Does barcode have to be unique

Jason28
New Member
4 0 0

Hi there,

I am very interested in the POS system and it is probably the best solution for our case.

We are a bookstore selling used books. Basically most books are labelled with a barcode which is the ISBN. I am thinking making the book with the same ISBN as a product in shopify and each copy as a variant in shopify. The prices of copies of the same book can vary based on condition and other factors, and that's why I can't put all copies in one variant.

My concern is that will result in two or more variants sharing the same barcode. Is there any problem when scanning such barcode in POS system? I hope in that case the POS can narrow down the variants with the scanned barcode and let our staff choose which one to be sold.

BWT, I am a programer so feel free to use any technical terms. Any idea will be appreciated.

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Andrew_Paliga
Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
233 0 29

Hi Jason,

If you have multiple products with the same barcode, our POS will only add the first one that was created to the cart. 

Alternatively, you can associate SKU's with all of your book variants. You can then use our search to drill down on specific SKUs.

Hope this helps,

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Jason28
New Member
4 0 0

Hi Andrew

Thank you for the suggestion. It's possible to assign unique SKU to all book variants (actually we've already done this and we wrote the SKU in book using pencil). However, because the only barcode on book is ISBN but not SKU, we can't utilize the barcode scanner and have to use "Search" function (i.e. type SKU manually). I am afraid this is not a quick sale process.

So I guess the only way to make it work is to use barcode printer to print SKU and stick on each book, so that the barcode (i.e. SKU) is unique. This is not a good approach because we don't want to stick any label and damage the books. And this also increases the cost.

I hope there will be better solution.

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Andrew_Paliga
Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
233 0 29

Hi Jason,

We'll definitely keep this use case in mind. From what I understand, you would like our app to:

1) Scan a barcode

2) If the barcode has multiple matches --> display them all 

3) Allow the user to select the specific variant they want from a list

4) Add to cart

Correct?

Jason28
New Member
4 0 0

Hi Andrew

Your idea sounds perfect to me. Look foward to such feature. Cheers!

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Tarek_Shaer
Excursionist
28 0 10

hey shopify!

is it possible to toggle between the "barcode languages" in your barcode-printer app? we need to be able to use "code128" (alphanumeric) which some apps are using/supporting. in addition we need the possibility to display up to 16 characters; at the moment - when a barcode is too long - it won't be printed with the rest of the label... thanks for your feedback/help!

best
T

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Andrew_Paliga
Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
233 0 29

Hi Tarek,

The best thing to do for such customizations is to export your products into your Dymo Label software: http://docs.shopify.com/pos/about-pos/barcode-printing/custom-barcode-labels

This will let you print any barcodes you desire. 

Hope this helps,

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Tarek_Shaer
Excursionist
28 0 10

thanks for your prompt reply andrew. i actually know the workaround via dymo's software. it is somewhat cumbersome however, since you can only print 1 copy-runs of each barcodelabel. i just wondered if this might be possible within your app anytime soon... cheers T

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Jason28
New Member
4 0 0

Hi Andrew

I wonder when this feature (allow same barcode) will be available? This will be crucial to our implementation.

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Andrew_Paliga
Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
233 0 29

Hi Jason,

Unfortunately, I cannot provide an estimate for you at this time. It's difficult for us to prioritize this feature until there is a larger number of our merchants asking for it. 

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