The Differences Between EAN-13 and UPC Barcodes

EAN-13 Barcodes and UPC Barcodes are both standardised formats used for encoding product information into a scannable barcode. The primary difference between the two lies in their structure: EAN-13 barcodes consist of 13 digits, while UPC barcodes contain 12 digits. This variation in length is due to the way each type of barcode assigns country codes to products. EAN-13 barcodes are typically used in Australia, Europe and other regions outside of North America, while UPC barcodes are predominantly used in the United States and Canada. 

When it comes to readability and compatibility, EAN-13 and UPC barcodes are interchangeable in most modern scanning systems. However, it's important to note that some retailers or suppliers may have specific requirements regarding which barcode format they prefer to work with. Before making a decision, it's essential to consult with your trading partners and determine whether EAN-13 or UPC barcodes are more widely accepted within your industry. By understanding the differences between these two barcode formats, you can make an informed choice that aligns with your business objectives and supply chain requirements.


Factors to Consider When Choosing Between EAN-13 and UPC Barcodes

When deciding between EAN-13 and UPC barcodes, several factors come into play. Firstly, geographic considerations matter. EAN-13 is more prevalent internationally, while UPC is predominantly used in North America. Therefore, if your products are primarily sold in the United States or Canada, UPC Barcodes might be the more suitable option due to its widespread acceptance. Its dominance in the North American market ensures seamless integration with retail systems and simplifies logistics within the region. 

However, if your business operates on a global scale or targets markets outside of North America, opting for EAN-13 Barcodes could streamline operations and facilitate international distribution. Its broader acceptance in regions such as Europe, Asia, and Australia makes it a versatile choice for businesses with a global footprint or aspirations for international expansion. By choosing EAN-13, you ensure compatibility with various retail systems worldwide, enhancing your product's accessibility and market reach. 

To find out more please visit Barcodes Australia - their team has over 15 years of expertise in the barcode industry both in Australia and globally.