How to create barcodes for gift cards and other documents
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There are often times when you might want to place a barcode on various documents like inside an excel spreadsheet, on gift cards, or on a number of other things - they can be incredibly handy!
To give you some background on how barcodes work (and I'm oversimplifying here) - they are basically a font that a human can't read but a barcode scanner scan - and most barcode scanners just read the barcode and spit it into the computer much like if you were typing on your keyboard.
So when you change fonts in a Word document from Arial to Squiggles to make it look cool - changing it from Arial to a barocde is pretty much the same thing. Numbers AND letters can be embedded into a barcode.
Here's how you can embed these into a document of any kind;
1) Download the font from this website for free (thanks Matthew!) and install as per the directions on the site;
Once you download it you'll need to go to the control panel on your computer and drop the font file into the font folder in there. If you need more help on this try using google to find information on how to install a font.
2) Once installed open your favorite application that you use fonts in (Word, Excel, Photoshop) and type some text into it and surround it with stars and do NOT use spaces - type it twice on two lines. For example;
Highlight the top line of text and then choose the barcoded front from your font list - it should appear in the font list like this (from Word 2007 on my machine);
Once you do that the top line will appear as a barcode - increase its font size to something larger - I use typically 24 point, that makes it much more scan-able. It should now appear like this;
3) Print it and make sure to test it with a barcode scanner. You'll see that when you scan it the barcode scanner outputs "test1234". The star characters do not print - they are there to let the barcode scanner know where the start and end of the barcode is.
4) Insert your desired text and repeat!
- Barcodes can only handle certain characters - to be safe stick with letters and numbers with no spaces. The free font included in this doc is 3 of 9, other barcode fonts have other limitation or capabilities.
SAMPLES USES WITH MICROSOFT RMS / POS 2009
- Embed these on sale signs you make with Publisher or word
- If you want to print your own gift certificates these work great.
- Another super interesting use we've come up with is if you export a report from the system to Excel / CSV, use an excel formula to copy the item lookup code column into another column and surround it by star characters - then highlight your new column and set the font to the be a bar code and print. You now have a report with items that is scanable. You can really make good use of this with RMS's quick scan function.
We hope this helps, thanks for reading!