Barcodes Overview Guide

By Wilson | Updated



Manufacturer’s Barcodes
           UPC-A Barcodes
           UPC-E Barcodes
           EAN-13 Barcodes
           Code128 Barcodes
PLU Barcodes
           Sold by Weight
Price Embedded Barcodes
Create Item on Unmatched Barcode
Auto-Generated Barcodes



Barcodes are widely used in all businesses to quickly ring up items at the cash register or check inventory stock. Generally, they are set of lines that wary in width which, when scanned, will pull up a product’s information, indicating the price, name, and other details of the product, and add it instantly to the order.

There are several different barcodes that Revel Systems is designed to deal with, including but not limited to, UPC-A barcodes, EAN-13 barcodes, PLU barcodes, and barcodes printed from a Zebra LP2824 Plus printer. This article will discuss each of the barcodes in brief detail, as well as explain how barcodes are read through Revel.


When setting up your system to read barcodes, make sure that you have the following settings enabled under Settings > Settings (Advanced) > Advanced POS Settings on your management console:

Barcode Access – this will allow the system to communicate with your barcode scanner.

Manufacturer’s Barcodes 

Products that are purchased from vendors will frequently come with a manufacturer’s barcode. There are several different kinds of barcodes, but we have listed below the most frequently used barcodes that Revel Systems can handle.

UPC-A Barcodes

Sample UPC-A Barcodes

This fixed length, numeric only symbol must contain 12 digits. The most common barcode for retail items in the United States and Canada.

NOTE: the second picture in the example above shows an additional UPC-2 mini-barcode. This is often used on magazines and periodicals to indicate an issue number. By default, scanners are not configured to scan second UPC-2 barcode. Please refer to the manufacturer's manual on how to read the additoinal

Revel Systems will NOT read the second UPC-2 barcode. When uploading products into the system, you should ONLY enter the twelve digits at the bottom of the barcode.

UPC-E Barcodes

Sample UPC-E Barcodes

This fixed length, numeric only symbol is a compressed version of the UPC-A to allow use of UPC barcodes on smaller packages where a full 12-digit barcode may not fit. All barcodes must contain eight digits and because the UPC-E is used for the number system zero, all symbols must begin with a zero.


Sample EAN-13 Barcodes

This fixed length, numeric only symbol is similar to the UPC-A, but encodes 13 characters instead of 12.

The leading digit of EAN-13 barcodes also indicate the country in which the company that sells the product is based (which may or may not be the same as the country in which the good is manufactured). 


Sample Code128 Barcodes

This is an alphanumeric symbol capable of encoding digits 0-9, upper and lowercase letters A-Z and all standard ASCII symbols.  Code 128 is variable length, the more characters, the larger the symbol will be.

Note that Revel Systems is able to handle alphanumeric barcodes if they are associated with a particular product. In the example above, if “Barcode,” “FF100,” or “5254” is entered for any product, and the above barcodes are scanned, it will bring up that product.

Price embedded barcodes following the EAN-13 standard can support prices up to 999.99 as they have 5 digits that represent the price in the barcode.
Here is how a standard EAN-13 price embedded barcode looks like:
​​ ​​
We can divide this barcode into different parts as follows:
20 - leading check digits that flag the barcode as price embedded.
12345 - PLU of the product.
10959 - Price of the item, in this case it is 109.59.
9 - checksum digit automatically calculated and added by the scale.

As you can see, EAN-13 price embedded barcode standard slightly differs from UPC-A in that it has to lead with 20 instead of 2 and does not have the check digit in the middle for the PLU. This setup is ideal if you need your barcodes to contain prices that are higher than 99.99.

PLU Barcodes

Sample PLU Barcodes

Price Look-Up Codes, also known are PLU codes or PLU barcodes, are identification numbers that are fixed to produce items in order to make check-out and inventory control easier, faster, and more accurate. PLU Codes are usually four digits long with numbers ranging from 3000-4999, however, there may be a fifth leading digit added for some “non-conventionally grown” products, such as a 9 for organic produce or 8 for genetically modified produce. 

Regardless of the length of the PLU, Revel Systems will be able to process these kinds of products on the POS if you do not wish to navigate through your menu (usually for clients whose product offering is very large). Using the apple as an example, upload the product manually into the system or by using the Excel spreadsheet (for more information on how to do so, please visit the Basic Setup – Products page). The PLU code for that particular product should be entered in the Barcode field.

Once the PLU code is entered and saved, refresh all iPads to update the product information. Then, log into the POS Station, and tap on the Enter Barcode button. When the Enter Barcode window appears, enter the PLU of the product.

Once the PLU is entered, press OK, and the item will populate on the order screen. From here, you can adjust the quantity of the product (if someone wished to purchased two or more apples) on the Item Details screen on the right-hand side.

Sold by Weight

Some clients may wish to sell their produce by weight as opposed to individually. To do so, make sure that the Sold by Weight option is checked off under the Product Details screen on the backend for that particular product. Make sure that the Price of the product reflects the price per pound.


Then, following the same steps as in the previous example, refresh the iPads, log in, and press Enter Barcode on the POS. In the Enter Barcode window, enter the PLU code for the product. If you have a scale that is connected to the POS, it will read the weight of the product placed on the scale.

Note: Remember that this is the alternative option if you do not wish to navigate through the menu for the product. Tapping on the product on the right-hand side will also populate the scale reading if Sold by Weight is enabled for the product.

Scale Reading

Product Added to Order

Price Embedded Barcodes

Sample Price Embedded Barcode

Price Embedded barcodes are related to PLU codes inasmuch as it is primarily used for unpackaged items, namely deli products such as meat and cheese. Clients with a deli department will usually have a deli scale of their own where they will punch in the PLU code for that particular product on that scale, weigh it, and then print out a price embedded barcode from the scale and attached it to the wrapped product. This product with the price embedded price code is then brought to the cashier and rung up on the POS.

Using the sample barcode above as an example, the price embedded barcode consists of five parts:

2 00001 8 0754 1

2 – this is the leading check digit (flags the barcode as price embedded)
00001 – this is the PLU of the product (note that it HAS to be programmed as FIVE digits)
8 – check digit of the PLU
0754 – the price of the product (here, $7.54)
1 – the check digit of the price

To have this read by the POS and be recognized as the All Natural Uncured Ham product, make sure that you check off both Price Embedded and Sold by Weight in the product’s details, as well as the unit price per pound (in this example, $3.99). Input the five digit PLU into the Barcode field as well.


Once you have this information entered, hit Save, and refresh all the iPads for the settings to take effect.

Note: Currently, there are no deli scales (scales that print out price embedded barcodes) that are directly integrated with Revel’s backend. Clients will have to program the deli scales as well with the PLU codes and Unit Price for the barcode to print properly and be accurately read by the POS.

Create Item on Unmatched Barcode

If you would like to use the POS to upload your products onto the backend, you can facilitate loading those products by enabling Create Item on Unmatched Barcode. You can do this by logging into your management console and clicking on the Settings tab. From there, navigate to Settings (Advanced) > Retail Service Settings, and scroll down to Create Item on Unmatched Barcode. Check the box, and scroll down and hit Save.

Once saved, refresh the iPads for the setting to take effect.

On the POS, scan an item that has yet to be uploaded to the backend. If the barcode does not exist in the database, it will prompt the user to add the item by inputting a name and price, as well as other basic options such as whether the product is subject to the prevailing tax, weighted, or price-embedded. The last option, Save to Server, will upload that product to the backend along with the price and other settings under the Category and Sub-Category AdditionalItems.


Added Item on the Management Console

If you wish to place the added item into a different category, click on the pencil button for the Product Details, and select the Category/Sub-Category that you would like to place the item under.

Auto-Generated Barcodes

If you have uploaded your products manually onto the system, or uploaded them through the Excel spreadsheet using SKUs, you have the ability to automatically assign valid UPC-A barcodes to all your products. If you are going to use a Zebra Label Printer to print out barcodes for products that do not come with manufacturers’ barcodes, we highly suggest using this auto-generated barcode feature.


To generate these barcodes, log into your management console and navigate to the Products tab. There, click on Extras on the left-hand side, select Products and Barcodes, and click Generate. This will generate valid UPC-A barcodes to all products who do NOT yet have a barcode associated with them.

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