Unified Grocers has launched a program that will allow its customers to earn Visa Rewards card points while they shop online at websites of over 1,000 merchants.

The exclusive program for retail members is known as eShop-Rewards. The program, which was launched on Monday, November 5, was established by Unified Grocers together with a promotions and marketing company.

To participate in the program, consumers have to register through the program’s site www.eshop-rewards.com. The consumer will then be expected to pick a member supermarket of the cooperative as the preferred shopping place. Earning reward points will entail visiting the listed online sites to purchase products, which have point totals laid by manufacturers. The minimum points to be accumulated are 27 points, which when earned one has to click an “earnings” button found on the site. A pre-paid $25 card that is re-loadable will then be mailed to the customer. The card will be sent by the Unified Grocers retailer member, most of whom are national retailers.

The member-owned cooperative has said that its member retailers can use consumers’ information to develop and build relationships. The consumers on the other hand are able to earn points while shopping online at retail stores they are already buying from. The program is touted to be a win-win for retailers and shoppers as the retailers can grow their businesses and get more consumers that are loyal.

Unified Grocers, whose full name is Unified Western Grocers Inc. is a grocery cooperative that is retailer-owned. The cooperative serves supermarket, convenience and specialty store operators that are located mostly in the western part of the United States as well as the South Pacific.