Amazon Standard Identification Number

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The Amazon Standard Identification Number (ASIN) is a 10-character alphanumeric unique identifier assigned by Amazon.com and its partners for product identification within the Amazon.com organization.[1] Amazon.ca,[1] Amazon.co.uk,[2] Amazon.de,[3] Amazon.fr,[4] Amazon.it,[5] Amazon.co.jp,[6] Amazon.cn,[7] and Amazon.es[8] also use ASINs.

Although ASINs used to be unique worldwide, global expansion has changed so that ASINs are only guaranteed unique within a marketplace. The same product may be referred to by several ASINs though, and different national sites may use a different ASIN for the same product. In general, ASINs are likely to be different between the country sites unless they are for a class of product where the ASIN is based on an externally defined and internationally consistent identifier, such as ISBN for books. (Where the ASIN is the same across sites, it is likely to be because the 3rd party creator of the product information was careful to quote an existing ASIN when creating the product in second and subsequent countries, or the subsequent product creation offered exact duplicate information and long enough after the initial creation to allow indexes to have been updated. Also, ISBNs can vary between countries for the same book if a separate print run or edition was published for the country.)

Each product sold on Amazon.com is given a unique ASIN. For books with 10-digit International Standard Book Number (ISBN), the ASIN and the ISBN are the same. Books without a 10-digit ISBN (including those with only a 13-digit ISBN)[citation needed] and other products are also assigned 10-character ASINs. The Kindle edition of a book will not use its ISBN as the ASIN.

ASINs are also used for other items used by Amazon.com (and subsidiaries), such as businesses in the yellow pages (on A9.com) and OpenSearch feeds.

ASIN in Amazon URLs[edit]

On Amazon's USA-targeted web site, a product's web address (URL) may contain its ASIN in any of the following formats:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/ASIN-VALUE-HERE
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/ASIN-VALUE-HERE
http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/ASIN-VALUE-HERE
http://www.amazon.com/dp/ASIN-VALUE-HERE
http://www.amazon.com/<ProductName>/dp/ASIN-VALUE-HERE

where ASIN-VALUE-HERE is replaced by the actual ASIN.

For example, using the "dp" ("detail page") URL format, the 4th paperback edition of Strunk and White's The Elements of Style, whose ISBN is 0-205-30902-X, would be found at:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/020530902X

If a book has the "Look Inside" preview feature, the short URL is:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/ASIN-VALUE-HERE#reader_ASIN-VALUE-HERE

E.g., The Elements of Style 4th paperback edition would be found at:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/020530902X#reader_020530902X

Similar URLs can be constructed for Amazon web sites in other countries. However, not all sites carry all titles; for example, the ASIN B000J8VLEC only appears on Amazon.jp.

Shortening the URL[edit]

In cases where a shorter URL is desired than the one provided by default by the Amazon web site—for example, for use in a text message—the prefix "www." may be removed, and, if present, any text after the ASIN itself may be dropped from the URL, as well as any text between the domain name (e.g., amazon.com) and the first part of the resource path in the cases listed above (e.g., /gp or /dp).

For example, if one uses Amazon's search feature to find the Strunk and White book mentioned above, the resulting URL might look like:

http://amazon.com/Elements-Style-Fourth-William-Strunk/dp/020530902X/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1307695052&sr=8-7

This can be shortened to:

http://amazon.com/dp/020530902X

In addition, the domain name itself may be shortened to amzn.com (USA site only), in which case everything except the domain and ASIN may be dropped. This results in the shortest possible form:

http://amzn.com/020530902X

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Amazon.ca Help: Product Identifiers". Amazon.ca. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  2. ^ "Amazon.co.uk Help: What is an ASIN?". Amazon.co.uk. Archived from the original on 3 June 2011. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  3. ^ "Amazon.de Hilfe: Was ist eine ASIN (ISBN)?" (in German). Amazon.de. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  4. ^ "Amazon.fr Aide: ASIN et ISBN : qu'est-ce que c'est ?" (in French). Amazon.fr. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  5. ^ "Amazon.it Aiuto: Condizioni Generali di Uso e Vendita." (in Italian). Amazon.it. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  6. ^ "ISBN/ASINについて" (in Japanese). Amazon.co.jp. Archived from the original on 14 May 2011. Retrieved 25 May 2011. 
  7. ^ "亚马逊-网上购物商城:要网购, 就来Z.cn!". Retrieved 10 April 2014. 
  8. ^ "Amazon.es Ayuda: Localización de los códigos ASIN e ISBN." (in Spanish). Amazon.es. Retrieved 29 Oct 2011.