Have you ever searched for a website only to find that it just doesn’t appeal to you? What went wrong? Why weren’t you motivated to check out what the brand offers?
Several factors play a crucial role in determining the appeal and aesthetics of your site. The font style, the layout of the site, the images and the videos used, the way the content is presented – all matter a lot in determining the attractiveness of your web page. Apart from these factors, there is one more element that has the potential to make or break a website! Yes, we are talking about the colours you use on your site. By colours, we don’t just refer to the text colour but the entire colour scheme of your web page.
Choosing the Colour Scheme isn’t Child’s Play
If you think that anyone who isn’t colour blind can whip up a decent looking web page in a few minutes, then you’re wrong. For decades, website designers and digital marketers have spent plenty of time and energy, trying to crack the Ultimate Colour Code for a website.
The right colour makes all the difference between high bounce rates and getting your visitor to spend time on your site, checking out all that you offer and even helps in converting visitors to customers.
Colours and their Impact on the Human Brain
For decades, researchers have spent many hours trying to figure out how different colours influence the human brain in many ways. Let’s play a simple game. Can you close your eyes and think of the iconic beverage brand, “Coca-Cola.” Now open your eyes and answer this question, “What did you think of?” “Was it the fizzy drink or the iconic lettering of Coca-cola in bright red and white?”
We’re pretty sure that your answer is the latter. That’s the power of colours and their influence on the human brain in a nutshell for you.
Now, let’s dig a bit deeper into colour theory. Before we give you tips on how to choose the right colour palette for your website, let’s take a look at what different colours do to the human brain.
1. Dominant Red
For centuries, the colour “Red” signified “Power.” Make a list of all the things that you associate with the colour red. Blood, traffic signals, danger signals, cupids, hearts, and red roses – the list is varied and endless.
What does this mean for the colour Red? Have you ever noticed that all “Discount” or “For Sale” signs are printed only in red? This is because red is often associated with a sense of urgency. It drives people to take action. It gives the signal that something is happening and you must rush, or you’ll miss out. This is why most restaurant and food brands make use of red, to make people act subconsciously.
2. Cute Pink
We’re pretty sure that when we utter the word, “Pink” all you can think of is feminine grace and babies. Majority of women of all ages love pink. This is why websites or brands specializing in products for women are often in pink to attract the girly crowd. Also, pink spells charm. The universal logic is that anything in pink is cute, flirty and gracious.
When we speak of pink, it includes a whole range of shades. For instance, hot pink is often associated with teenage girls. Think Barbie. Whereas, light pink is often related to babies and infants. Think Johnson & Johnson. This iconic baby products brand makes use of pink on all their products for infants and kids. This is because baby pink also symbolizes purity and innocence. What better way to capture the baby products market?
3. Luxurious Purple
The first thought that pops into your mind when you think of purple is “Royalty.” For decades, purple was the preferred colour for kings and queens. Today, purple denotes luxury. A majority of luxury brands are in purple. This is because it gives a sense of exclusivity and extravagance.
Additionally, purple is also associated with a soothing effect. This is why purple is often used to denote products like deodorants, anti-ageing serums, talcum powders and other cosmetics. Think Ponds, Yardley.
4. Trusted Blue
When you think of Blue, does any bank’s logo come to your mind? State Bank of India, Canara Bank, and Federal Bank – all have logos in some shade of blue. This is because blue radiates a sense of security and safety. A few countries even provide uniforms for their police force in blue for the very reason.
When you use blue for your brand, it gives a sense of trust to your customers.
5. Sophisticated Black
It symbolises elegance and sophistication. Think iPhone. It’s a colour that is equally preferred by men and women. This is why several iconic automobile brands endorse black. It denotes style, vigour, luxury, and sophistication.
6. Cheerful Yellow and Inviting Orange
Did you know that 85% of customers make their final decisions based on colour? Isn’t that a bit scary? Here are a few expert tips to help you nail it right.
#1: Understand the relationship between colours and emotions
Different colours trigger different emotions. The key here is to make yourself familiar with the palette of emotions and their associated colours. Once you get the basics right, it becomes easy to proceed forward. Also, geographical locations matter a lot. For instance, red is considered good luck in China while it’s associated with mourning in South Africa. So, consider the geographical reach of your brand when choosing colours.
#2: Don’t fail to factor in the traits of your customer demographic
Ask yourself these questions:
- Who is your target audience?
- What’s their average age?
- What type of emotion are you trying to invoke in your potential customer?
Finding the answer to these questions is a good starting point. Identifying the personality and emotions, you wish to achieve in your target audience will point you in the right direction.
#3: Be Gender Specific
This is a fundamental question that you have to ask yourself. If you’re a brand that caters to women, then choosing colours that are preferred by women will work in your favour. On the contrary, if you are a brand who specialises in unisex products, then opting for neutral colours will bring you better results.
#4: Let go of your Personal Preferences
You may love brown, but it doesn’t mean that your target audience will embrace it. This is one major flaw that is committed by several brands. Don’t make the grave mistake of choosing a colour scheme based on your personal preference. Instead, make your choices based on sound psychology.
For instance, if your favourite colour is blue, then you may be tempted to make it your primary colour. But if you deal with cosmetics, then choosing purple or pink to attract your target audience may be a better choice.
#5: Don’t use too many colours
You would have heard the saying, “Too many cooks spoil the broth.” This applies to your colour choices. When you opt for too many, it can make your page look cluttered and chaotic.
#6: Decide on the number of colours to use
While there is no magic number that fits all, here’s a rule of thumb to help you.
It’s called the “60-30-10” rule.
- 60% dominant colour
- 30% secondary colour
- 10% accent colour
This rule is used by interior designers to achieve perfect harmony.
#7: Make use of Tools to lighten your work
Remember the colour wheel you had in art class? That can be a huge help when it comes to choosing the right colour scheme for your site. In the colour wheel, when you select a particular colour, the next one should be an analogous colour (similar) or a complementary colour (opposite) to provide the best impact.
You can also make use of online tools like Colorspire to point you in the right direction. This is an easy and efficient way to test out different colour combinations and gives you an idea of how different colours look on a website.
The Bottom Line
Colours impact your customers in a big way. The right colours can help in getting your customers stay on your page, check out your products and services and even improves customer conversions.
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