When you first start as an Amazon seller, it takes some time to understand all the processes, requirements, and terminology. In this guide, I will be answering a common terminology-related question: What is seller SKU on Amazon?
Whether you decided on the private label, retail or online arbitrage, SKUs are a requirement.
Let me take you through the specifics.
All You Need to Know about Amazon SKUs
Seller SKU is a unique string of letters and numbers that are assigned to products for tracking purposes.
However, when we refer to the Seller SKU, we refer to the last string assigned to any products sold on Amazon.
Let me explain.
Any product barcode starts with a UPC code, after which it gets an ASIN. Finally, the seller SKU is added at the end.
(Source: Amazon Seller Central)
You should also know that UPCs are not always a requirement – I have gone into detail on this here.
Amazon ASIN Vs Seller SKU: What’s the Difference?
Any new item that is added to Amazon receives an ASIN (Amazon Stock Identifier Number). However, this is not the same as a seller SKU.
An ASIN is what is used to identify a product in a catalog of billions of products. The good news is, Amazon takes care of the ASIN assignment for you. As a seller, you only need to create and manage your seller SKU.
Without seller SKU, you won’t be able to ship your products to an Amazon warehouse.
Once you upload a product to your Amazon store, you will see the ASIN in the Product Information table:
Do I Create My Own Seller SKU or Will Amazon Do It for Me?
The majority of sellers prefer to create their own SKUs. Unfortunately, getting Amazon to do it for you has several downsides, including:
- The format of the seller SKU will be meaningless. In other words, you won’t be able to look at an SKU and know what product it is referring to.
- Sellers who choose to sell identical products on two different Amazon stores will have separate SKUs, which can make inventory tracking far more difficult.
Here is why I recommend creating your own seller SKU:
- It allows you to standardize product references and sales reporting.
- You can easily identify your top-selling products.
- It makes it easier to locate your inventory and reduce picking and packing speeds.
- It is much easier to describe your products to other people in your business.
What Amazon Seller SKU Format Is Best to Use?
A good SKU will immediately give you essential information about a product and inventory.
When creating an SKU, consider what you want it to do for your business in terms of reporting and inventory management.
This is the most common information that sellers include in a SKU is as follows:
- Product category or group
- Attributes such as size or color
- Product seasonality indicators
- The warehouse location of the product
- Product condition
- The purchase or selling price of the product
- The date the product was catalogued
- Product source or supplier
Once you create an SKU format, your business can use it for years to come.
Just keep in mind that an SKU cannot be longer than 40 characters, so consider what information you need carefully.
Seller SKU Best Practices
To ensure your seller SKU does what you intend it to, here are a few of my personal recommendations:
- Make sure each product or product variant has a unique SKU.
- Stick to one SKU format for all products and document the format to ensure everyone is on the same page.
- Be careful with capital letters that could be mistaken for numbers – I being one of them.
- Please don’t start a SKU with a zero as it is known to cause issues with data storing software.
- Avoid symbols and spaces.
Seller SKU and Product Barcodes
In the end, seller SKU is just one element of your Amazon product barcodes and labels. I recommend understanding every aspect of barcodes and labels as a seller.
It will help you in the long run. Trust me!
Have any questions? Please leave them in the comments section below.