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Difference between UPC and SKU

Difference between UPC and SKU

There are a few ways to identify products, one of which is through UPC codes and SKU numbers. However, there is often confusion about the difference between these two identifiers. In this blog post, we will explore the key differences between UPCs and SKUs, and how each can be used to uniquely identify a product. We will also discuss some of the benefits of using each type of identifier. By the end of this post, you should have a better understanding of how each code works, and when it is best to use them.

What is UPC?

UPC stands for Universal Product Code. It is a 12-digit number that is used to identify a specific product. UPCs can be found on products ranging from books and clothing to food and electronics. They are typically printed on the barcode label that is affixed to the product. UPCs are used by retailers to track inventory and pricing information. They are also used by manufacturers to keep track of product sales and warranty information. UPCs are an essential part of the modern retail economy, and they play a vital role in keeping businesses organized and efficient.

What is SKU?

SKU is an acronym that stands for “Stock Keeping Unit.” SKUs are assigned to products in order to track inventory and sales. Each SKU is unique and typically consists of a combination of letters and numbers. For example, an SKU for a particular book might be “BK-12345.” In addition to tracking inventory, SKUs can also be used to track marketing campaigns and pricing strategies. For instance, if a retailer is running a promotion for a particular SKU, they can easily track the results of the campaign by looking at sales data for that SKU. As such, SKUs play an important role in supply chain management and retail operations.

Difference between UPC and SKU

UPCs (universal product codes) and SKUs (stock-keeping units) are both unique identifiers used to track inventory, but they serve different purposes. UPCs are used by manufacturers to identify a specific product, and they are typically printed on the product packaging. SKUs, on the other hand, are used by retailers to track inventory levels and pricing information. In most cases, each SKU corresponds to a specific UPC, but it’s also possible for one UPC to be associated with multiple SKUs. For example, a retailer might sell the same product in different sizes or colors, each of which would have its own SKU. Understanding the difference between UPCs and SKUs is essential for anyone who works in retail or manufacturing.


UPC and SKU codes are important for tracking products, but they can also be used for marketing purposes. By understanding the difference between UPC and SKU codes, you can use them to your advantage in your product listings and advertising. At our company, we can help you create accurate product listings with the right codes so that your products stand out from the competition and sell more.

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