EAN – European Article Number

Definition updated on November 2023

What is an EAN (European Article Number) and how is it used in product identification?

A barcode system used internationally to identify products. EAN barcodes are 13 digits long and are used predominantly in retail to ease the scanning and sale of products at points of purchase. Each unique product variant (such as a specific sneaker size and color) gets its own distinct EAN. For sneaker resellers, understanding and utilizing EANs can be pivotal. Firstly, they help in tracking inventory. When a sneaker is listed online with its EAN, it ensures clarity on the exact variant being sold, reducing mistakes or mismatches in orders. Secondly, using the correct EAN can streamline the listing process on many online platforms, as the platform's system can automatically pull in details about the sneaker using the EAN database. This can save the reseller time and ensure accurate product descriptions. However, it's crucial to note that while EANs offer many benefits, they are also critical tools against counterfeiting. Authentic sneakers will have a legitimate and matching EAN, while counterfeit products might not. By checking the EAN, sneaker resellers can take steps to verify the authenticity of products they're sourcing or selling. Overall, the European Article Number is more than just a barcode for sneaker resellers; it's a tool for ensuring accuracy, streamlining online selling processes, and verifying authenticity.

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