Let’s face it!
There is a lot more to colors than meets the eye. If anything, 85% of the shoppers base their product purchase decisions on product color. And, as it turns out, some of the world’s top-notch brands are very particular about their color choices, whether it’s Coca-Cola with its fiery fire-engine red or Pepsi’s with its predominant blue.
In fact, if you look at their logos, you will see that both these companies have interestingly used their choicest colors to stand out and build their brand identity.
As per a research, “Color increases brand recognition by 80 percent.”
The point is: Big companies don’t simply wing it when it comes to choosing colors for their websites or products. Conversely, they are strategically chosen because colors, powered by different attributes, attract shoppers to the product or site. Not to mention, colors alter consumer behavior well.
Now, with the internet providing a level-playing field to all, not just big brands, every small and big website are significantly focussing on getting their websites colored in a correct way.
However, here’s the rub:
There are no fewer than 10 million colors that a human eye can witnesses. I repeat 10 million colors.
So, with a million colors swarming before the eyes, I daresay picking and choosing that one right color, to form the base of your website, is not an easy job.
And, mind you, you cannot simply wing it as there’s so much at stake...among others, your website’s bounce rate, conversions and more depend on colors.
I know what you are thinking now:
How to pick the starting color (dominant color) for your website with so many to choose from?
Here, I walk you through simple tips and tricks on choosing the starting color for your website.
#a. First off, make the most of what you already have. That is, use the color of the existing logo as your starting color.
Never mind competitor’s colors. In fact, you need to delete competitors’ colors from all your color schemes.
#b. Look at your target audience. The website color of an IT company will be diametrically opposite to that of a real estate company. So, it’s paramount to think about the users who will be using the site and the kind of emotions you want them to go through while browsing your site. Should they be excited, serious and so on?
#c. Think of the words you frequently use in your conversations with regards to your brand. See, if you can connect those words with any of the colors.
Finally, stay away from stereotypes. If the website is meant for bridal wear, look beyond the white and cream shades. Because it is said that clichés tend to undermine your credibility.
Some of the colors you can start experimenting with include red, green, blue, pink, yellow, and so on. For more ideas on website design and colors, consult top web design companies.
Now, let me elaborate in detail the above-mentioned three points for selecting the starting color of your website.
Remember: The starting color of your website will be your brand color, maybe forever. So, choose something that your brand invariably associates with. A color that your audience fancies the moment they think of you and even nudges them to check your site.
Like, I mentioned before, the moment you think of Coca-Cola, nothing but a conflagration of fiery red floods your sights. If you think about it for a moment, you will realize that Coca-Cola’s starting color (popularly referred to as the dominant color) stems from its logo.
So, if you are finding it difficult to arrive at the starting color of your website, don’t worry and do just one thing: Go by the logo color.
Again, if this seems difficult for you, you can go by the other methods as well:
If the logo thing doesn’t help, simply take a break from your web designing activities and reflect on your brand and the kind of customers you want to linger on your site.
Should they be a really young crowd? Or should you be targeting highly sophisticated ones with huge disposal incomes? Or should they be gender-specific - geared toward male or female? Or should you focus on a specific age group?
Also, what sort of emotions you want them to experience while seeing your site?
You need to find answers to all these and more, before narrowing down the starting color of your website.
You can also take cues from other websites and see what they are doing. Most often, sites tend to play safe and go by conventions. For instance, if you check an organic product site, subtle colors like light green, light blue and occur yellow are commonplace over bold colors like red, purple and black.
In short, consider the emotions and personality of your target audience before deciding the starting color of your website.
When it comes to gender, for instance, if your website focuses only on women, might as well go by their favorite color:
As you can see from the above images, blue is liked both by men and women. So, it’s one of the safest bets as far as your website color goes.
No wonder, most-visited social media sites like Facebook and Twitter use blue prominently in their logos and campaigns. But then, there’s nothing like one-size-fits-all in terms of a website color. It chiefly depends on the feelings you want to convey to your visitors.
Think of the words you frequently relate your brand with. Then connect these words with various available colors.
Check out this color emotion guide to nail down the starting color of your website.
Tips to use the starting color on your website
There’s a general rule of thumb to follow when it comes to using starting colors:
Use them only in specific spaces where you want your visitors to pay attention.
# Phone numbers
# Contact forms
# Signing up of a newsletter
Basically, starting color is supposed to be used in those spaces that need to pop out.
#2. Choose Accent (Complementary) Colors
Once you have nailed down the starting color of your website, finding complementary or accent colors will become easier. However, as the name suggests, they are complementary colors and should not to be widely used in websites. So, use them only in your call to action buttons, quotes, subtitles, information boxes and more. These colors help highlight the attention-worthy parts of your website.
However, here’s the rub: Blending various colors is not easy if you haven’t understood the color theory well. And, who knows, you may have to go through several trials and errors, before arriving at your perfect accent colors.
Tips to use complementary colors on your website
Accent colors are primarily used for highlighting secondary information on your web pages. The content, though not important, has to stand out. Nonetheless, there’s a limit to using accent colors, max 1 or 2. If you plan to use many accent colors, it might create several focal points which might confuse the visitors.
#3. Choose your Background Color
Your website visitors should feel at home while browsing your site. So, bold colors most likely will have an opposite effect on them. And, even blase background could prove to be a bad choice as your audience might overlook the crucial points you want them to focus on.
But then, it’s also nice to choose your colors depending on your industry you belong to. For instance, if your brand is into cosmetics, you might enjoy a free hand in terms of choosing your colors. You can either experiment with either with subtle colors or opt for alternative bold colors. Bold colors like red are known to drive visitors in colossal numbers.
Tips to use background color on your website
# If you are running a content heavy website or an eCommerce website, keep your background neutral or use shades of white. This is because the focus should be on the content of the site. And a white background might just draw more eyeballs to your content.
# For a corporate website, you can try you using less intense shades of your starting color. Bold colors might overpower the other key elements of the site. The background color should stay in the background. It shouldn’t overwhelm the visitors.
# For sites that are into fashion, beauty, restaurant, and other similar industries, you are free to experiment with most of the colors. There is no actual rule of thumb to follow as to what background image or colors are ideal for creative sites. For all I know, you can use all the colors of VIBGYOR or create magic using black and other bolder looking colors. The only point that you need to bear in mind is that your color shouldn’t overpower the text. Content should invariably be the king of your website. To ensure balance between colors and content, speak to the top content marketing agencies, directly.
Putting it all together
By now you know that you can’t simply wing it when it comes to website colors. You need to go by your audience tastes and liking, because that’s only the way to establish connections with your audience. More importantly, your accent colors should be carefully chosen and not randomly applied.
Follow the above 3 steps to create a beautiful color coordinated website. Also, don’t forget to use color combination tools if you are still a novice in terms of selecting complementary colors.
But then, always remember, colors shouldn’t overshadow the content. Never ever.
How do you choose the starting color of your website or product? Go ahead! Share your experiences below.
Author Bio: This is Jennifer Warren, a Content Consultant with GoodFirms, a review and research platform for eCommerce development companies, digital marketing companies among many others. I enjoy humanizing technology through inspirational content, devouring best sellers, watching war movies, and running behind my sunshine sons.