Color Psychology in Web Design

June 16, 2023
David Sunnyside

Color Psychology in Web Design How to Use Colors to Influence Users

Colors evoke emotions and influence our decisions. Understanding how colors work can help you design websites that meet your design goals and create a positive user experience.

For example, a yoga studio might use blue to convey a sense of tranquility or safety, while a bank would use red to communicate trust and dependability. Using colors in ways that are consistent with your brand personality is crucial to your website’s success.

Colors that Attract Attention

If you’re a designer or digital marketing manager, it should come as no surprise that color plays a major role in web design. After all, a website’s color can improve conversions, trigger customer action, and grab attention. It can also create a general feeling about your brand that influences your reputation over time.

According to research, colors can build or destroy a person’s trust, increase or decrease brand loyalty, and form 90% of their perception of a company within 90 seconds. Knowing this, it’s important to consider the psychological meanings of each color in your web design process.

For example, orange has a tendency to invoke feelings of excitement, creativity, and energy when used in the right way. However, overdoing it can make a website look chaotic and disorganized.

Colors that Convey Trust

The colors you use on your website should match the emotion you want to evoke. For example, red is passionate and attention-grabbing. It can be used to catch the eye of a potential customer in a hero image or on a call to action button.

Choosing the right colors can help you build trust and convince users to make a purchase or sign up for your email list. In fact, color can influence 85% of customer buying decisions.

While tradition has it that blue is a boy’s color and pink is a girl’s color, the truth is that men and women respond differently to certain colors. For example, according to Kissmetrics, women prefer blue, purple, and green while orange, brown, and gray are least appealing. This is why it’s important to understand your audience demographic and choose colors that resonate with them. This will ensure your web design appeals to the largest audience possible.

Colors that Convey Energy

It's no secret that different colors evoke different emotions in consumers. This is why many designers turn to color psychology when creating a new website or redesigning an old one. It's a powerful way to influence the actions of website visitors and drive them toward conversions.

For example, red and orange elicit feelings of excitement and urgency. Green, on the other hand, creates a feeling of relaxation. Both of these can be used to encourage website visitors to take action on a website's CTA.

But be careful not to push too hard. If you use the wrong colors, your audience will find it off-putting and may not respond favorably to your marketing efforts. That's why it's important to always test your designs with A/B testing. A small change, like changing a CTA button from green to yellow, can have a big impact on your conversions. A case study by Moz shows how a simple color change made a huge difference in their website's conversion rates.

Colors that Convey Safety

A website must do more than look good. It must hold users’ attention and gently guide them down a conversion funnel. It must also evoke specific emotions and provide the right impression about your company.

To do this, your colors must be able to communicate a clear message. This is why understanding color psychology in web design is essential.

For example, the color red may be effective in grabbing attention, but it is also associated with war, aggression, danger, and fire. This could send the wrong message and lead to users leaving your site.

Conversely, the color yellow is cheerful and energetic, and it can be used to convey enthusiasm, excitement, energy, and fun. The shade is often used in websites that are designed to promote a playful or exciting experience, such as Whataburger, Orange Soda, and Story Cubes. It can be paired with white or different shades of gray to achieve the best results.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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