A person can set up a website to serve any purpose he or she has in mind. Some do it to push a social or political agenda, while many do it to make money.
Whatever their purpose, webmasters are primarily concerned with getting conversions. A conversion could come in the form of a subscription to a newsletter, someone filling out a contact form, or a visitor buying a product or service being offered.
While increased traffic and higher ranking in search results are important indicators of a website’s success, there is nothing like getting conversions to tell a webmaster that he or she is doing things right.
One could have massive amounts of traffic and skyrocketing rankings and still get few to no conversions.
A lot of factors affect conversion rates. Not too many people realize, however, that the color used in the web design is one of them.
Colors make a website look pretty, but they do more than that. The colors you use on your website can also bring out certain reactions, emotions, and attitudes from your visitors, at least according to color psychology.
What is color psychology?
A sub-field of behavioral psychology, color psychology focuses on how colors affect human behavior. It studies colors and the emotions, attitudes, and values associated with them.
Here are some basic colors and the human behaviors associated with them.
Blue has always been associated with calmness and serenity. It’s also a cool color and is believed to have the capability to lower people’s blood pressure and heart rate.
As an idiom in the English language, blue is synonymous with being sad.
Blue is a popular color for businesses, as it represents stability, reliability, security, intelligence, and trust, qualities that organizations would like to possess and project to the community.
If you’re a marketer and you’d like to create a sense of urgency, there is no better color to use in your materials than red.
An ad for a clearance sale, for example, with a very red background can send people’s hearts racing when they see it. In all likelihood, they will rush to where the sale is happening so they won’t miss out on the discounts being offered.
Red is also commonly known as the color of passion, which could range from love to jealousy and danger.
Being the color of sunshine, yellow naturally fills people with a sense of cheerfulness and optimism.
Some people also claim that the sight of anything yellow makes them feel a bit younger.
Yellow can get overwhelming though, especially when there’s too much of it. Go easy on using yellow when designing your website.
When you mix yellow and red, you get orange. Consequently, the associations with both colors come out in orange as well.
Like yellow, orange also brings out the cheer in people. It creates a sense of urgency as well, just like red. It’s also an excellent color to use if you want to catch attention. Proof of this is the fact that many web designers prefer to use orange for their call-to-action buttons.
In the West, white is inexorably linked to innocence or purity. It’s also associated with cleanliness and hygiene, which is probably why it’s most commonly used in the healthcare industry. White uniforms and white walls are pretty standard in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics, and laboratories.
The use of green is pretty much a given for ads, websites, and other marketing materials for anything that touches on environmental concerns.
Green, however, is also associated with decisiveness. Like blue, green is easy on the eyes and promotes calmness, peace, and relaxation.
Black may be most commonly associated with death, doom, and gloom, but it’s more than that.
Black exudes elegance and sophistication that makes it a popular choice for ads featuring cosmetics, fashion, and luxury products.
There’s also a reason why the phrase “black is beautiful” was coined. Black is great for promoting power and edginess as well.
Color psychology is key to success
For web designers and marketers worth their salt, understanding colors and the human behaviors associated with them is a key ingredient for success.
As long as they choose colors wisely, they have a much better chance of eliciting the reactions they want to get conversions and further their agenda, whether it’s social, political, or just plain business.
However, it must be said that the behavioral associations made by color psychology are by no means watertight. Our personal preferences and experiences make us see and respond to colors differently.
Still, the associations as laid down by color psychology come close to the truth. Color psychology generally gets the behavioral links to the color right, which is something not lost on web designers and marketers. They wouldn’t be applying color psychology to their work if those associations are nowhere near reality.
Choosing your web design colors to boost conversions
When your agenda or business can be categorized under the fields mentioned earlier in this article, it’s natural for you to go for the colors closely associated with them: Green for environmental causes or products, white for healthcare-related concerns, and so on.
Generally, however, you must research your target market first, since it’s the best way to determine the color that will make them react the way you want them to react. Your research must consider gender, age, cultural upbringing, and other essential factors.
Women and men, for example, have their own color preferences. If you’re selling to either gender or both of them, then you need to find out what colors they like and apply the scheme to your web design.
If your website is geared towards children, then your web design could benefit from a splash of vibrant colors like yellow, green, or even red.
Performing A/B testing is also a great way of finding out which color combinations and placements work best for generating leads and ultimately, conversions.
Guest author: Anthony Tisara is the Outreach Manager at My Biz Niche, the go-to Phoenix-based digital marketing agency specializing in effective SEO and stunning web design solutions built to capture your target audience and generate more leads. He enjoys traveling with his family and organizing weekly trivia events with his friends.