Barcodes permit faster and more accurate transfer and recording of information, benefiting the tracking of work in process or the movement of assets more quickly and precisely. Significant time can be spent tracking down the location of assets, instruments, materials, and anything that moves within an area or between companies.
Did you know ? The real-world usage of barcodes has made them much more than a set of lines of different widths.
What Is A Barcode?
A barcode is a set of lines of different widths used to store data. These vertical and parallel lines represent certain numbers that carry some information and can be implemented for many purposes across many industries. They have made global trade much easier and more convenient. Barcode labels are primarily used for the segregation and identification of products. Product codes like UPCs (Universal Product Codes) and Internal SKUs (Stock Keeping Units) can be extracted through them by scanning them with the help of special machines.
Types of Barcodes
There are many different types of barcodes, depending on their use. They are majorly classified into 1-D and 2-D Barcodes. Here are a few different types of barcodes -
European Article Number is used to identify the products (except books and magazines) at the point of sale. EAN -13 – International Article Number also known as European Article Number is a 13-digit number used for barcodes in Europe, India, and other nation
Universal Product Code is used to identify products (except books and magazines) at retail points, predominantly in India, USA and Canada.
Interleaved Two of Five (ITF)codes,also known as Carton codes, are generally used by retailers for the inward tracking of goods. This code is created from EAN and UPCs. They are used for the wholesale quantity of products. For example, you need to use EAS or UPCs for a single bottle of juice, but for a carton full of bottles, you should use ITF codes.
It is commonly known as the book barcode. They are issued by the ISBN agencies of a particular county and used for selling books at the retail level. For self-publishing authors, they can also be obtained from independent publishing agencies.
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They are barcodes used for magazines, newspapers, annuals, etc. They are obtained only from the ISSN International centre.
They are used for assets that need to be constantly tracked, like membership cards or other unique identification systems. Code 39 is used in India and are variable length and are only maintained across a closed system
They are used in the logistics and management of product distribution. Code 128 is used in India and are high-density codes and can store various data, making them excellent choices for shipping or packaging items.
This code is primarily used for the labelling of electronic components. They are completely supported by ASCII and are much shorter and more secure than Code 39.
They are used for tracking in internal inventory systems like libraries. They can be printed easily and can be used for tracking. Due to the ease of checking, they make the tracking system error-free.
They are used for extensive data such as photographs, signatures, etc. They are a type of 2-D barcode and are much more efficient than other 2-D barcodes. They have applications in multiple sectors, including inventory management.
It is a type of 2-D matrix barcode commonly used for encoding web links and other URLs and doesn't require any high-tech systems for scanning. A smartphone camera can quickly scan them. Apart from the barcode mentioned above, there are many others, like the GS-1 DataBar, MS1 Plessey, etc.
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What is the Use of a Barcode?
Barcodes are used worldwide across almost all industries for various purposes. Their versatile nature has made them useful in any industry.
Here are a few use cases of barcode labels
Many companies face the issue of warehouse management. Companies need to stay updated about their current inventory levels and the products' location. Barcode labels turn out to be an effective method of solving this issue. Companies can implement barcode scanning systems in warehouses to keep track of the current inventory in the warehouse.
Internal Asset Tracking
The different departments of a company use various assets that can be easily tracked down with the help of barcode labels and a software tool. It can help to easily identify the most used resource by a particular department and help the company to plan its resources accordingly.
Barcode labels have changed the entire functioning of the retail industry. They have made various retail processes like stock checking, listing product entries, calculating the price of items, etc., much easier and more convenient for businesses. The retail industry has swiftly shifted from traditional cashing methods to modern barcode labelling systems.
Marketing and Feedback
It may be surprising, but nowadays, QR code (a type of matrix barcode) is used to market various products. Along with marketing, they are also used for collecting valuable customer feedback. Customers can easily scan QR codes with their smartphones and directly connect with the company.
QR codes have changed the way people used to make payments. They have made cashless payments very easy for the common people. Mobile banking and many other apps operate with the help of QR codes. Cashless payments have now become ‘Scan and Pay’ for people.
What are the Benefits of using Barcodes?
There are several benefits of using barcodes in commercial sectors. Here are a few advantages of barcodes:
Barcodes are very useful methods for cost-cutting. Due to their easy scan and access nature, they are versatile and sustainable in the industry. They help to reduce labour costs and help them to master the required skills in a very short period.
Barcode labels have removed the chances of human errors, especially from tracking systems. They have made such systems much more efficient and convenient. They are fast and reliable over traditional tracking and labelling systems.
Inventory data can be managed best with the help of Barcode labels. They make inventory tracking much more precise and help to bring accuracy to the system. They also help to track the accurate location of inventory, thus making the system further efficient.
Barcode systems eliminate the risks of human errors and help collect the data at more rapid and accurate rates. They are easily scannable and fast, and their versatile nature makes them compatible with any use.
How To Make A Barcode?
Now that we know all about barcodes, we shall learn how to make a barcode.
Step - 1: Identifying and Creating Product Codes
The first step of this process involves identifying your products and creating product codes according to them. You can assign products according to the product and the type of business you run. Depending on the commodity type, it may be UPC, EAN, or an ISBN code. It is important because product codes provide your products with a unique identity and make them easily identifiable from the rest.
Step - 2: Converting Codes to Barcodes
Once you have your product codes ready with you, you can now start to convert them into scannable barcodes and use them on your products. You can use multiple free online barcode generators. You can enter your codes on these websites and easily convert them into working barcodes.
Step - 3: Printing Barcodes
The final step is to print your barcodes on labels and bring them into use. You need label sheets and laser or inkjet printers (if you don’t have to print barcode labels frequently). Thermal printers might be the best option if you have to print many barcode labels daily. They can print at very fast rates compared to laser and inkjet printers. You can convert your saved Barcodes from Step 2 into a document and start printing them on label sheets to use them.
Portable barcode printers might be an excellent choice if you have only mobile or small operations. They allow you to enter your product codes and directly print a barcode label within no time. They are quite expensive, but they take the win in portability and convenience.
If you don’t have a printing service available, many online barcode generators allow you to order the barcode labels printed on label sheets, but that comes at a price. So if you want the same barcode labels in bulk, this might be your best option. Generally, the shipments are on-time and the service provided is good.
Barcodes have brought modernization to many industries, especially the retail industry. They have entirely changed cashless payments in India. Cashless payments are now equivalent to QR codes in many parts of the county. They have bought even the smallest vendors and common people into digital cash flow. Barcodes can now be daily generated and used with the help of online barcode generators for free. We hope this article might have helped you learn something new about barcode labels.
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