Explaining EDI: Guide To Field Limitations

2 min read

Below is your guide to EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) field limitations, including character quantity and special character usage.

Field Limitations: Character limit

  • SKU – 48 character limit
  • SKU description field – 45 character limit
  • SKU length – 8 character limit
  • SKU width – 8 character limit
  • SKU height – 8 character limit
  • SKU weight – 8 character limit
  • Lot code – 12 character limit

Field Limitations: Restricted Characters for SKU or Name/Product Description Fields

  • Do not use the following:  * : ; & , . / ? ! ^ % ~ + “
  • Do not use apostrophes at the end of a word.
    • If it is in the middle of the word, then it is okay.
  • Decimals are usually okay.
  • Underscore and hyphens are fine.
  • () {} [] are only allowed in text fields (not in dates or math).

Related Reading: Explaining EDI – 200 Transaction Codes

Field Limitations: Special Characters

It is best practice to avoid commas, pipes, asterisks, and back or forward slashes. These are often used in EDI as segment or line terminators and can cause issues with mapping. As we move away from the use of CSV files towards other EDI translation options, the restrictions on data are diminishing but, for now, avoid using the following: * % ? . * \ | /:

Additionally, avoid using other special characters, such as letters with accents. For example, avoid “ç” or “Ä” or “é”, etc. Other special characters, such as an em dash, should be avoided as well.

New to EDI? Check out our post: What is EDI (Electronic Data Interchange)?

Get readable drill down analyses. Let us Help you.

Related Resources

Written by The SupplyPike Team

About The SupplyPike Team

SupplyPike builds software to help retail suppliers fight deductions, meet compliance standards, and dig down to root cause issues in their supply chain.

Read More
The SupplyPike Team



SupplyPike helps you fight deductions, increase in-stocks, and meet OTIF goals in the built-for-you platform, powered by machine learning.

View SupplyPike's Website