uploaded to the catalog on Amazon, a new ASIN is created for that product. You can find the ASIN for a product on the product detail page. ASINs will vary for the same product if it’s sold in both the US and other marketplaces. This helps keep track of selling the products in multiple marketplaces.

When a new product is uploaded to the catalog on Amazon, a new ASIN is created for that product. You can find the ASIN for a product on the product detail page. ASINs will vary for the same product if it’s sold in both the US and other marketplaces. This helps keep track of selling the products in multiple marketplaces.

ASINs can be searched for easily just like any other item in the search bar.

ISBN

On the other hand, books do not have ASINs. Instead they have ISBNs, or International Standard Book Numbers, which are unique identifiers for commercial books with a barcode. A book’s ASIN is the same as the ISBN. Each book has an ISBN that identifies it with 10 or 13 numbers, with ISBNs assigned after January 1, 2007 having 13 numbers. The ISBN is usually printed on the back cover of the book.

UPCs, or Universal Product Codes, are a unique 12-digit code assigned to retail packaging to help identify products in the US. UPCs help stores keep track of sales and are comprised of attribute identifiers based on weight of the product, product type, name, etc.

EAN

Europe has its own version of UPCs, called EANs, European Article Numbers. These are 12- or 13-digit numbers for product identification. EANs are obtained from the manufacturer and are required for selling on Amazon. The EAN is the same as the UPC with the exception of the first digit which will be a country code.

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