UK Fashion retailers switch on to GTINs

GS1 UK have announced a great increase in the Apparel, Accessories and Footwear sector membership with a number of key industry players joining – 697 new joiners signed up in the past year.

This increase of 48% brings the total number of GS1 UK apparel members to 2,129 and showcases GS1 UK’s great success in the sector, as it is laying firm foundations for multichannel growth with dedicated programmes to support its new members.

The key driver of this growth is the apparel retailers’ shift away from closed loop supply chains. Retailers and brands are looking to international markets, new ecommerce channels and concession or wholesale partners as a means of achieving growth. When targeting new markets they begin working with more external partners and find that their legacy numbering systems aren’t compatible. By adopting GS1 standards across their entire range, they can mitigate these issues and ensure interoperability on a global scale.

GS1 are often talked about as the supplier of Barcodes, in reality a barcode is simply a machine readable version of the (Global Trade Item Number) GTIN, and that’s these unique numbers that are used to identify products. Identifying products is pretty important for a business and their supply chain, but it becomes imperative that the identifier is unique world wide as soon as you start putting that inventory on the Internet.

Emily Stow at New Look explained: “New Look have been GS1 UK members for a number of years, however recent focus on international growth has meant we needed to explore and understand industry standards. GS1 UK has helped us identify opportunities to streamline operations and improve supply chain processes across several areas of our business to support future growth”.

With marketplaces and Google demanding GTINs to identify products for price comparison and more importantly to make sure that your listings are surfaced in search results, every seller of own branded goods will need to have product identifiers in place. If you need help with this then the best people to call are GS1 as they can supply you a unique valid set of barcodes which will be recognisable across every market around the world.