Preparation for Printing GS1-128 Barcode Shipping Labels

GS1-128 barcode labels must match the associated ASN (Advance Ship Notice). See my blog post “ASN’s and You” from September 25, 2012 for an explanation of how the ASN’s and labels work together.

The next few paragraphs discuss the preparation that is required before you are able to properly print barcode shipping labels.

GS1 Company Prefix

If your trading partner or customer requires you to print GS1-128 barcode shipping labels (formerly called UCC-128), you will be required to have a GS1 company prefix. The company prefix is assigned by a non-profit organization called GS1-US. You can find them at

We will need to know your number in order to add it to our system and have it filled in automatically for you.

Printer Hardware

Our service provides ready-to-print labels. You can use any printer. However, you will need to use blank label stock that conforms to the size of label that your customer requires. Most partners want the label to be 4 inches by 6 inches. We support any size label your partner may require.

The label must be printed clearly and the label needs to not be smeared when it arrives on the carton at your customer’s loading dock. You customer may assess a charge back if the label cannot be scanned.

Many of our clients use a thermal barcode label printer because it produces a durable label by virtue of printing with heat rather than ink. The most popular brand is a Zebra Thermal Label Printer. It is a high quality printer and is used successfully by many of our clients. If you are interested in learning more a Zebra printer you can visit their website

Printer Testing

Before printing labels you must have the correct printer hardware installed. It is a very good idea to allow some time to trouble shoot your hardware. We recommend that you test printing labels a few times well in advance of your first ship date and before printing the actual labels.

Printer Configuration and Maintenance

The proper configuration and maintenance of your printer is required to ensure your labels print accurately. You need to have your printer correctly configured by selecting the right printer in the device menu.

You must also maintain your printer correctly so that the quality of the labels remains high as you send out shipments. See the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintenance.

Preparation for Printing GS1-128 Barcode Shipping Labels by

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