Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Key Terms

Understand the meanings of electronic data interchange (EDI) key terms

Electronic data interchange (EDI) provides companies with a secure way to exchange information via the Internet. EDIs are used for all types of business documents from purchasing information to shipping. When browsing for electronic data interchange companies, there may be some terms that confuse or are unfamiliar to you. Learn the meanings of electronic data interchange key terms to assist you in locating a company that provides exactly what you need.


"Integrated" refers to software applications and programs that work together. Integrated software has data conversion tools that allow information in one software application to be transferred to another with ease.

Data sync

Data sync, or data synchronization technology, allows information to be sent automatically from one device to another. With data sync, when the device is connected, the sync copies all of the information needed and places it on the device.


An ASN, or Advance Shipping Notice, is an electronic notification that is sent when a product has been packaged and a shipping label has been printed. An ASN can be generic or customized for the company.

VAN service

VAN Service, or value added service, is a professional service that works with business partners who share information and proprietary data. A type of VAN service is offered by many EDI providers. VAN services are popular B2B, or business to business, devices.


XML stands for eXtensible Markup Language. XML is a text format that is used to carry data, not display it. XML is commonly used to add structure to text as it is carried. Some EDI companies require XML coding on files.


FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. FTP is a computer protocol for exchanging files via the Internet. An FTP site is a website designed for uploading and downloading files. Some EDI companies use FTP sites for file transfers.

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