GS1 DataBar Coupon Barcodes

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The acceptance of coupons has become commonplace for many retailers. To improve efficiency and accuracy, barcode symbols are included on the face of the coupon.  As barcoding technology has evolved, so has the use of  barcodes on coupons.  Originally, coupon barcodes were encoded in a UPC format.   The original coupon barcode looked very similar to the UPC barcodes on products, but started with a “5”.    US retailers began accepting  the GS1 DataBar Coupon barcode in a transitional format  in 2011 and today the final GS1 DataBar Coupon barcode format is acceptable at all the major stores.

 

 GS1 DataBar Coupon Format

GS1 DataBar (formerly known as RSS or Reduced Space Symbology)  was formally adopted by the global supply chain in January 2011 and is currently the most commonly used barcode format used on coupons.

Benefits

  • GS1 Company Prefixes. The previous structure only allowed companies with a 6-digit prefix the ability to coupon. The new format can accommodate variable length prefixes.
  • Coupon value codes can now be in any amount up to $999.99, and they are not limited to a table of only 100 possibilities.
  • Precise offer descriptions and validation of offers involving specified quantity purchases can now be expressed.
  • Fraud reduction due to complexity of description and save values. Also, the entire barcode encoded data is not presented in human readable format.
  • Automatic expiration date checking for retailers..

The greater dimensional efficiency combined with the ability to encode additional data opens the doors for creating trade solutions that greater support product identification, traceability, quality control, and more flexible coding for coupon applications. Recognizing implementation challenges by both retailers and manufacturers, an interim version of the format included a proceeding UPC Coupon barcode.  The final GS1 DataBar Coupon format does not require the UPC component.

Interim DataBar Coupon

interim

Current DataBar Coupon

Databar Infographic

 UPC Components 

  • U.P.C Prefix 5 –  UPC Coupon Codes begin with U.PC. Prefix 5. This prefix indicates the barcode is a coupon when scanned at point of sale. *The GS1 DataBar Coupon barcode format replaced the U.P.C. Prefix 5 Coupon format in 2011.
  • Manufacture ID  – This field is limited to only 5 digits of the U.P.C. Company Prefix. Positions 2-6 of the U.P.C. Company Prefix should be encoded as the manufacture ID.
  • Family Code –   The manufacturer assigns family codes to each of their products. This three digit number is completely different from the item reference used on an item, since many coupons are redeemable on more than one size, color, or form of particular branded product. The family code is the key to validating that a consumer has purchased a qualifying family of products.
  • Save Value –  The Cents Off or Save Value represents the redemption value of the coupon.
  • Check Digit  – The 12th digit of any UPC symbol is the check digit.  Using a MOD10 check digit algorithm, the calculated check digit prevents substitution errors.

DataBar Components 

  • Application ID (AI) – AI (8110) identifies the barcode is a coupon when scanned at point of sale.
  • Primary GS1 Company Prefix – The GS1 Company Prefix is a 7-10 digit number assigned by GS1 to uniquely identify ownership of a particular brand. Click here to validate your GS1 Company Prefix. In the DataBar, the Funder is the entity who will be billed for the offer during the clearing process. This is typically the manufacturer of the offered product.  In the event of joint effort coupons, the participating companies must determine which Company Prefix will be used.
  • Offer Code  – Six digit number assigned by the manufacturer to identify the specific offer. This number is often provided by a clearing house, however if there is no clearing house involved, this number can be created internally.
  • Save Value – The redemption value of the coupon and must be encoded without decimals. Two decimal places are already assumed. E.g – A discount for $1.99 should be encoded simply as 199.
  • Primary Purchase Requirement – The quantity a consumer must purchase to receive the Save Value. For example with a buy 1 get 1 free offer, the customer must have 2 items present at the cash register, therefore the primary purchase requirement would be 2.
  • Primary Purchase Requirement Code– This indicates the type of value involved in the offer, whether its number of units, percent of transaction, kilograms or pounds. The most common value is Number of Units.
  • Primary Purchase Family Code –  A 3 digit number assigned by the manufacture to identify all of the products involved in the  offer. This number is often provided by a clearing house, however if there is no clearing house involved, this number can be created internally.

 Optional Fields 

2nd Purchase Requirement – The second quantity a consumer must purchase to receive the Save Value.

2nd Purchase GS1 Company Prefix – Used for complex offers to identify a second manufacture.

2nd Purchase Family Code – Identifies a second family code.

3rd Purchase Requirement The third quantity a consumer must purchase to receive the Save Value.

3rd Purchase GS1 Company Prefix – Used for complex offers to identify a third manufacture.

3rd Purchase Family Code – Identifies a third family code.

Serial Number – A unique serial number can be added to dynamically printed databar coupons. The serial number can sometimes reflect individual households or geographic areas. This field is not normally used on traditionally printed coupons and inserts.

Retailer GS1 Company Prefix or GLN – The company prefix should be submitted if the coupon offer is being created by a store, rather than a manufacturer.

Start Date – The first date the coupon can be redeemed. This date is to be entered in the format: YYMMDD.

Expiration Date – Date coupon expires. This date is to be entered in the format: YYMMDD.

Don’t Multiply Flag – The multiply flag limits the discount offer to one use per coupon or allows it to be re-used.

Bar Code Graphics offers utilities to both Decode & Encode DataBar Coupon information:

GS1 Databar Coupon Decoder GS1 Databar Coupon Encoder

 

 

GS1 Databar Coupon Sizing Range

 

GS1DatabarMinChart_oursizes_1

 

The DataBar Coupon is capable of encoding an extremely large amount of information. Consequently, it is impossible to specify exact spacing requirements due to numerous possibilities of data encodation. The illustration above provides the ranges for the final GS1 DataBar Coupon with the minimum amount of data. The width of the barcode will increase as more data is encoded.

 

 

 

DataBar Coupon Decoder and Encoder

Bar Code Graphic offers an online Decoder and Encoder.

The Decoder utility provides a breakdown of the data characteristics encoded in the symbol. This data will normally be provided by a barcode scanner and the first 4-digits will begin with 8110.

Click Here for the DataBar Decoder

The Encoder utility provides the DataBar coupon data string from the entered field data.

Click Here for the DataBar Encoder

Legacy Coupon Formats

UPC Coupon Codes were commonly used between 1997-2011 and are still in limited use.  Today the Databar Coupons have supplanted UPC Coupons, however there may be some still in use.

UPC Coupon

Components of the UPC Coupon Code

  • U.P.C Prefix 5 –  UPC Coupon Codes begin with U.PC. Prefix 5. This prefix indicates the barcode is a coupon when scanned at point of sale. *The GS1 Databar Coupon barcode format replaced the U.P.C. Prefix 5 Coupon format in 2011.
  • Manufacture ID  – This field is limited to only 5 digits of the U.P.C. Company Prefix. Positions 2-6 of the U.P.C. Company Prefix should be encoded as the manufacture ID.
  • Family Code –   The manufacturer assigns family codes to each of their products. This three digit number is completely different from the item reference used on an item, since many coupons are redeemable on more than one size, color, or form of particular branded product. The family code is the key to validating that a consumer has purchased a qualifying family of products.
  • Cents Off –  The Cents Off or Save Value represents the redemption value of the coupon.
  • Check Digit  – The 12th digit of any UPC symbol is the check digit. Using a MOD10 check digit algorithm, the calculated check digit prevents substitution errors.

GS1-128 Coupon Extended Code

UPC Coupon Extended

  • Application ID (AI)  – (8101) is used for GS1-128 Extended Coupon Codes which encode a U.P.C. Prefix, Offer Code, and Expiration Date.
  • UPC Prefix – Only the first digit of the U.P.C. Company Prefix is encoded in the GS1-128 Extended Coupon Code.
  • Offer Code  – Five digit number assigned by the manufacturer to identify the specific offer.
  • Expiration Date – The expiration date of the offer in MMYY format (i.e. 07/16).

Value Codes

*Note: The GS1 Databar Coupon barcode is the current format for coupons and encodes the actual save value.

couponValue

 

  • UPC (GTIN-12)

  • ISBN/Books

  • Medical/UDI

  • Supply Chain

  • Assets/Inventory

  • Coupon

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UPC (GTIN-12)

There are a variety of different types of barcodes. However, the UPC (Universal Product Number) symbol is the most recognized barcode in the United States, since it appears on almost every retail product. The UPC symbol is the barcode representation of the GTIN-12 which consists of twelve numeric characters that uniquely identify a company’s individual product. The GTIN-12 number is part of the family of GS1 global data structures that employ 14 digits and can be encoded into various types of data carriers.

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ISBN/Books

A requirement for selling a book through booksellers, wholesalers, and distributors is the assignment of unique ISBN numbers for each title and for each book to be marked with a Bookland EAN barcode. The Bookland symbol allows for encodation of ISBNs (the numbers publishers use to identify their products). Since an ISBN is unique to one particular title (or product), the corresponding Bookland EAN symbol is a title-specific marking which is unique for that title. For example, if a title is available in hard cover, soft cover and as an e-book, three unique ISBN Bookland EAN bar codes are required.

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Medical/UDI

The FDA UDI Mandate is part of a comprehensive healthcare traceability initiative to improve patient safety.  The Unique Device Identifier (UDI) requirement is rooted in holding each member of the supply chain responsible for ensuring each medical device is marked with a UDI barcode with data maintained on the FDA’s GUDID universal database.

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Supply Chain

Logistic barcodes such as the GS1-128 Shipping Label are used to track movement of a shipment within a supply chain.  Since suppliers are making shipments to a variety of trading partners it is essential to integrate the relevant standards and current technology.  The use of EDI and 2D barcodes which can encode much more data has transformed many supply chains.

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Assets/Inventory

The first step in designing an asset tracking system is to determine whether you are working with assets or inventory.  Assets are any items a company uses internally such as tools, equipment, furniture etc.  Inventory are items which are sold, distributed or used by a company.  The distinction between Assets and Inventory is essential in regards to how the items will be marked, scanned and stored.

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Coupon

The successful integration of GS1 DataBar Coupons has dramatically improved many promotions.  The interhent features including; value codes and automatic expiration date checking for retailers, has enabled more efficient redemption, much better security and better metrics to measure the performance of a campaign.

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Brands We Work With

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  • Caterpillar
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