Why are eBay Required Product Identifiers (GTIN, UPC, EAN, MPN) important?

Changes implemented by eBay on February 29, 2016, require that all sellers include Product Identifiers for new and refurbished items in certain categories. It’s highly recommended that all eBay sellers add such Required Product Identifiers to items wherever they apply.

How will my items be affected after February 29?

Items with missing Required Product Identifiers (MPN, GTINs, UPCs and ISBNs) will not be renewed, meaning these items will not be ended on February 29. However, as of March 1, whenever they are due for renewal (1, 3, 7, 10, 30 days) eBay will not renew them.

Do I have to adjust my international listings?

WebInterpret clients benefit from a free, automated service that modifies internationally translited items as follows:

  1. If the original item includes an identifier – WebInterpret will add the original item’s Required Product Identifier (MPN, GTIN, UPC or ISBN) to the translisted international item.
  2. If the original item doesn’t include an identifier WebInterpret will set “Does not apply” in the appropriate field when creating the translisted item.

Once you have updated your original listings, the changes will be applied automatically to your WebInterpret translistings.

Important: Items with “Does not apply” will eventually lose sales. We urge sellers to update all original items with missing product identifiers.

What are Product Identifiers?

Product identifiers are unique codes typically found on labels or bar codes. They are used in retail to track and manage stock.

eBay uses item brands, Manufacturer Part Numbers (MPN), and Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs), such as Universal Product Codes (UPCs) and International Standard Book Numbers (ISBNs), to help buyers quickly find the items they’re looking for.

What are the benefits of using them on eBay?

In eBay’s case, Product Identifiers make it easier for buyers to find what they are looking for in specific categories. They also have the following benefits:

  • Help improve placement in search engines like Google and Bing
  • Make your items eligible for inclusion in more deals and promotions
  • Prepare your items for future enhancements, such as new product reviews
  • Make pricing more accurate when listing items
  • Make listing information and item specifics more robust by automatically matching your items with products in eBay’s catalog
  • Alert you when your listings are priced lower than the trending price

Adding Product Identifiers

Sellers are obliged to add Product Identifiers to the original items, not the ones translated by WebInterpret. Your modification will be applied to the localized listings within a few hours. You must add the Product Identifier in the appropriate field as shown below:


You can add product identifiers to your existing listings using the drop-down menus found in eBay’s bulk listing and editing tool.


How to update multi-variation items?

Please bear the following in mind:

  • Brand needs to be added at item level (not in the variation)
  • EAN/UPC and MPN numbers need to be added at variation level
  • If you don’t have the values you can also add “unbranded” for Brand and “Does not apply” for EAN & MPN

How to find Product Identifiers

Most manufacturers list identifiers like MPN and GTIN directly on a product or packaging. Remember, when you match your item with a product in the eBay catalog, the unique identifiers for your item are included automatically in your listing. Below are a few examples of product identifiers.

UPC Code:


Above is ISBN:


MPN code:


Item categories that require Product Identifiers

For more information about Product Identifier requirements, including categories, please read this official eBay article.