The Science and Psychology of Color in Website Marketing

Color is ubiquitous.

You can find it anywhere and everywhere and quite often we don’t consciously think about what it means, but we do “feel” color. Those feelings are an inherent part of us. They inspire feelings of relaxation, peace, or even, caution or anger.

Why do the stars relax in a “green” room? How does a red button or sign affect us?  Why do babies cry more in a yellow room? The answer is that color has meaning to people. The meanings may change slightly over the years, but typically the basics remain the same.

In the United States, web and business research has been extensively done on the meanings and feelings  associated with certain colors. This research can be a guiding principle to you for your own web marketing. It will help you to get more clients, more clicks, and possibly more sales.

Noticing what colors do to you in your own website explorations is a great way to start. How does a certain site affect you. Does the texture or color speak to you in a way that makes you want to move to another site, or dig deeper into the one that you’re currently surfing?

Black – is representative of power or wealth. In may cases, it is popular in style and fashion magazines because black is slimming and always looks elegant. Did you know that black can also denote submission, such as in the case of a nun or a priest, who wear it to signify their servility to God? Black can also denote a darker personality or a villainous one.

White – is representative of light and purity. It is recommended that we use a lot of white space on our websites to give the impression of extra space. Too much white space comes across as barren, but some is an absolute necessity.

Blue – is one of the most popular colors. Blue implies loyalty and faith, it is considered a trust color. Deep blue and white can also imply trust and loyalty, as well as elegance. It is considered to be a safe way to announce wealth and power because you are combining that with trust. Blue is often overused so changing the color slightly, say a teal blue, would be a good way to get noticed as well as to offer that trust factor to your customers. Blue is also relaxing and allows your customer to relax doing business with you. It’s  said that weight lifters can actually lift more pounds when exercising in a blue room!

Traditionally your website will do better in blue, people will visit more pages when it is blue and your employees will be much more productive when they are working in a room that is blue or has blue trim.

Red – is among the most intense of all colors. Red can actually increase the speed of your heartbeat and impose some very serious reactions. It is also considered the color of danger. Red buttons in business websites traditionally get pressed one third less times than buttons which are blue. Red should be used as an accent color or the color to add excitement, but rarely should an entire website be created in red.

The one exception may be for a food website, since red tends to stimulate the appetite. Many restaurants are trimmed in red for this reason.

Red clothing should not be worn when in business negotiations or in any type of confrontation, nor should it be worn to an interview. Red clothing does imply more power, so if you are trying to intimidate someone, it’s a good selection.

Yellow – is sunny and warm, but also provocative. It is considered by physicians to be one of the most difficult colors to look at. It is also difficult to keep an even keel in a yellow room. Children and babies cry more frequently when they are in a yellow room. Adults find that they have feelings of anger and temper bursts when consistently exposed to yellow.

When yellow is over used on a website, it will often do well at first and then begin to do less well.

Yellow should be used to accent or to highlight other colors because it causes the attention to be focused on one thing to the exclusion of all others.

Green – can symbolize nature and as such is relaxing, but can be more relaxing than you wish. Green is also considered by most men to be one of their favorite colors, indicative of the outdoors. Deep green also implies being wealthy or rich.

If you want your website or your room to be frequented primarily by men, chances are that you can accomplish that with deep green and solid, comfortable browns.

Brown – is also indicative of nature, brown tends to be well loved and trusted. It is solid and dependable, much like grays are.

Building your websites with a nod toward color psychology is just good common sense. It can help to make your business move forward, and make your customers more comfortable.

While it is not the be-all and end-all, it is a good principle to keep in mind and can give you an extra edge, particularly when used in combination with good keyword research, creative content, and solid SEO tactics.

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