#21 Bar Codes

NEIBA Question of the Week #20

The NEIBA Board members are starting a Question of the Week on the NEIBA Group at Yahoo! Groups (our Listserv). The goal is to share everyone’s common knowledge about bookselling or anything related to independent bookstores.  It is our hope that after the Board has run through with their questions other members will continue the asking.

This week’s question is:

We are looking to get a bar scanner to make bar codes for things like Out of Print and other stuff.

Does anyone have a recommendation?


Annie, Bank Square Books

Pat Fowler, Village Square Booksellers

To make bar codes, you would need something like a Brother Label Printer
that would attach to a computer by USB Brother PT-P750W P-Touch: Print customized labels using fonts and graphicsfrom your PC or Mac. High Print Resolution supports crisp barcode and logo printing

Josh Christie, Shermans

Pat’s right – you can even make bar codes from any combination of letter and numbers on this site – http://www.barcodesinc.com/generator/index.php. We’ve used it to make bar codes for items we have in Wordstock as x-numbers. You just want to make sure you have a printer that can print nice, crisp lines on stickers for the items.

Janet Bibeau, Storybook Cove

I make bar codes for doll clothing with my POS system — Anthology. It’s a printing choice. I print it on a label and stick it on the item. Perhaps your system has that capability?

Wendy, Nantucket

We have a great little Zebra printer that came recommended through Basil. It is fast and easy, and the stickers are removable. Love it more than I loved hand-writing X-codes for years 😉

Ellen Burns, Book on the Common

We print bar codes from our POS system (Anthology). No need for extra printers or software, although the size of the label is pretty large – not great for small-ish sidelines (jewelry, etc.).

Emily Crowe, The Odyssey Bookshop

We use Wordstock and have a Zebra printer that is a dedicated label printer that we use for all non-sku sidelines. It’s fast and efficient and creates a bar code whether a product has an ISBN, a SKU, or any X number because it converts X numbers to bar codes. They also peel off easily. The only downside is using them on any surface that isn’t flat, in which case they peel off entirely TOO easily and will end up sticking together in a jumble. For example, the rolled poster Litographs that came in a tube? Disaster trying to use the labels on the cardboard tube. But a dream to use them on the flat, matted posters, or on the Out of Print Clothing labels, etc.

Alice, Byrds

Like Ellen, we print from our POS system (Anthology) and order Avery removeable address labels. On our small items, such as jewelry, we wrap the label around stringed tags. Yes, the label is large, but it is simple and has worked well for us.