So, you need to barcode your products going into supermarkets and shops, what you need to produce are EAN barcodes. The following is a quick guide on how to barcode your products for supermarkets.
Step 1: Register with GS1
You need to register with GS1 who control the company code numbers for EAN barcodes, they will be able to provide the numbers that are required to enable you to print barcodes for your products.
The barcode numbers are made up of a country code, your company code, a product code and a check digit.
Step 2: Design your labels
Decide whether you want to print your barcodes directly onto the product/packaging or onto a label that will be applied to the product.
If you want to print onto labels, decide on the most appropriate size for your products. Using barcode software such as Bartender or Labelview you can design your labels with anything from simply a barcode to a complete product label with image, text, date fields and barcode.
Step 3: Print your labels
Once your label is designed you will need to print them, this is typically done with a barcode label printer but can also be completed with an A4 laser or inkjet printer and laser labels.
There are a vast amount of printers out there but you can normally pick one dependent on the number of labels you need to print, the size of your labels, and the environment in which you are printing.
Once you have your label printer you can connect it to your label software and print your designs.
Step 4: Verify your barcodes
If you are printing for supermarkets they will usually require you to verify the barcodes to ensure that they will scan at the tills in their stores. In order to do this you will need a barcode verifier, most ask for the REA Scancheck barcode verifier to be used. This verifier can be used to either scan every barcode or randomly check barcodes to ensure that they pass barcode reading standards (reported as good, warning or fail). As some supermarkets issue fines for barcodes that fail, the barcode verifier is a key component when supplying large quantities of products into supermarkets.