How to Obtain Barcodes to Track Music Sales of CDs

The technical term for a barcode is Universal Product Code, or UPC. These codes allow music recordings to report to Nielsen Soundscan. Merchants will often use these barcodes to track inventory and quickly evaluate high-performing and low-performing records. Once the barcode is purchased, it becomes possible for Nielsen Soundscan to track results.

Step 1 Purchase a barcode from an independent retailer such as CDBaby. This is the easiest way to secure a barcode and these retailers will track the information from Soundscan for you.

Step 2 Download the form located in the resources section to complete the information required to track your music recording. The form requires you to enter the song title, artist title, media type and UPC bar code.

Step 3 Tracking sales requires a membership with Nielsen Soundscan. To sign up, visit their website and click the Contact Us link. They will create an account for you and inform you of any charges associated with your request.

Barcodes can be expensive. By going with a distributor such as CDBaby you can own your barcode and sell your album anywhere without having to pay the fees associated with registering your barcode.


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