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GDSN. What is it and why is it important?

September 08, 2022
2 min read

What is GDSN?

GDSN (Global Data Synchronization Network) is an internet-based network that enables trading partners to exchange product-identification data in a standardized way in real time. Launched in 2004, it is an initiative of GS1, a global not-for-profit association that maintains standards for Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), barcodes and RFID (radio frequency identification) tags.

What problem is GDSN trying to solve?

SCALABILITY. GDSN exists to help all actors in the commerce space scale their businesses.

For brands, the thousands of retailers and distributors across the world request unique sets of product data in different formats and via different delivery methods (API, email, portals, etc.).

For retailers, the thousands of brands they sell don’t necessarily deliver product data in desired formats, accurately or fully complete.

How does GDSN solve the scalability issue?

By creating an interconnected network of data pools, a global registry (GS1), and a standardized set of business rules.  These three things should allow trading partners from all around the world to share product content efficiently and securely.  It ensures that product content is accurate and validated against a set of strict business rules. This introduces efficiency to the supply chain through confidence that every player works from the same data set, which should be the most complete and up to date.

Concretely, GDSN follows a publisher/subscriber messaging model.  Product information is sent to/from GS1 Global Registry via certified data pools, which strictly align with defined standards. Sellers (brand manufacturers) publish their product data to the Global Registry. Buyers (retailers) subscribe to the seller’s catalog in the Global registry and receive updates on them.

What are the benefits?

Very simply, GDSN results in the following crucial benefits:

  1. One catalog to maintain and update
  2. Less manual processes and reduced errors
  3. Bringing new products to the market quickly and easily

Any brand who finds their products being sold via multiple retailers can benefit from finding a GDSN solution.  Brandquad is a GDSN compliant solution meaning that we are readily available to help meet your complex needs for worldwide product data publication.  Our Product Information Management (PIM) solution will help you manage your product data and ensure compliancy, helping you scale your commerce activities online.