The Psychology behind colors and their effects on modern Web Designs

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So, What is the Color Psychology?

The colors play an important role in every Website design. Each color affects Human mind. The Colors decide if the visitors are going to stay on your website or not and they decide this in only first 8 seconds! So you have to please your customers in these 8 seconds! You must have to follow the color psychology if you are planning to launch a Webstore or already have one as you are going to sell your products. So Follow the psychology and increase your sells!

What is color?

In the year of 1666, English scientist Sir Isaac Newton discovered that, "when pure white light passes through a prism, it separates into all of the visible colors. Newton also found that each color is made up of a single wavelength and cannot be separated any further into other colors."

Color Types :
Warm colors
- Colors such as red, yellow and orange are known as warm colors. It can represent variety of emotions like comfort and warmth to hostility and anger.
Cool colors
- Colors such as green, blue and purple are known as cool colors. It can represent feelings of calmness as well as sadness.

Basic things about color:

Each color is perceived differently by different people and has a different effect on everyone based on the Color Psychology. You never define the range of the color because if you add two colors you will find new range of the color. The color word itself is very cheerful to spell and the colors are as best as they spell. Every color has its own characteristic and importance for developing something with it. People have some innate relation with colors and every color represent different culture also. Colors affect our moods, feelings and emotions as well.

Color as powerful Communication tool:

Everything in this world has a color and every color has a different psychological meaning associated with it. For example sun looks orange and orange is fiery; moon looks white and white represents peace and calm, and trees are green. Because every single object has its own color we can easily differentiate that particular thing.
Just imagine if all objects had same color than what would happen?How would we imagine that thing? Because when anyone says imagine an apple than how do we start to image an apple? The first thing come into our mind is its color. What color an apple has? After we're done thinking that an apple is red then only we move on to other things like its shape and taste. So colors make easy communication. People can imagine particular thing on the basis of its color.
We can communicate better through the color as every color represents some particular thing so that we can use it for communicating with people. For example advertisements use different color.

How colors affect Purchases?

It's hard enough to attract potential customers to browse through a store but to actually convert them into buyers is a tough cookie to crack. We need to get into the depths of human psychology and understand how colors may affect their decisions. There is a practical technique used in how the products are organized, labels are written and sections are ordered. By using psychological theories and practices we can convert visitors into regular buyer.
One of the most powerful methods to appeal potential buyers is applying color theory to Ecommerce. Color is considered to be one of the most powerful elements of design for web sites, direct mail and other marketing materials.

Color and Marketing

Majority of the companies are now deciding their marketing strategies according to various researches done on the psychological effects of color on a potential buyer. Above chart show that 93% buyers buy product on the basis of visual appearance of the site which contain all the factors like colors, menu effects etc. and 6% buyers buy the product on the basis of texture and only 1% buyer buy the product on the basis of sound/smell. 85% of shoppers place color as a primary reason for why they buy a particular product.

Color & Branding:

Color increases brand recognition by 80% and brand recognition directly links to consumer confidence.

Color & Consumer:

Each color has psychological effects on the moods and choices of a person. This image represents each color with what different kinds of inherent feelings they invoke into a consumer when they are looking at a website

Colors and the their symbolic meanings
Colors and the their symbolic meanings

Every color represents its own meaning and relations and effects on our minds:

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Red

  • Being represented for fire and blood Red is the color normally recognized to depict strong emotions, lot of energy, strength and power.
  • It is also the color of love and represents passion, courage and strong desire.
  • Red is extremely visible so is mostly used in signs such as stoplight and for fire equipment.
  • It is perfect color for 'Buy Now' or 'Click Here' buttons on internet banners and websites because of red color people make quick decisions.
  • Since this color is mostly associated with energy, it can be used when promoting energy drinks, games, cars.

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Orange

  • Orange color is a combination of Red and yellow so naturally it derives both of their characteristics, the energy of Red and the openness and happiness of yellow.
  • Orange is also the color of sunshine.
  • It can be used to represent curiosity, excitement determination, attraction, success and encouragement.
  • Orange brings out our creative side and stimulates fascination. It's a refreshing color that increases mental activity.
  • Younger demographic generally prefers this color and due to high visibility it can be used to highlight important links or catch attention of the visitors.
  • You can use orange to promote toys and food products.

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Yellow

  • Yellow, the most happy and cool color represents sunshine.
  • People feel happy and fresh when see yellow anywhere as it is known as a symbol of joy intellect and energy.
  • It generates a kind of glowing and warming effect and arouses cheerfulness in feelings. It's a flashy color so can be used to display highlights in web sites.
  • Overuse of yellow can be a bit cheesy so it is advised not to use when selling expensive or collectible things for men.Nobody would like to buy a yellow Armani! Yellow is a spontaneous color so if you want to come off as more stable and safe, better not use it.

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Green

  • There is a famous song I've heard, "I see trees of green%u2026 red roses too%u2026" Even the songs tell us the general feeling about green color.
  • It represents nature and so in turn it suggests a feeling of growth, safety (walk when the signal is green!) and freshness (fresh leaves are green).
  • Green has a healing power.
  • Green is commonly associated with money as well.
  • It is a pleasing color for the eyes.
  • It can improve vision and endurance.
  • The freshness of green can be taken as beginning of something and therefore sometimes associated with lack of experience.
  • In conclusion green color can be used to promote safety of medical products as well as dark green can be used in financial or banking related sites.

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Blue

  • Blue sky and Blue Ocean suggests limitless expansion in all directions.
  • Blue says I am stable and dependable.
  • It is a symbol for loyalty, trust, wisdom, faith and transparency.
  • It's a calm color that is beneficial for the mind and body.
  • Taking a step further darker shade of blue represents a stronger feeling of trust, depth in experience and expertise. This particular characteristic makes blue the official color for corporate sites.
  • Blue should be used with warm colors like yellow or red to create vibrant and more effective designs. Never use blue in food or cooking related sites as it is said to suppress appetite.

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Purple

  • Purple is a mixture of blue and red and needless to say inherits both of their characters.
  • Purple is stable and energetic color.
  • It is said to be a royal color.
  • It comes with a feeling of richness for the eyes as well as a feeling of power, luxury and ambition.
  • Most kids prefer purple color for some reason.
  • Some people might suggest that it's an artificial color as it's rarely seen in nature but use of this color in a site will suggest wisdom, dignity and creativity.

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White

  • When we think of or see white color a kind of calm feeling creeps in our minds.
  • Pure and clean things are associated with white color.
  • White means perfection. White means no blemishes.
  • It sends a positive vibe to the onlooker.
  • It can suggest a new start for something.
  • White advocates faith, coolness and simplicity.
  • White can be used in corporate sites to give an air of simplicity to the products.
  • It is appropriate color for NGOs as we all know angels are always imagined in white clothes.
  • It represents safety and heaven. It could be also used to promote medical products and low-fat, low weight food or dairy products.

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Black

  • Black is a strong color showing off strong feelings.
  • It mostly associated with powerful elegance, formality and mystery.
  • Darkness of a night can be associated with the unknown and therefore black represents fear, evil, death and almost anything that is negative.
  • Black means authority. Majority of business people wear black suits.
  • It is a prestigious color (black tie, black Mercedes). It gives you perspective and depth.
  • Some people say wearing black makes you look slimmer.
  • Black goes well with contrasting light colors.
  • Sometimes it can be used to give a bit aggressive color scheme to your site.

Other factors that affect the purchase decision

Overall Design:

For many online shoppers poor website navigability and poor overall design is the reason why they choose not to purchase from a particular website. You may not give much importance to the layout or colors of a site but the color scheme is essential to the marketing, branding and popularity of a particular site depending upon how deep an effect those colors imprinted on the minds of your potential buyers.

The Element of Time:

Speed, efficiency and convenience are one of the many reasons why shoppers are turning to internet retailers. Having a web site that runs even five seconds slower than your competitors could mean a huge economic loss.

Power Words:

Retailers rely on the ability for words to evoke emotions in consumers. The right 'power' word could be the differences between consumers purchasing an identical item at one retail shop over the other.

Trust in Color

We can see in the above chart there are different colors which are rated in percentage. The percentages of trust means in which color people trust most.
In chart the blue color has highest % of trust but that does not mean that people trust most in blue so we have to design our website in blue color all over. We have to use colors as our site requires and we should take care of all colors' effects in the site.
Every color has its effects on sites as well as people's minds so design that way. And the less % of trust is orange color so it also does not mean that not to use orange at all in sites don't forget orange is very useful to grab the attraction of the people.

Polls Time!

Which color do you trust more?

  • Blue
  • White
  • Green
  • Purple
See results without voting

Some guideline for designers:

  • When you design a site or anything first of all you should understand the requirement of the particular site or client, what exactly they want in their design.
  • We can use all colors in design but we must know what effect the color has while using it in a design. We should use color as the requirement of design for example kids like purple most and if we do not use it in kids’ website so it does not have the effect as it should.
  • We should use colors that would match the overall theme of our website and what kind of visitor the site has. Avoid choosing colors based on what you like.
  • While your site contains of mostly text at that time you should use a color scheme that would enhance your website and your content not distract or confuse your users or visitors.
  • The color has different meaning in different cultures. You should keep your target users in mind and design in that way and choose color on that basis. When you design, fix one or two as main colors and one or two colors as secondary colors and stick those colors throughout the design.
  • Designer should also take care for browser compatibility of the colors, it may happen that some color is not supported by some browser and it look something else than what we designed. So designer should use the combination of 216 which is preferred by all browsers.
  • If you follow some particular color scheme than uniform it throughout the site. This is necessary to create a brand of your site and also helps in not losing the visitors.
  • Make neat and clean visibility of your site and for that use blank spaces between design elements.

Colors are a very important factor for increasing purchases but it is not the only factor. There are many other factors which can affect the purchase decision of the buyer. We should not focus only the colors but also other factors like Store Display and Presentation of Products, Ambiance of the Store, Customer Treatment, Store Design and Layout etc. The store should focus on all the aspects and not only on the colors.

Using too much color can also be disadvantageous for the store. People like simplicity with attractiveness. So make your store as simple as possible and easy to understand.

Share Your Voice

Share you views about Colors and the Psychology after it. What do you feel about colors? What color do you trust more? Which color attracts you? If you're going to launch your website, which color you're going to put in it? Looking forward to your comments!

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