Communicate with Color

A guide to choosing the perfect color palette for your website

Color is a visitor's first point of engagement with a website. This makes choosing the correct color scheme essential.

Not only do color choices, create brand awareness, they actually trigger specific emotions and influence conversion rates.

A user’s opinion of a product is formed by their interaction with its color - which can positively or negatively impact their engagement. Color can be a deciding factor in whether a visitor keeps browsing a website or leaves after a few seconds. The importance of learning to communicate with color cannot be overstated.

Carefully consider which emotions you want your visitors to experience and associate with your website and then employ colors that will promote those responses. If you want to establish a sense of trust, choose blue. If it’s optimism, select yellow. Red represents energy. Black is symbolic of luxury. Green equates growth and tranquility.

Color surveys also demonstrate that gender plays an important role in color preferences. Studies show that women prefer blue, purple and green but not orange, brown or gray. While men respond positively to blue, green and black but not purple, orange and brown. Be sure to evaluate your palette choices according to the gender of your audience.  

Chromatic harmony creates an enjoyable user experience. Avoid color overload which causes a feeling of confusion. Today’s design trends emphasise a limited palette of 4 to 5 colors, balanced with plenty of white space for a sense of expansiveness.

Learn to use color strategically. Conversion is increased by isolating a bright colored call-to-action button with white space - the contrast directs the visitor’s attention to it.

Logos can often dictate a website’s color scheme. But if you’re floundering to compose a balanced palette, there are plenty of color generators that can serve up stunning color combinations.

With Coolors, all that’s necessary to generate the perfect color palette is a press of the spacebar. Or you can enter a hex value as a starting point. It’s that simple.

Material Palette prompts you to select two colors and then generates a palette of eight colors based on those choices. It also delivers up suggestions for the placement and use of each color from primary to accent, from text to icon.

For inspiration, browse through the curated palette collection at Color Hunt. Having been reviewed and handpicked, its homepage features the very best of its user-contributed color combinations.

Color is only one element in designing a website but its ability to visually and emotively communicate is profound. Make sure that you don’t miss this opportunity to engage with your audience.