It is a scientific fact that colors can have psychological effects on people. Properly used on a website, colors can go hand in hand with graphics and well-written content to effectively communicate to your target audience and even compel them to make the desired call to action. Colors can be a great design element that can help visitors with site’s navigation, the grouping of content and their relative importance, relationships, etc.
It is, thus, important for web designers to know the subliminal effects of different colors and their combination can make. The colors they choose can either work for or against them, depending on how a visitor unconsciously reacts to them during that critical first few seconds.
Below is a list of color qualities that can have both positive and negative meanings:
Red is commonly associated with love, passion, danger, warning, excitement, food, impulse, action, adventure and is, thus, good in attracting attention. In it’s negative side, red evokes aggressive feelings, and can suggest anger or violence.
Blue has a calming effect on people. It evokes a sense of belonging and trust, reliability, coolness, peacefulness, tranquility, security and is often associated with high quality, faithfulness and dignity.
In its negative side, it can imply alienation, sadness, passivity, or depression.
Yellow evokes feelings of happiness, warmth, and sunshine. But in its negative side, over-use of yellow can cause eye-strain and vague feelings of irritation.
Orange evokes feelings of playfulness, pleasure, approachability, informality and warmth. Orange and black together are often associated with ambition and drive. in the negative side orange may imply a lack of discrimination or quality.
Green is easiest on the eyes. It is usually associated with feelings of growth and abundance. Also, depending on the shade, green can bring to mind nature, healing, freshness, money and freedom. Some shades of green, on the other hand, suggest decay, fungus, mold, toxicity, etc.
Purple is the color of royalty, dignity, sophistication and spirituality. Purple can evoke feelings of luxury and abundance.
Violet evokes feelings of playfulness, impulsiveness, and fantasy. In its negative side, it can suggest nightmares or madness.
Pink evokes feelings of being nurtured or pampered. It is also associated with sweetness and femininity.
White is most often considered pure, innocent, clean and mild.
Black evokes feelings of elegance, authority, sophistication, and power. Black is often associated with mystery, sobriety and seduction. In its negative side, it represents evil, sorrow and death.
Gray evokes a sense of solidity and reliability. Grey is associated with authority, creativity and practicality.
Brown evokes feelings of masculinity, reliability and affectivity. Brown is associated with dependability and affluence.
Gold evokes feelings of prestige, influence and money.
Silver evokes the same feelings as gold, but silver can also be perceived as cold, hard and distant.
Tips for web designers on using colors for websites:
Use colors that would match the overall theme of your website and the impression you want your visitors to get. Avoid choosing colors based on what you like.
Use a color scheme that would enhance your website and your content not distract or confuse your users.
Colors can have different effects on people. For example, men prefer blue to red, while women prefer red to blue. Also, men prefer orange over yellow, while women prefer yellow over orange. Furthermore, a website designed for a younger audience should use brighter colors than a website for an older audience, which should use sober and restrained colors. web designers should take these are facts backed by academic studies into consideration when picking colors for their websites.
Different cultures have different meanings for colors. Keep your target audience in mind when you choose a color scheme. Choose two or three main colors and one or two secondary colors, and stick with them throughout your entire website.
For consistent colors across different monitors and browsers, Use web safe colors. Employ colors that come from the 216 colors that can be displayed on every type of monitor in every web browser.
Make sure to use uniform color scheme all throughout your web site. This is essential to create a “brand” for your site and prevents your visitors from getting “lost”.
Use lots of blank space between design elements and content elements. Blank spaces act as a wonderful balance between your other design elements. You can also make your web pages easier on the eyes by leaving blank space between blocks of text.
If you are planning of building your website or updating an old one, it is ideal to rely on the help of experienced designers and developers who are knowledgeable in all aspects of custom web design – including the use of colors. This will ensure you and your company that no time and resources are wasted on creating a website that best represents your company and sells your products and services effectively.