Welcome to GS1 US
The Global Language of Business
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The once distinct line between shopping and buying in physical locations and online has essentially disappeared. Technology has enabled it, and consumer demand has created an unprecedented demand for accurate, authentic information. With each passing day, the content presented to consumers when they are considering products for purchase is more and more likely to be digital.
GS1 US® was approached by leading industry retailers, online marketplaces, manufacturers, search engines, and content providers and asked to facilitate the development of a standardized approach that makes it easier for sellers to list products and makes online search and discovery more consumer-friendly.
Simple Product Listing® (SPL) is a standardized content vocabulary used for communicating basic product classifications and trusted product attributes between brand owners, trading partners, and retailers in order to help increase opportunities forproducts to be discoverable and accurately represented across any channel. The standard is intended to reduce the effort necessary to share product content and to speed the product listing process for both physical and e-commerce marketplaces.
Both GPC and UNSPSC are focused on traditional B2B business processes. SPL has been developed based on B2C principles with consumer-friendly terms that help developers to build algorithmic search on top of the standard with common selection criteria used by shoppers. SPL is intended to complement rather than replace existing classification models.
The “digital shelf” is where consumers go to learn about, compare, and select products for purchase. Retailers, brand owners, and marketplaces need a common language to speed up item setup and digital shelf display time-to-market. SPL brings product presentation integrity to stakeholders by delivering the following benefits:
At GS1 US, we know that trusted product content is critical to driving customer experience and buying decisions. To ensure that products are discoverable and accurately represented across all channels, we are working with industry companies like Best Buy, Bing, Build.com, CNET, Drive Medical, ebay, Gap Intelligence, Gilt, Google, GXS, Kimberly-Clark, Kwikee, Pilgrims, Reckitt Benckiser, Salsify, Target, and Walmart Labs to establish a shared standard for communicating trusted fundamental product attributes between brand owners, trading partners, and retailers in order to increase the opportunities for products to be discoverable and accurately represented across all channels.
Please email SPLfeedback@gs1us.org to connect with a GS1 US representative. We would be happy to provide you with more information.
Product types (PT) are a way of organizing items without attaching them to a rigid hierarchy. Product types accurately summarize what an item is, not where it should be displayed on a shelf or website. Product Types group items based on form, function, and common attributes, and are associated with inclusionary terms and exclusionary terms. Inclusionary terms indicate products, alternate spellings, and synonyms which are included in a specific product type. As an example, for the product type “Bikes,” inclusionary terms may include bicycle, trike, tricycle, and unicycle. Exclusionary terms indicate products which are excluded in a specific product type, and again using the product type “Bikes” example, exclusionary terms may include, dirt bike, go cart, and big wheels.
The GS1 US team is currently collaborating with industry to develop a national U.S. standard. Upon completion, our goal is to submit the work artifact to GS1®, where it will be normalized and globalized within their Global Standards Management Process (GSMP).
The output of this effort will be a common, search-friendly vocabulary that both web and mobile applications can easily understand. Trading partners can use this language to gain efficiencies without losing their ability to create unique consumer experiences with their existing internal systems.
Retailers and brands will save time and frustration by leveraging a single way to list products across all sales platforms to support omni-channel sales.
Technical service providers will be able to reduce the cost and complexity of development and streamline data handling activities as well as create “smarter” search queries that are easier to integrate with consumer facing “front end” systems.
SPL complements, rather than replaces, existing internal product hierarchies by providing a link between trading partners. Companies can maintain their own internal merchandise hierarchies and use SPL as a bridge between trading partners.
Anyone can use this tool. The fundamental purpose of GS1 US initiatives is to assemble a representative cross-section of supply chain leaders to work closely with GS1 US in the development and voluntary individual company adoption/implementation of GS1 Standards—for the purpose of improving data exchange efficiencies, reducing complexities, bettering product information quality, and supporting the development of traceability systems.
As with all GS1 Standards and solutions, the GS1 US Simple Product Listing Standard is voluntary, not mandatory. Trading partner relationships will determine the scope and timing of individual deployments.