Hi, my name is Ally and I’m one of the Front End Developers in the Digital team at ScottishPower. I’ve been here for around a year mainly working on the .co.uk website. I like to be involved in the developer community, keeping up with the latest trends and constantly looking to read, listen and learn about all things web related. This enthusiasm, or geekiness, brought about the idea for this blog post…
I spotted an article on the BBC about the evolution of their website throughout the years as it’s 20 years since they launched it. I shared the article with the team and it got a discussion going about how it would be cool to see the evolution of the ScottishPower website throughout the years.
This prompted me to dive headfirst into the Wayback Machine. To my surprise, I found a pretty full history, with the first snapshot taken way back in January 1998. Wait a minute… that makes our site around 20 years old too! Unfortunately, the first screenshot that I could access was taken around 2000.
This was at the time that ScottishPower had completed the purchase of US energy company PacifiCorp as well as opened the Shoreham Power Station in West Sussex. As you can see, it was the old ScottishPower logo and colourway as well as lots of text and all the images were in Gif format. With households using 56k modems in those days the emphasis was on practicality and less on design.
Flash forward to 2005, ScottishPower had changed their logo, sold PacifiCorp and revamped the web site. The Gifs were out and a purple background in. Notice that users now have the ability to login and maintain accounts.
In 2007, Apple launched the iPhone and Spanish energy giants Iberdrola decided to purchase ScottishPower. The colour scheme on the website was reversed, which still meant plenty of purple but at least the background was white. Images and banners became more popular as well as a search box.
By this point it’s 2013, Whitelee Wind Farm was in full operation, Cockenzie Power Station had closed it’s doors after 45 years and Iberdrola had exerted their influence on the ScottishPower brand. Everything from the colour scheme to the logo was changed to match the parent company. Out went the purple and in came green and orange. On the website, the navigation was more structured at the top, with orange call to action buttons used to draw the user’s attention. This was also the first time social media icons featured in the footer of the website.
Gone is the 960px fixed width, 2015 was all about the full width site. A full width banner image, a lot less text and a lot more images. This was when the ‘Get a quote’ widget was introduced to the homepage, allowing non-customers a chance to get an energy quote as soon as they landed.
Now to the present day, it’s stripped back and minimalistic. The top area now allows three different banners to be displayed on an automated carousel. The quote widget has been redesigned but still present within one of the banners.
Looking ahead to 2018, plans are afoot to make this desktop site responsive, allowing customers to experience the full feature set across all devices and screen sizes.
I’m sure you might remember a few more of these homepages than I do, I only really recognise the most recent one. Both ScottishPower and the web have come a long, long way in the past 20 years.