Building our membership 

This year we welcomed 13,090 new members. Many of these new sign-ups were driven by online advertising campaigns, complemented by in-store activity.  

Providing an enticing benefit to becoming an East of England Co-op member, as well as rewarding our existing members, this year we partnered with 16 brands, companies and experiences, providing exclusive offers through our ‘Member Perks’ scheme. Fourteen of the offers came from regional companies and brands, setting us apart from other member offer platforms. Many of these partnerships will continue with us into the year ahead.  

The discounts available, and partners we work with, are constantly refreshing. You can read more here

Swipe to Win

Increasing the appeal of being an East of England Co-op card member, as well as shopping with us and using the card, is an important part of growing our co-op.  

‘Swipe to Win’ is one way in which we have increased the appeal of not just being a member, but also of using a membership card at every transaction. The competition gives members the chance of winning an exciting prize, with each ‘swipe’ of their membership card in-store counting towards one competition entry. Last year, competition prizes included a holiday and a lifetime National Trust subscription.

Virtual remembrance event 

Our Funeral Services held its annual event, ‘Your Co-op Live: Christmas Remembrance’, virtually last year. Initially, the service was moved to an online format during the Covid-19 pandemic and, following positive feedback from attendees, it remained virtual for Christmas 2022.

Those who watched the event in previous years commented that they were more comfortable showing their emotion in the privacy of their own home. It also made for an event which was more accessible to our clients across the region.

This year’s event focused on the theme of remembrance and the different ways in which we keep loved ones with us and featured a speaker from Suffolk Mind and two of our Funeral Services colleagues. The livestream was interactive, with attendees able to leave a comment, as well as having the ability to dedicate a candle to a loved one who has passed away.

Our clients who have lost a loved one in the last two years were invited to watch, however the event was free for all to attend, as well as being available to watch again via our website. 

'Your Co-op Live'

Initially launched as a way of engaging and supporting our members and customers during the Covid-19 pandemic, we continued with our ‘Your Co-op Live’ virtual events. Our Community Engagement team hosted four sessions this year, which were livestreamed online, as well as being available to watch on demand. Each session focuses on a different subject, giving advice, support, and guidance to people on a variety of topics, which this year included:  

  • Mental health and wellbeing in collaboration with Suffolk Mind 
  • Beer tasting featuring local producer Adnams
  • Information on various support services available in our region, including Citizens Advice and foodbanks
  • Information on preparing your estate for your family and support for individuals and families experiencing end of life, with Ellisons Solicitors and St Helena Hospice in Colchester.  

For those watching live, the broadcast is an interactive experience. Our special guests and expert speakers answer questions from the audience at the end of each session.  

You can watch all our ‘Your Co-op Live’ events here.

'How did we do?'

‘How did we do’ is our programme for collecting feedback from customers in our Food stores. Since launching the initiative, we’ve seen increasing uptake from both members and non-members, with up to 2,000 responses received each month.  

From the service they received, to the products they purchased, the feedback allows us to improve the experience we give our customers.  

As well as emailing members that have recently shopped with us, we also introduced QR codes across our stores allowing customers to quickly and easily scan to complete the survey too.  

The information we collect is collated each day and shared with our colleagues in-store via an app. This means our store colleagues can immediately act on the feedback and drive the change their customers want to see.  

The feedback is also viewable across the business, making for rapid sharing of best practice across our Food stores and Central Support teams, helping us to convert our members and customers into Ambassadors.  

Ambassadors are members and customers who are happy with all aspects of their experience – they feel valued by our colleagues and consider our stores competitive. Since launching 18 months ago, we’ve seen the proportion of respondents that fall into the Ambassador category grow, demonstrating that we’re listening, learning and having a positive impact on our members’ and customers’ experience shopping with us. 

This report reflects our five 'Our Co-op' strategies.
Click on a strategy to learn more:

Building our fanbase

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Improving the daily lives of our colleagues

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Taking action to help save our planet

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Championing local

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Growing and evolving our business

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