Colour has a big impact on our emotions, mood and behaviour. In this article we will take a look at what colours you should be using on your website and why they are important.
Colour psychology is the science behind how colours affect humans. Some experts will even dismiss colour psychology because of how hard it is to test, but don’t let that put you off because a 5 minute search around the internet will reveal that certain industries tend to stick to certain colours because of the positive consequences it has on their users.
If you are in the process of designing a new website or redesigning an old website then the colours that you use will effect your website conversion rate, which will ultimately effect the success of your entire project.
Colour has every day uses, red for example is a sign of danger and without even reading the text we know that we should stop doing something. The colours on your website could be used in:
Colour on your website
Firstly you will need to understand your product/service and then your customers. Only then can you use colour to make sure that it is right for the purpose.
A website that sells kids toys will want to come across as being exciting and fun and wouldn’t want to use dark and muted colours. Toys r Us for example is a toy store that uses reds, yellows, orange and blue. Toys r Us uses vibrant colours to portray fun and excitement to their customers.
Max Factor on the other hand, stick to black and white, giving you less of the feeling of fun and more of being a premium brand.
Colours for women
If your website audience is primarily for women then you will want to avoid earthy tones. Women tend to dislike oranges, browns and greys where as they love blues, purples and greens.
Most people think that pink is most women’s favourite colour, but it isn’t. In a study carried out by kissmetric. They found that 35% of the women in their studies favourite colour was blue.
Colours for men
If your website is marketed towards men then you should more than likely stay away from purples, oranges and browns. You should stick to colours like blue, green and black.
Both men and women tend to love the colour blue and there is a good reason for that. Colour psychologists state that blue is a colour that people associate with trust, confidence and calmness. When we designed our own website (weeare.co.uk) we knew that blue would play a huge factor in our design because we knew that our audience would love it and see us as the trustworthy company that we are. But it is not just us that are using the colour blue to show that we are trustworthy.
Facebook, the world’s largest social network, blue.
PayPal a company that allows users from all around the world to send and receive money, blue.
Colours for call to actions
A call to action is something that you want your users to do, it could be to sign up, to get them to click on something or to send you an email. The colours used on a call to action can have a great affect on conversions.
Performable, a company now owned by Hubspot reported that changing their call to action button from green to red resulted in a 21% increase in conversions. But that’s not to say that green is a bad colour, because the opposite is true.
Green is a great colour for a call to action button as it stands out. Yellow can also be a good colour to use on a call to action as yellow is seen as an exciting colour. In the case of Performable, green wasn’t as effective as the colour red, so make sure to test colour on your website.
Do you have a cheap product?
If you have a website that sells cheap products or your service is one of the cheapest in the area then orange maybe a great colour to use on your website as people associate the colour orange with being cheap.
Expensive Product or Service?
Black gives off the feeling of elegance, classic and high value. For that reason there is no doubt why brands like Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Hugo Boss and Tom Ford all use black throughout their website.
Colour can have a massive affect on your business if it is used in the right way for your audience. In terms of your business, where you go from here is up to you. If your business has a brand style that you feel may not represent the service or product that you offer then you may have to campaign to change your brands style guide.
If your product is high end, expensive and seen as luxurious but your logo and website is covered in oranges, yellows and reds then you may want to point your companies decision makers to this site. Alternatively if your product is cheap, fun and exciting but your brand is dark and luxurious then do the same.
Colour psychology is hard to test, but even so you should still do it. Test small sections of your website at a time, change a buttons colour and track the conversion rates. Keep tweaking until you find out what works best for your business and your target audience and lastly don’t go overboard with colours as too many can create confusion.
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