Invalid GTIN Error in Feed Review

Ewa Kulik Updated by Ewa Kulik

There may be many different reasons for this error occurring in your Google Merchant Center. The first step to fixing the issue is identifying what exactly happened with your GTIN.

But first, what GTIN is 👉click! 

Usually, the Google Merchant Center tells you why your GTIN is invalid. The main problem may occur because you have incorrect data within your source feed, a wrong setup in your mapping, or the GTIN you are provided needs to be corrected. 

What are the most common causes of problems, and how to fix them?

GTIN is not unique.

It means that more than one different products have the same GTIN. 

GTIN is unique for every product, and provided by the manufacturer. Meaning if you sell the same product as another retailer, the GTIN of this product will be the same for both retailers. Let’s take a look at the example:

- You sell the original Adidas shoes Gazelle, green color. 
- The manufacturer’s GTIN is 4065427216041. 
- Another retailer sells the very same product as you- Adidas Shoes, Gazelle, green color. 
- Both the shoes you sell and the shoes the other retailer sells will have the same GTIN, which is 4065427216041.

If you can not find the GTIN of the product, please refer to the Missing GTIN.

To fix this issue, you need to find the duplicated GTIN first. To do so:

  1. Go to the corresponding channel.
  2. Head to Feed Review.
  3. In the Feed Review Report, scroll down to the Details.
  4. Click on Advanced to open an advanced search.
  5. In the ONLY IF conditions, select the following filters:
    1. From the first drop-down menu, select Field.
    2. From the second drop-down menu, select includes.
    3. In the last input text field, type gtin.
    4. Click on the + AND button on the right hand side.
    5. In the row below, select Issue type from the first drop-down menu.
    6. From the following drop-down menu, select the option includes.
    7. In the last drop-down, select: Identifier not unique.
    8. Click on the blue Search button.
    9. In the table below will appear all the products with this specific issue. 
    10. Now, head to the mapping or your source feed to correct the duplicated GTINs, as you can see what products have the same GTIN.
  6. Provide your product data with the correct GTIN numbers.
  7. Refresh your input feed.

The GTIN number needs to be corrected. 

The manufacturer provides the GTIN number, and Google knows perfectly what number belongs to each product. That’s why it is fundamental to adjust correct identifiers. You can not make up, guess, or include values from other similar products.

How to fix the issue: 

First of all, typos happen, so try to check whether you didn’t miss any digits or if the format is correct.

  1. As a first step, you can check if the required length of GTIN is correct. For this case, you can use a suitable RegExp to avoid a tedious manual search. How to check if the GTIN length is correct with RegExp.
    1. Go to the mapping of your data feed. 
    2. If you haven’t done it yet,  go to the Optional Fields and add the GTIN.
    3. Set up a rule for gtin.
    4.  Select rename.
    5. In the following field, choose gtin.
    6. Choose the option Only IF.
    7. Select the internal field gtin.
    8. Choose the rules: matches regex.
    9. Copy the following regexp: ^\d{12,14}$|^\d{8}$ and paste it into the field Enter Text.
    Copy this RegExp: ^\d{12,14}$|^\d{8}$
    1. Click on Confirm.
    2. Once you set up the rule and confirm, click on Save and Proceed.

(i) A regular expression (RegExp for short) is a text string describing a search pattern. You can think of regular expressions as wildcards on steroids. You are probably familiar with wildcard notations such as *.txt to find all text files in a file manager.

More about the RegExp  👉 Click!

Once you’ve checked the proper length for the GTINs and corrected the incorrect ones, but the problems with GTINS keep coming along: 

  1. Check all the GTINs in your data feed to detect the incorrect one.
  2. You can use Check Digit Calculator by GS1 to check if the GTIN is correct.
  3. Correct the wrong GTINs, or provide the right ones.
  4. Re-upload your data feed.

When you have looked through everything, and all the GTINs are correct, but the problem still occurs, check if your GTIN provided by the manufacturer is generally accurate. 

If it is not, it’s recommendable to contact your product's manufacturer or just not send the GTIN info. It might result in lower efficiency for the products’ ads, but it will avoid problems.

Providing you with helpful information is very important to us đź’™. Let us know if you need more assistance.

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Missing GTIN