In 2015, Google began requiring Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs) for products from a list of 50 brands. Going forward into 2016, the requirements for GTINs will expand beyond those 50 brands to include all products with a GTIN assigned by the manufacturer.
Beginning May 16th, merchants targeting Australia, Brazil, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, the UK, or the US, will be required to submit correct GTINs and the corresponding brand for all new, in-stock products that are sold by multiple merchants.
There are a few important dates to keep in mind:
- February 8, 2016: Warnings begin. You’ll see start to see “Missing GTIN” and “Invalid GTIN” warnings in your account for products that don’t meet the requirements. Use these warnings to help you update your product data. Please note that “Coupon code GTIN”, “Restricted usage GTIN” and “Ambiguous GTIN code” will not be enforced.
- May 16, 2016: Disapprovals begin. You’ll start to see disapprovals in your account for products that don’t meet the requirements. After this date, you’ll need to meet the GTIN requirements to continue serving ads for your products.
Types of GTINs
GTINs vary in length depending on the type of product and where the product will be sold. Here are the different GTINs you might encounter:
This type of GTIN is found on products sold in the United States. It’s the 12-digit number below the barcode:
EAN or JAN or ISBN
This type of GTIN is found on products sold in Europe or Japan, plus on books sold worldwide. It’s the 13-digit number below the barcode:
This type of GTIN is found on products that are sold in multipacks, like shipping boxes for example. The GTIN is the 14-digit number below the barcode:
Be sure to review your product feed and add any GTINs for designated brand products before May 16th. After the 16th, designated brand products with missing GTINs will result in your offers being disapproved.