GDSN is not a new term in the PIM world. It is making the PIM industry adapt to emerging challenges using its efficient data-sharing capability. Every business keeps a database containing details about the products they manufacture, sell, or purchase. Everyone in the sales funnel, including the partners, has access to the dataset created by the owner. This process is laborious and time intensive, so as a solution, GS1 created the Global Data Synchronization Network. GS1 is an international, non-profit organization that upholds standards for barcodes, RFID tags, and supply chain communications like Electronic Data Interchange.

What is GDSN?

GDSN (Global Data Synchronization Network) is an online network that enables business partners to share and access product information in real time. Trading partners can communicate information via the GDSN’s network of connected data pools while maintaining the integrity of the data. Companies use GDSN to access timely and accurate product information, which is essential for businesses of all sizes to help their consumers. Product data sharing between trading partners has been transformed by the GDSN and is still being modernized.

GDSN works on a subscription basis. It is made up of extensible “data pools” around the globe. Trading partners or retailers need to subscribe to the data pool they want from numerous data pools out there. When a supplier updates the data in the data pool, the change will also be reflected in the trading partner’s data pool. This approach will provide enriched data access to every person in the product life cycle. Therefore, businesses can be sure that when one of their suppliers or merchants updates product information, it is reflected in their own database.

How does it work?

In GDSN, the seller or manufacturer registers or updates data in the data pool created by them. The brand owner or seller gives each product a Global Trade Item Number (GTIN), a unique 14-digit identification number. The brand owner then adds attributes to the GTIN that provide detailed information about the product.  The owner uploads the Global Trade Item Number in the data pool, and the data gets published in the GS1 global data registry. The registry maintains a record of traders and subscribers, verifies data uniqueness, and monitors adherence to universal GS1 standards. The purpose of the GTIN and Global Registry is to simplify the process of finding a specific item by quickly locating it with a pre-allocated number. 

There is one more identification number called Global Location Number (GLN) for both suppliers and retailers. Locations are given a Global Location Number (GLN), which enables them to be uniquely identified around the world. GLN facilitates product tracking, process improvement, and increased transaction visibility by giving parties and locations unique identifiers. With the Global Trade Item Number (GTIN), the Global Location Number (GLN), and other GS1 Standards, you can see exactly where and how your items travel across the global supply chain.

Trading partners can join the GDSN by subscribing to a recognized data pool, and the owner can provide access to the data pool. When they subscribe to the data pool, every time the seller makes any update in the data pool, it will also be reflected in the supplier’s and retailers’ end. This makes the complete product information available to everyone in the supply chain, making it easy for everyone to handle product information efficiently. The data in a system like GDSN needs to be accurate and qualitative so as to help other buyers. To ensure that the system complies with a rigid set of standards, all data input is checked and validated in the global data registry. The standardized data sets ensure that everything in the supply chain operates well. This makes it possible for data senders and receivers to synchronize and share pertinent data from any global location. GDSN network provides a centralized product data view for everyone in the supply chain for delivering a single point of truth. 

GDSN data network includes processes such as data synchronization, data quality check, and product classification. When combined, they create a rich environment for a secure and ongoing synchronization of reliable data.

Why is the Global Data Synchronization Network critical?

GDSN is helping businesses across the globe to store and share product information for reliable decision-making. For instance, in the home appliances industry, transporting products from one site to another is quintessential. While loading the trucks with your products, it’s essential to understand the product dimensions to ensure optimized transportation costs. The vendors’ route design is fatally flawed by inaccurate measurements or missing data, frequently resulting in extra tours or underused transportation hubs. 

According to a report by worldsync, 81 percent of consumers are willing to switch to a brand that provides more detailed information on product pages, indicating that there is a record-high demand from consumers for product transparency. Global Data Synchronization Network makes it easy and comfortable for sellers and retailers to enrich their product database and access it in real-time for enhanced efficiency. High-quality product material is automatically exchanged, updated, and published through the GDSN network. 

For instance, in the food and beverage industry, it is important for retailers and middlemen to understand everything about the products they are selling. They need to know every ingredient of the product to ensure that they are selling the right product to the right audience. For example, if a manufacturer is producing a food or beverage that contains nuts, all the retailers should be aware of the ingredients. As some people are allergic to nuts, it’s important for retailers to sell their products under the right category. GDSN helps the retailers to get all the information about the product which helps them in listing the product under the right category. 

Participants in the GDSN data network have observed a clear and favorable association between this data network and critical business metrics, including improved customer service, increased revenues, improved order accuracy, and enhanced supply chain management. Integrating GDSN and getting synced data increases value by lowering costs and increasing overall revenue. 

GDSN Data Pool

A GDSN Data Pool is a centralized repository where trading partners can securely store and share standardized product information. It acts as a hub for data synchronization, ensuring that accurate and consistent product data is available to all stakeholders.

  • Data Standardization: GDSN Data Pools use standardized data formats (e.g., GS1 standards) to ensure consistency in product information
  • Data Validation: Pools validate data to ensure compliance with established standards, reducing errors and discrepancies
  • Data Synchronization: Trading partners can update and synchronize product information in real-time, maintaining consistency across the supply chain

GDSN Connectivity

The Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN) Connectivity is a critical component that facilitates the seamless exchange of standardized product information across the supply chain.

It ensures efficient communication between trading partners, enabling them to synchronize and update product data in real time.

Final thoughts

If you are looking deep into product information, you must have heard about the PIM system. Check out PIMworks to understand how we deliver the finest PIM solutions to help you build a data network that works every time.


Gopika is a passionate writer, who expresses her views and opinions via writing. She is a budding comic writer who believes in giving her readers comfort by taking them out to a fictional world. Apart from writing, cooking and music take her to the Zen mode.

Write A Comment