+1 800 967-0030

What is a UPC code?

Modern warehousing is the result of an intricate dance between suppliers and distributors.

Almost like magic, both groups manage to keep near-perfect track of their part, be it providing new inventory as it runs low or plucking individual pieces from a sea of products. A lot of the success of this tango is due to the use of Universal Product Codes (UPCs). In fact, warehousing and distribution centers would be very different places without these nifty little codes.

How Do UPCs Help Product Fulfillment?

Everybody knows where to find the UPC on their favorite products, often because they’ve had to clip them for rebates or warranties. Fewer people realize that those little codes are like the Social Security Numbers of merchandise. Applied at manufacturing, the UPC tracks products throughout their lifecycle.

UPCs make it possible to house hundreds of thousands of products in a single warehouse environment. In many warehouses, products are divided into bins for distribution, each tagged with the UPC of the item inside. When the worker or inventory robot responsible for selecting merchandise for orders needs to locate an item, they need only choose it in the warehousing software to pinpoint its location.

Once at the correct bin, the UPC can be used to check items into and out of inventory, reducing loss and increasing inventory accuracy. It’s also a helpful check to ensure that the correct item has been selected, since the UPC will be visible on the product packaging.

Warehousing Without UPCs

A warehouse without unique tracking codes like UPCs would be a chaotic place. You’d have to be very careful about labeling products, especially if you sold a lot of things that looked very similar, like pharmaceuticals or nutraceuticals. Even then, errors would be commonplace and you’d spend even more money trying to deal with returns. In short, without UPCs, warehousing is a costly and frustrating business.

UPCs and portable barcode scanners make modern warehousing and distribution inexpensive and allow companies to expand their product offerings exponentially. Without having to rely on visual inspections and struggle with similar-sounding names, you can be confident that your products only go where they’re wanted.

Without the ivories and ebonies of the UPC, it would be impossible to maintain a significant amount of inventory at any given location or feel confident our online orders will always arrive perfectly picked. They’ve revolutionized business since the first UPC was scanned in 1974. From the factory to the warehouse and beyond, they give us a simple way to track an enormous array of products.

 

April 28, 2015
Share This:

Related Posts

RECENT POSTS

Scroll, Click, Buy: How to Sell On Instagram

Do you have an Instagram shop? Instagram Shopping is quickly becoming the preferred way for consumers not only to learn about new brands and products on Instagram, but also to purchase them in just a few simple steps. If you are not already selling directly on...

New Year, New You?

Every year, millions of people make New Year’s resolutions, hoping to spark positive change, adopt new habits, or even reinvent themselves. The recurring themes each year include a more active approach to health and fitness, improved finances, better relationships,...

Grow Your e-Commerce Business in 2023

Win at E-commerce in 2023 Starting an e-commerce business has never been easier. But with a low barrier to entry, there is plenty of competition as well. If you have set your sights on growing your e-commerce business, you know that small adjustments can add up to...

Holiday-Proof Your Website

According to the National Retail Federation, holiday sales for 2022 are expected to increase between 6% and 8% over 2021. Furthermore, NRF predicts that online and other non-store sales will increase between 10% and 12% to between $262.8 billion and $267.6 billion....

Fulfillment Services in Fort Lauderdale, FL

3PL Services Serving Fort Lauderdale, FL If your e-commerce business is based in or near Fort Lauderdale, FL, chances are, you are familiar with the benefits of third-party fulfillment services near you. World famous for its expansive canals, Fort Lauderdale is loved...