Do You Need to Barcode All Your Products to Use a WMS?

Learn about different barcode types and how to get started with barcoding your products.

March 22, 2023

Barcode warehouse

Warehouse management systems (WMS) are game-changers in the world of supply chain operations. They help businesses big and small get their inventory management, order fulfilment, and shipping game on point. But one question often pops up: Do you have to barcode all your products to use a WMS?

The short answer? Yes! Barcoding is the secret sauce that makes a WMS work its magic. In this article, we’ll discuss why barcoding is essential, the different types of barcodes used in WMS, and how to get the ball rolling with barcoding your products.

Man barcoding products.

Why Barcoding is Critical for WMS

There are a few reasons why barcoding and WMS are a match made in heaven:

Spot-On Inventory Tracking: Barcodes let the WMS keep tabs on your products moving in and out of the warehouse. When a product arrives or leaves, you scan the barcode and update the WMS database. Voilà! Your inventory levels are always on point.

Speedy Picking Processes: Barcoding makes picking a breeze. Instead of hunting for products, pickers scan the barcodes and quickly find what they need. This speeds up order fulfilment, boosts productivity, and reduces mistakes.

Data Galore: Barcodes help your WMS collect tons of data about your products and inventory. You can use this info to spot trends and make smart business moves, like figuring out which products are flying off the shelves and which ones aren’t.

Barcode Types in WMS

There are a few barcode types that work well with WMS:

UPC Barcodes: These 12-digit codes are the go-to barcodes for retail and e-commerce. They’re unique to each product and used all over the world. They’re pretty much the gold standard for product identification in retail.

EAN Barcodes: EAN barcodes are like UPC’s European cousin. Their 13-digit codes are primarily used in Europe. EAN barcodes work just like UPC barcodes and can be swapped out for each other.

Code 128 Barcodes: These linear barcodes can hold data loads, like product info, serial numbers, and more. They’re perfect for industries that need to store more data than UPC or EAN barcodes can handle.

How to Barcode Your Products

Getting started with barcoding isn’t too tricky. First, grab a barcode scanner and some barcode labels. You can find these online or at your local office supply store. Start by barcoding your best-selling products. You can add more products to the system as you get into using the WMS.

Make sure each barcode is unique to each product. This will help you avoid mix-ups and keep your WMS tracking the right stuff.

Summing up

To sum it all up, barcoding is the secret ingredient for a WMS to work like a charm. Getting started with barcoding your products is a piece of cake, and the advantages of a WMS with barcode power make it worthwhile. From on-point inventory tracking and swift picking processes to data-driven insights, a WMS with barcoding will keep your business running like a dream.

Now, if you’re thinking of bringing a WMS into your business, make sure you pick one with barcoding capabilities, like Clarus WMS. With the right system by your side, you’ll level up your inventory management and order fulfilment game for smooth sailing and top-notch efficiency. So, go on and give your business the barcode boost it deserves!

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