Shoppers have named Best-one as the UK’s third best convenience operator ahead of all other symbol groups including Londis, Budgens, Costcutter and Premier, a report by consumer group Which? reveals.

Customers rated Best-one stores highly for their ease of finding products, fast queuing times and availability (all four out of five stars).

M&S Simply Food and Little Waitrose topped the list in first and second place respectively.

Tesco Express and The Co-operative Group took the fourth and fifth spots on the convenience store sector customer satisfaction list.

The study polled over 6,800 shoppers across the UK - although the sample size for Best-one was 59, compared to 486 for M&S Simply Food.

James Hall, symbol development director at Bestway Wholesale welcomed the results: “This proves categorically that we are moving in the right direction.

“Our members already know that we lead the field in terms of service, pricing and promotions and to be voted the top symbol operator by shoppers is a fantastic achievement. Despite all the turmoil and consolidation over the past year, we have just got on with what we do best for our members and shoppers.”

The coming year would see “major advances in fresh and chilled and food-to-go” which should strengthen its position in the independent convenience sector even further, Hall added.

Since January, Best-one has signed up over 100 retailers to its symbol operation with a further 250 registering their intent to do so.

Bestway Wholesale has also doubled the size of its Chilled Distribution Centre in Coventry to meet the growing needs of new and current members and has also invested significantly in its best-one own-label range.