How Does the GDSN Work? 

February 8, 2022

How Does the GDSN Work? 

Product information drives sales, trust, and consumer confidence in your brand. Read on to learn everything you need to know about the GS1 Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN®). 

What is the GDSN? 

The GS1 Global Data Synchronization Network enables any company in any market to share product content with trading partners worldwide. The origins of the GDSN date back to the 1970s as retailers sought a way to speed up the check-out process in stores. Out of this need, Universal Product Code (UPC) codes were developed and implemented in shops across the U.S. The UPC code was the first single standard for product identification. The information within these codes provided universal, accurate product content, making inventory and sales much easier for merchants. 

As time passed, the need for accurate, consistent product information increased, and the GDSN was launched. The GDSN is an internet-based, global initiative that enables trading partners to exchange product data efficiently and without error. 

Today, the GDSN continues to provide seamless product data sharing, giving consumers access to the information they want and need when shopping for goods. Shoppers not only desire accurate product information, but they demand it. 

1WorldSync’s Consumer Benchmark Report found that the vast majority of consumers –– 84 percent –– deem the product content experience a vital factor in their purchase decisions. In fact, among the respondents, product content is more important than brand recognition. 

The GDSN empowers sellers, vendors, retailers, and everyone in between to provide the accurate, informative product content consumers want, driving sales and increasing buyer confidence in the products they purchase. 

Why Does GDSN Matter? 

Consumer demand for product transparency is at an all-time high: 81 percent of shoppers are willing to switch to a brand that offers more in-depth information on product pages. To earn consumer trust –– and dollars –– brands must practice transparent, consistent product data disbursement. The GDSN makes this possible. 

GDSN is the universal method for product data sharing. Through the GDSN, high-quality product content is uploaded, maintained, and automatically shared. This network ensures trading partners have immediate access to the most current and complete product information. 

Through 1WorldSync, you provide your data to shoppers across channels, empowering them to make confident, informed purchase decisions. GDSN enables companies, consumers, and retailers to benefit from seamless content delivery. The network provides efficient digital optimization, instantly putting your product data in consumers’ hands. 

Today’s market is omnichannel. Shoppers have the resources and ability to conduct in-depth research on goods before purchasing. They’re checking out different retailers and buying options to make smart, informed choices. 1WorldSync’s research shows that 98 percent of consumers research products online before going to the store at least some of the time, and 80 percent research in-store via their smartphone at the same frequency. Consumers constantly seek the best product at the best price from the brands they trust the most.

For the seller, you can’t list your product at just one location. In an omnichannel market, you must be an omnichannel seller. Sell where the consumer is shopping. That looks like listing through multiple retailers and sites in today’s market. 

The GDSN enables you to list your product data accurately and efficiently wherever your brand exists and within any and all channels. Instead of spending hours updating product information for each individual item, the GDSN makes those changes for you from a single source. The universal system reduces input error and saves time and resources which you can pour back into your company. 

1WorldSync and the GDSN

The GDSN revolutionized and continues to revolutionize product data sharing among trading partners. Product data standards have come a long way since the first UPC code of the 1970s. The GDSN continues to change to meet the needs of today’s consumers shopping on digital channels, and 1WorldSync is proud to be the premier global GDSN data pool.  

1WorldSync has the highest number of items in the GDSN. Our product content platform supports over 14,000 brands and retailers in over 60 countries, encompassing the majority of GDSN data activity. By understanding the GDSN and its standards, we can provide you with the services and support you need to instantly publish and share your product content. 

Since its inception, the GDSN has changed to meet the needs of buyers and sellers. Innovations have expanded the network to make data sharing more efficient and consistent for more products. At 1WorldSync, our mission is to drive efficiency through the GDSN standards. Because we focus on keeping network standards, we reduce extra work on your end while increasing the consumer’s trust thanks to accurate and consistent product data. 

Better yet, we work closely with the world’s largest content recipients to ensure your content attributes align with their unique requirements. Daily, this real-time validation gives thousands of brands the peace of mind their content is good to go, or on the other hand, gives them the intel they need to fix key product content gaps.  

At 1WorldSync, we understand the necessity of omnichannel sales. The GDSN caters to online and offline retailers and brands, creating consistency at every channel. The GDSN standards allow companies to speak the same language and drive commerce across channels, and 1WorldSync makes the process easy for brands and sellers like you. 

How GDSN Shapes E-Commerce

Consumers have entered a new frontier of e-commerce over the last 18 months. A recent report by 1WorldSync shows that since the onset of the pandemic, 87 percent of consumers purchased items online that they previously bought in store. And for many consumers, the shift to online shopping is permanent. 

As you restructure your marketing efforts to target e-commerce shoppers, consider how 1WorldSync can optimize your GDSN experience. You know the importance of accurate, complete product information. At the same time, the quality of that product content cannot be overstated. 

1WorldSync’s 2021 Consumer Product Benchmark report found that high-quality media, such as 360-degree images, persuaded consumers to buy something they didn’t originally think they needed. Of those surveyed, 81 percent believe quality product content is more important than brand recognition in making purchase decisions.  

Product content quality matters. Better quality content leads to better engagement and more revenue. In an omnichannel market, you must provide accurate, consistent, and exceptional product data to give consumers a complete picture of your product. 1WorldSync has the solutions and GDSN expertise to provide you with product content that complies with GDSN standards and gives you a competitive advantage regardless of your market. 

The Importance of Data Pool Providers 

Data pools allow trading partners to send and receive product information through the GDSN. Your data pool enables you to publish product content and seamlessly and instantly share it with all your trading partners. Because you input the data directly through your data pool, all information is the same, drastically reducing data entry and edit errors. 

Your data pools are the gateway to your product information. It makes sense that choosing your data pool provider is crucial to the success of your sales and, ultimately, your brand. 1WorldSync is the world’s largest GDSN data pool provider. By working with 1WorldSync, you enjoy

  • The World’s Largest Data Pool – Regardless of the size or scope of your market, you can ensure your trading partners have access to the most current and complete product information. 
  • Better, Faster Data Sharing – A single source of product content streamlines data sharing.
  • Global Flexibility and Reach – GDSN data pool access empowers you to strengthen and grow your global network and drive more business. 
  • Brand Identity Preservation – Accurate and consistent product content protects your reputation among trading partners and, just as importantly, the end user.

1WorldSync’s GDSN platform offers unmatched flexibility to meet our global vendors’ needs. Our data pool provides formatting options that meet your needs seamlessly and automatically. And as GDSN regulations and releases emerge, we ensure your content stays compliant and up to date, freeing you up to invest your time and energy where it’s most needed.


The GDSN opens the door to limitless potential growth and revenue for your company. Choosing an experienced, proven data pool provider is essential to getting the most out of the GDSN. 1WorldSync’s expertise and support ensure your company takes full advantage of the network to grow your bottom line.