Kissmetrics Blog

A blog about analytics, marketing and testing

Built to optimize growth. Track, analyze and engage to get more customers.

How to Use the Psychology of Color to Increase Website Conversions

Color wields enormous sway over our attitudes and emotions. When our eyes take in a color, they communicate with a region of the brain known as the hypothalamus, which in turn sends a cascade of signals to the pituitary gland, on to the endocrine system, and then to the thyroid glands. The thyroid glands signal the release of hormones, which cause fluctuation in mood, emotion, and resulting behavior.

Research from QuickSprout indicates that 90% of all product assessments have to do with color. “Color,” writes Neil Patel, is “85% of the reason you purchased a specific product.” It’s a no-brainer fact of any website that color affects conversions. Big time.

So, the bottom line is: use the right colors, and you win.

What is Color Psychology?

In order to really appreciate the tips below, you’ll benefit from a little information on color psychology.

Color psychology is the science of how color affects human behavior. Color psychology actually is a branch of the broader field of behavioral psychology. Suffice it to say that it’s a pretty complicated field. Some skeptics are even dismissive of the whole field of color psychology, due to the difficulty of testing theories. My own research on the topic, as this article conveys, lacks scientific evidence to back up every claim. But that alone is no reason to dismiss the profound and unarguable effect that color has on people.

There are key facts of color theory that are indisputable. In a peer reviewed journal article, Satyendra Singh determined that it takes a mere 90 seconds for a customer to form an opinion about a product. And, 62-90% of that interaction is determined by the color of the product alone.

Color psychology is a must-study field for leaders, office managers, architects, gardeners, chefs, product designers, packaging designers, store owners, and even expectant parents painting the nursery for the new arrival! Color is critical. Our success depends upon how we use color.

Where Should You Use Color?

Let’s get oriented to our context. Since color is ubiquitous, we need to understand where you should use these color tips. This article discusses the use of color in website design. Specifically, we’re talking about the color scheme of a website, which includes the tint of hero graphics, headline type, borders, backgrounds, buttons, and popups.

In the example below, NinjaJump uses a green-yellow-red color scheme in their logo, phone number, video C2A, menu bar, graphics, category menu, sub headings, and sidebar. The tips that we discuss below can be applied in similar ways — menus, sidebars, color schemes, etc.

Using the Right Color in the Right Way

Color is a tricky thing. You have to use it in the right way, at the right time, with the right audience, and for the right purpose.

For example, if you are selling bouncy jump houses — those things that kids play in — you don’t want to use a black website. Props,

1 ninja jump

For the jump house site, you want lots of bright and vibrant colors, probably some reds, greens, and maybe a splash of yellow for good measure. If, on the other hand, you’re selling a product to women, you don’t want to use brown or orange. Maybe that’s why L’oreal uses black and white, with purple overlay, in their e-commerce homepage.

2 loreal

I’ll explain all the tricks below. In order to succeed at using the right color psychology, you need to follow these core principles:

The right way

The right time

The right audience

The right purpose

Here are some tips that the pros use when dealing with conversions and color.

Color Tips that Will Improve Your Conversions

1. Women don’t like gray, orange, and brown. They like blue, purple, and green.

The sociological differences between color preferences is a whole branch of study unto itself. Patel got it right when he cited the colors preferred, and disliked, by the two genders.

3 color targeting demographics

Image from:

In a survey on color and gender, 35% of women said blue was their favorite color, followed by purple (23%) and green (14%). 33% of women confessed that orange was their least favorite color, followed by brown (33%) and gray (17%).

Other studies have corroborated these findings, revealing a female aversion to earthy tones, and a preference for primary colors with tints. Look at how this is played out. Visit nearly any e-commerce site whose target audience is female, and you’ll find these female color preferences affirmed.

Milani Cosmetics has a primarily female customer base. Thus, there’s not a shred of orange, gray, or brown on the homepage:

4 milani website

Woman’s Day uses all three of the favorite colors of women (blue, purple, and green) on their homepage, thus inviting in their target audience:

5 womans day website

Most people think that the universally-loved female color is pink. It’s not. Just a small percentage of women choose pink as their favorite color. Thus, while pink may suggest femininity in color psychology, this doesn’t mean that pink is appealing to all women, or even most women. Use colors other than pink — like blue, purple, and green — and you may improve the appeal of your e-commerce website to female visitors. And that may, in turn, improve conversions.

2. Men don’t like purple, orange, and brown. Men like blue, green, and black.

If you’re marketing to men, these are the colors to stay away from: purple, orange, and brown. Instead, use blue, green, and black. These colors — blue, green, and black — are traditionally associated with maleness. However, it comes as a slight surprise to some that brown isn’t a favorite pick.

3. Use blue in order to cultivate user’s trust.

Blue is one of the most-used colors, with good reason. A lot of people like blue.

Read the literature on blue, and you’ll come across messages like

  • The color blue is a color of trust, peace, order, and loyalty.
  • Blue is the color of corporate America and it says, “Chill . . . believe and trust me . . . have confidence in what I am saying!” (source)
  • Blue calls to mind feelings of calmness and serenity. It often is described as peaceful, tranquil, secure, and orderly. (source)

There is wide agreement in the research community on the psychological effects of the color blue. Its subtle message of trustworthiness and serenity is true. You can use this to your advantage on your website and landing pages.

The world’s biggest social network is blue. For a company whose core values are transparency and trust, this probably is not an accident.

6 facebook homepage

A company that serves as a conduit for billions of dollars, PayPal, also prefers the color blue. Chances are, this helps to improve their trustworthiness. If they were to try, say, red or orange as the theme color and branding, they probably wouldn’t have the same level of conversion.

7 paypal website

Blue is, in fact, a color heavily used by many banks. Here’s, a major Internet bank:

8 capital one website

Although blue is pretty much an all-round great color, it should never be used for anything related to food. Dieters have used blue plates to successfully prevent them from eating more. Evolutionary theory suggests that blue is a color associated with poison. There aren’t very many blue foods — blueberries and plums just about cover it. Thus, never use blue if you’re selling foodie stuff.

4. Yellow is for warnings.

Yellow is a color of warning. Hence, the color yellow is used for warning signs, traffic signals, and wet floor signs.

9 two way sign

10 caution wet floor

It seems odd, then, that some color psychologists declare yellow to be the color of happiness. Business Insider reports that “brands use yellow to show that they’re fun and friendly.” There is a chance that yellow can suggest playfulness. However, since yellow stimulates the brain’s excitement center, the playfulness feeling may be simply a state of heightened emotion and response, not exactly sheer joy.

Color psychology is closely tied to memories and experiences. So, if someone had a very pleasant experience with someone wearing a yellow shirt, eating at a fast food establishment with yellow arches, or living in a home with yellow walls, then the yellow color may cause joy by memory association.

One of the most-cited “facts” about the color yellow is that it makes babies cry and people angry. To date, I have not found any study that backs up this claim, even though everyone is fairly comfortable repeating it.

11 google serp

I’ve even read that “the color yellow can cause nausea,” though I’m doubtful about this.

12 yellow causes nausea

If you find the study about cranky babies and angry people living in yellow-walled houses, please let me know. I’m pretty sure that babies are going to cry and people are going to get ticked, regardless of the paint color. Whatever the case, it does seem true that “yellow activates the anxiety center of the brain,” as reported by one color expert.

A heightened anxiety level during any website experience is never a good thing, unless it comes in small doses. Thus, a yellow call to action may create just a touch of anxiety that’s needed to make them click the desired call to action.

Use yellow in small doses unless you want to cause unnecessary anxiety.

5. Green is ideal for environmental and outdoor products.

Perhaps the most intuitive color connection is green — the color of outdoors, eco-friendly, nature, and the environment. Green essentially is a chromatic symbol for nature itself.

Apart from its fairly obvious outdoorsy suggestiveness, green also is a color that can improve creativity. Labeled “the green effect,” one study indicated that participants had more bursts of creativity when presented with a flash of green color as opposed to any other color.

If the focus of your website has anything to do with nature, environment, organic, or outdoors, green should be your color of choice.

Green isn’t just about nature, though. Green also is a good call to action color, especially when used in combination with the “isolation effect,” also known as the von Restorff effect, which states that you remember things better if they stand out. You remember the Statue of Liberty because it’s big, tall, green, and there aren’t a whole lot of them in the New York harbor. In color psychology, the isolation effect occurs when a focus item, such as a conversion step, is the only item of a particular color. The technique works wonders for calls to action, and green is an ideal choice.

Here’s how Conrad Feagin uses it:

13 discover how

All of Dell’s conversion elements are green.

14 dell pricing page

15 dell inspiron

The word “green” itself is a buzzword for environmental awareness and appreciation. Using the word and the color itself can lend an environmental aura to your website, improving your reputation among those who are passionate about environmental concerns.

5. Orange is a fun color that can create a sense of haste or impulse.

The positive side of orange is that it can be used as the “fun” color. According to some, orange helps to “stimulate physical activity, competition, and confidence.” This may be why orange is used heavily by sports teams and children’s products.

This logo should be familiar, in light of recent events:

Click here to see the logo

Here’s another team that proudly uses orange:

Click here to see the logo

In fact, there are a ton of sports teams that use orange: Florida Gators, Clemson Tigers, Boise State Broncos, Syracuse, New York Knicks, New York Mets, San Diego Chargers, etc. uses orange in their “limited time offer” banner. The color suggests urgency, which makes the message more noticeable and actionable:

18 amazon kindle

It makes sense. Orange means active. Orange means fun. Orange means togetherness. Because it’s a loud and warm color. However, orange can be slightly overwhelming. An article on advises, “Orange will be used sparingly to bring your attention to something, but not so much as to overwhelm the actual message of the advert.”

Sometimes, orange is interpreted as “cheap.” (Compare this to black, which is the color of luxury. See below.) Forbes posed the question, “Does orange mean cheap?” in an article on the “Effect of Color on Sales of Commercial Products.” The resounding answer was “yes.” If your product offering is cheap, or if you want it to be seen as such, orange may be a good choice. Vive la Big Lots.

6. Black adds a sense of luxury and value.

The darker the tone, the more lux it is, says our internal color psychology. An article from Lifescript describes black as “elegance, sophistication, power,” which is exactly what luxury designers and high-end e-commerce sites want you to feel. The article goes on to describe black as the color of “timeless, classic” which helps further explain the use of black in high-value products.

In a Business Insider piece on color and branding, the author relates the significance of black:

“Black can also be seen as a luxurious color. ‘Black, when used correctly can communicate glamour, sophistication, exclusivity.’”

Louis Vuitton handbags are not cheap. Absent from the site are colors and designs of whimsy and fun. This is serious value:

19 louis vuitton

Citizen Watch, better than the average Timex, also uses the dark-tone website design:

20 citizen eco drive

Lamborghini does the same thing. Black is the name of the game:

21 lamborghini

If you are selling high-value luxury consumer items on your website, black probably would be a good choice.

7. Use bright primary colors for your call to action.

In strict testing environments, the highest-converting colors for calls to action are bright primary and secondary colors – red, green, orange, yellow.

Darker colors like black, dark gray, brown, or purple have very low conversion rates. Brighter ones have higher conversion rates.

Women’s Health uses a bright mauve-tinted shade for their popup call to action. They’ve got the female-associated purple/pink tint going for them, along with a bright tone.

22 bikini body

GreenGeeks uses a yellow button:

23 start selling today

The biggest retailer in the world uses that famous “add to cart” button. It’s yellow:

24 amazon qty

Some of the best conversion colors are the “ugly” ones — orange and yellow. An article on states, “Psychologically, the ‘anti-aesthetic’ colors may well capture more attention than those on the aesthetically-correct list.” Since the goal of a conversion element is to capture attention, then you may do just fine with that big orange button (BOB). Or yellow.

8. Don’t neglect white.

In most of the color psychology material I read, there is a forgotten feature. Maybe that’s because color theorists can’t agree on whether white is a color or not. I don’t really care whether it is or not. What I do know is that copious use of white space is a powerful design feature. Take, for example, the most popular website in the world. It’s basically all white:

25 google

White is often forgotten, because its primary use is as a background color. Most well-designed websites today use plenty of white space in order to create a sense of freedom, spaciousness, and breathability.


The Internet is a colorful place, and there is a lot that can be accomplished by using color in the right way, at the right time, with the right audience, and for the right purpose.

Naturally, this article leads to questions about making changes in your company’s context. What about if your company has a specific color style guide? What if the logo color dictates a certain tint? What if the lead designer dictates color requirements? How do you deal with that?

You may not be in a position to rewrite your style guide and pick your own website color palette or font colors on the email template. So, how can you use color psychology in these situations? There are a few options:

  • If the colors really suck, campaign for change. In some situations, you may need to make a difference. If you’re a high-heel designer selling to upscale women, but have a crappy orange logo, share your concerns with the decision-makers. People sometimes make stupid color decisions. Kindly show them why and how a killer color scheme can make a conversion difference.
  • Use psychology-appropriate colors that match the existing color scheme. Sure, you need to adapt to the color scheme, but you can still use a splash of strategic color here and there. Let’s say, for sake of example, that you have a blue-themed website. Fine. You can create a popup to harvest email addresses, and use a bright yellow button. The button is psychology-appropriate, and it doesn’t do damage to the company’s color branding.

The more freedom you have in your color scheme, the better. Here are some solid takeaways as you implement color psychology into your website:

  • Test several colors. Despite what some may say, there is no right color for a conversion text or button. Try a green, purple, or yellow button. Explore the advantages of a black background scheme vs. a white background. Find out which works best for your audience and with your product.
  • Don’t just leave color choice up to your designer. I have enormous respect for most web designers. I’ve worked with many of them. However, don’t let your designer dictate what colors you should use on your website. Color is a conversion issue, not just an “Oh, it looks good” issue. Color aesthetics is not everything. Color conversion effects are important! You should be heavily involved in the color selection of your landing pages in order to improve your conversions.
  • Avoid color overload. I’ve just spent over 3,000 words telling you how important and awesome color is. Now, you’re going to go out and color something. But don’t go overboard. Remember my final point. I put it last for a reason. White is a color, and it should be your BFF color, too. Reign in your color enthusiasm with a whole lot of white. Too many colors can create a sense of confusion.

How have your color changes affected your conversions?

About the Author: Jeremy Smith is a conversion consultant and trainer, helping businesses like Dow Chemical, American Express, Panera Bread, and Wendy’s improve conversions and strategically grow their testing culture and digital presence. Jeremy’s experience as the CMO and CEO of technology firms has given him a powerful understanding of human behavior and profit-boosting techniques. Follow him on or Twitter.

  1. The psychology of colour is indeed complex. I have studied it in some depth in a previous career and would just add a couple of qualifiers. 1/ Context and shade are both important. The colours women are not supposed to like are frequently used in various shades for interior decor. 2/ Other studies have shown there to be cultural impacts on preferences 3/ With the exception of yellows for happiness and red to stimulate action or hunger, there appears to be a cycle of colour preference in merchandising as well as in fashion. I concur with all of the advice provided so long as one bears in mind that the specifics are fluid and its important to remain current. Thanks for a very good post on a topic seldom covered !

    • Hi Paul. Thanks so much for the comment. I completely agree. The specifics need to remain fluid and current. There is also a vast disparity between online and offline interaction and how your brain processes different elements. What may cause friction online may be completely irrelevant offline and vice versa. And yes, cultural impacts wreak havoc on conversion optimization processes and obliterate any notion of “best practices”(a word we hate to use in conversion optimization). Thanks for the in-depth comments. I appreciate it.

    • Hello thank for your article, however I notice that you did not mention the color red? Not a whole page of course but a splash?

  2. Definitely agree about bright colours in CTActions. It’s simple but it works.

    • I agree too, however I have seen the complete opposite working while a/b testing. Although, more times than not, the brighter colors seem to have a big impact on CTA’s.

  3. Interesting article. We should use this theory more often – even when we’re just creating documents. I’d like to see this in a WHY Map (

    Thanks for the read.

  4. Rupal Sathavara Apr 02, 2014 at 2:57 am

    Good post and very helpful,Funnily enough, when I started out in advertising/direct marketing many years ago, we were always told that sending a mailing out in a yellow envelope increased results.

    I was also really pleased to discover from your post that our logo and site colours incorporate all three colours women love. Given our target audience is female, our instincts are clearly working fine!

    • Hi Rupal. Thanks for the comments. It’s true, whatever is different and ugly stand out the most, even more in direct mail. It’s just how our brains process these things. I am glad your logo colors are working. Those are definitely important for your user base.

  5. Jeremy,

    Good article but… this applies mostly to US/Europe in particular.

    However, if you’re developing for an international audience, for example, China, look at different color combinations. Red, for example, has different connotations there.

    You agree?


    • Ivan, I completely 10000000% agree. Cultural differences play a vital role in trying to optimize for conversions. It’s something we run into every day and are currently running many tests on these. I look forward to sharing those results. Thanks for the comments.

  6. is funny…

    My question would be…Why so many call to action buttons are Orange???
    The article show us, women and men don’t like Orange. so…..????
    Besides, if Gray is a color that women hate… show us the Facebook Example, there i can see a combination of Blue and Gray ( what about women’s) the study talks about women hate gray???

  7. Andres, thanks for the question. I believe that so many call to action buttons are orange because there are tons of blog posts out there that say use BOB, the big orange button. While this may prove true in some scenarios, it should be no means be considered best practices. It’s something you have to continually test for, no matter what site you are on. I have even seen button color affect conversions based on seasonality. Make sure you are always testing for the best results.

  8. Wow, what a post. Thanks. I think I’ll be reading and re-reading this again.

    What a lot of insight and find most fascinating the revelation that white will help the user breathe. Too often there is much flashing and distraction, even if it may be from a slightly grey background. It is so true to suggest that white will provide some space.

  9. I stopped eating M&Ms when they added blue to the otherwise beautiful, earthy, harvest-colored mix. It just wasn’t as much fun.

  10. Dennis Ruggeri Apr 02, 2014 at 6:28 am

    Look also into the Luscher Color Test.

    One of my senior theses in college compared the personalities of the characters in the Great Gatsby to the color imagery used by Fitzgerald. Using this test I found a striking comparison to the personalities of the characters and the color imagery used to describe them.

    I wish I went into this field after college because it still intrigues me today.

    • Great info Dennis. Thanks for sharing. This field has room for many more like you. There is so much to continue to learn about online web behaviors and color associations with conversions. It’s a never ending story. :)

  11. Excellent, comprehensive and inspiring. One question, what do you think of the Color Marketing Group development of the new trending colors for the upcoming year?

    • Jewel, good question. I think this answer may be much more in-depth than this comment box will allow. They have a ton of good insight backed by researched data. However, as much as I have seen this time and time again, each industry and persona is different and that’s why testing is imperative on any site. I love reading things like this though, thanks for sharing.

  12. Thank you so much for this article, Jeremy. It has come at the right time as I’m just experimenting with colours for a new website. It’s given me great pointers in the opposite direction as I was about to flood it with about five colours!

  13. Good article, but the author is disappointing.

    “Don’t just leave color choice up to your designer. […] Color is a conversion issue, not just an “Oh, it looks good”… ”

    Dude, who the hell have you worked with before? Hehe.

    A GOOD designer will school you in color theory in less than 5 minutes, and that’s a good thing because it’ll teach you an s-load of stuff that you can try/test/use on your projects.

    If you’ve worked with designers that have said to you “Oh, it looks good” then please amend this article explaining that this has been your personal experience. Stop misleading your readers about good and professional designers with generic comments like that one.

    If you happen to know color, great, pair up with a good designer and the results can be highly positive.

    And if you’re going to talk the talk, then try walking the walk and make your personal site responsive (

    Contradictory fact: You have an orange (gradient) “Learn More” (bad SEO text link) button on your home page as your main CTA… According to your article neither men or women like orange.

    Here’s a screenshot for everyone’s reference:

    Yes, that button is orange (gradient) and not yellow as some may think. See here a clear comparison between the exact gradient colors used in that button vs. orange vs. yellow:

    So, what’s your strategy sir?

  14. Allen Matsumoto Apr 02, 2014 at 9:17 am

    I’d modify the advice on your designer a bit. You suggest that since your designer is primarily concerned with aesthetics, you should not blindly follow their color choices.

    I would suggest that if your designer isn’t leading on color psychology, you should fire them and get a real designer, because what you have is a would-be fine artist that doesn’t have the guts to starve in a loft and is just getting your to pay them to play.

    Design is problem solving. The role of aesthetics in design is extremely specific in that context, and “designers” who think that unfettered aesthetic direction is their role really dont belong in any serious enterprise.

    Apologies for the blunt tone; I had the perception that this kind of designer was becoming a thing of the past, but since you work with many and still see this as an issue, perhaps this old refrain still needs to be sung, with feeling.

    • Allen, I love the bluntness. It’s perfect and spot on. I just responded to a tweet with almost the same thing. I have seen tons of designers and many still don’t understand conversions. I vehemently applaud those that do and those are the ones I love to work with. They just get it. It takes time to find the right ones though. Thanks for the honest feedback.

  15. Alberto Medrano Apr 02, 2014 at 10:48 am

    Wow, did not know how much study was put into colors. Makes alot of sense though, I am thinking of redoing my color scheme on my website.

  16. A great article, Jeremy! Choosing a colour palette for a personal brand or business, both online and in print, is quite complex. Hiring the right person makes a big difference. A good graphic designer who offers branding as part of their skills set should know about colour theory and psychology, along with typography. Many web “designers” are experts in coding but not necessarily trained or skilled in use of colour and typography.

    When I put together a colour palette for a client’s personal brand, the first thing I do is ask for their personal preferences as a guide. Then I consider the colours that suit their colouring (skin tone, hair etc) and their personality. Finally I look at the psychological profile of their target audience(s). Putting all this together I select two or three complementary colours that form the core of their brand palette and add a range of light and dark tones of those colours (to use for text, links, backgrounds etc). Complementaries are not chosen arbitrarily. I use colour algorithms to select exact shades from the colour wheel.

    The resulting selection of colours is put together as a palette, with the references for RGB, CMYK, Pantone and HEX to assist web developers and printers. That all sounds very technical, I know, but believe me psychology plays the greater part.

    The most important element of strong branding is consistency. Virgin spends a small fortune to ensure that the Virgin red is exactly the right shade, whether it’s used on a printed leaflet or the side of a plane.

    If you’re wondering why I take my client’s skin tone into account, it’s because I recommend they wear their brand colour(s) to make an impact …a shirt, tie, scarf or other item. It’s a nice touch when getting head shots taken for their website. They must LOVE the colours I choose, and so must their audience. It’s a fine balance!

    • Sue, thanks for the comments. They were very interesting to read and I haven’t seen that approach often when dealing with design and branding. Brand managers keep me in a box, which is good. I tend to push the lines because my focus is solely on moving the revenue needles with conversions. That said, I loved reading your comments and how you approach things. We can never stop learning from one another.

      • Thanks for your reply Jeremy. As you might have figured, I’m a freelancer used to working with solopreneurs and small business owners. We’re all cash-strapped so my perspective is offering the best service possible within a limited budget.

        A visual identity comprising carefully chosen logotype and colour palette is one of the most valuable design assets a small business owner can invest in because it will inform every decision they make about their brand communications, from business cards, to website, to the colour they paint their shop or office.

  17. Winnie Anderson Apr 03, 2014 at 4:45 am

    A fascinating discussion and primer on the psychology of color and its impact on branding. Thanks for sharing it and thanks to the other professionals who’ve chimed in to expand the discussion.

    Vetting a designer — or any other vendor / professional — is a critical part of building a brand as well. I can’t tell you how many friends, colleagues, and clients, have come to me — some actually in tears — because they’ve spent money on branding and brand elements that don’t communicate who they are and that are a massive waste of money.

    Don’t just take a recommendation from a colleague. Just as your friend’s hair stylist, doctor, or other professional may be good for them and not you, the same is true for a designer.

    • Winnie, you raise a great question. Anyone can call themselves a designer, even if their skill is actually coding and technical building. The lines have become blurred. A qualified designer – in any discipline – will have learnt about colour, composition and technique. But that’s only part of the story. Branding involves marketing, coaching, psychometrics and a touch of magic dust – that indefinable ingredient that great logo designers and tagline writers possess. Experience counts for a great deal; seasoned designers learn a great deal from each project they work on. Here are a few pointers to finding the right fit:

      Do your research – find designs you love and copy them to an online scrapbook or moodboard. Be sure to note contact details for the design originators. The scrapbook will also serve as a valuable part of your brief for whoever you hire to work with you.

      Ask others for recommendations but remember that one person’s perfect designer may not be yours.

      View a designer’s website, portfolio or LinkedIn profile to check their credentials and to see if you like their style. Create a shortlist and then contact each one and ask them to give you a rough ballpark for a simple vector logo with a colour palette and a three page responsive website. This will give you a rough comparison of pricing for a basic service. If they don’t know what a vector, a colour palette or responsive website is, cross them off your list straight away.

      Once you have two or three candidates, put together a good design brief, listing as much information as you can about your brand attributes, target audience, competitors, goals and preferences (with examples). Be clear about what you want your brand to communicate and what the project scope actually entails.

      Ask questions about the way that they work and pay attention to the questions that they ask you. They should then provide a quote and you can choose the best person for the job (not necessarily the cheapest one!).

      Design, as Allen rightly says above, is problem-solving. Any designer who doesn’t dig down to define the problem is unlikely to find a successful answer!

  18. Colors can play a huge role when it comes to website interaction and conversion rates. You have to really put yourself in the shoes of your audience and find out what colors would resonate best with their collective personality.

    • Agreed, but I would also add that you have to test test and never stop testing. What might win today, tomorrow could be different. Seasonality plays a huge role in colors and conversion as well. Good thoughts here. Thanks for commenting.

  19. Gary Familathe Apr 06, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    Madison Avenue used color before computers guys…they did well.

  20. Great article Jeremy. I’ve passed it along to several colleagues and friends in digital marketing. It will definitely be used in some upcoming conversion tests in various settings.

  21. Really enjoyed this! But I’m wondering about red? I’ve heard it’s a “power” color…but what else? Not a big player when it comes to website interaction and conversion rates?

    • Hi Anne …Red is a wonderful colour for excitement …it’s shown to raise blood pressure, speed respiration and heart rate. It’s used in restaurant interiors to stimulate appetites and conversation. It’s sassy, sexy, daring.

      Red needs to be used with caution because it’s also related to anger and irritation …the way it stimulates our senses can be both positive and negative, depending on the context.

      Red has accessibility issues. For those with restricted colour vision, red is the most common colour to be affected. For them it looks like grey, so if red links and buttons etc are too similar in tone to general text, they won’t show up. For that reason I recommend avoiding red as a link colour altogether.

  22. The pros and cons of color in web design is quite interesting. I found it very useful. Thank you.

  23. I love this article. The tips given in the article are very valuable to make exceptional color combinations. This article analyzed each and every part clearly and crisply. Great Job Buddy…

  24. Choosing right color for a website is more than an aesthetics. It became a whole science on which depends the conversion rate of a website. Thank you for sharing this with us.

  25. Great article. Nothing else to say but, lets get to work!

    I’ll start making changes now.

    One last question: What colours should I use in my landing page if the products we offer are custom home decor intended mostly for new borns and kids, but also for couples… But the ones that make the buy desicion are the mothers or women?


  26. FYI tried to share your post on G+, but your sharing app will not display the full share box, which prevented me from changing who I was sharing with. So I couldn’t share. Just FYI.

  27. Though there is some worth in this article, there’s a couple of issues, which makes me wonder how relevant some of these points are.

    First of all, blue being the colour of trust, loyalty etc I would have to strongly disagree, in particular with the comparison for Facebook. Whilst blue may have been a colour that stands for all this, Facebook have massively tarnished their reputation with its users. Trust is the last thing that comes to mind when thinking of Facebook (think selling of user-information behind the scenes, anything but trustworthy and transparent.) I think our association with blue in terms of digital media is turning towards the negative.

    Another big issue i have is the studies saying that blue, purple and green are women’s favourite colours….yet, how many women do you see with blue and green lipstick on? Probably not that many.

  28. Awesome article! Definitely gonna follow some of the given advices when I customize my forum :-)


  29. I am making new website for my company, your article is just great and definitely going to help in making my website.

  30. well, the only reason why facebook is blue is because mark zuckerberg is colorblind and so the blue color is the color he can see the best.

  31. I’ve recently bulit color conversion website that converts hex, rgb, cmyk, hsl, hsv/hsb using fast and reliable algorithms. You would face no corruption or malfunction in your outputs. It is free and fun to use :)

  32. Color are so important but designers sacrifice them for the sake of functionality and end up losing both. Designers and developers should sit down and brainstorm the color scheme from the very beginning.

  33. Vladymir Rogov Dec 15, 2015 at 3:22 pm

    “Don’t just leave color choice up to your designer.” Very interesting statement. Isn’t color supposed to be a primary knowledge skill of a designer. Would you want to confer with the book keeper? Or, a designer of gear wheels and sprockets…

    Color psychology is a unique knowledge of the broader field of artists and designers–call it behavioral psychology or whatever you want.

  34. Hi, Jeremy!
    Great article about color psychology! I’ve learned a lot about the use of color in conversions, engagements, and site designs. I will try out the things that you’ve mentioned here. Thanks a lot!

  35. Jeremy, this article had no flows, no precise structure, its a shit, actually. I am disappointed…spent a lot of time translating it…and ahh it sucks. never ever read anything from you again

  36. Thanks Jeremy, awesome read. I found it helpful, although a bit long. Still, can’t wait to test it.

  37. It’s scary to think how powerful this tactic has been for Micky D’s, which might not have been the same ridiculously big chain it is today without using red and yellow so effectively. McDonald’s sure wouldn’t be so popular trying to market all that unhealthy food using the color green!

  38. Great article. It’s interesting to note, though, that while orange may supposedly be one of the least liked colors by either sex, Home Depot has done quite well making it their primary hue.

  39. It’s all about the contrast – if you grab their interest with a strongly contrasting but complementary color for key elements like Call-to-action buttons you’re golden. :)

  40. Thanks to share your knowledge.

    It’s been very useful to recolor my website from a “scary” gray to a white color background. I’ve also defined the Triadiac Color for my logo and overall website giving a professional look and brand which people can remember.

    I’m not a professional designer like you, but in 20 minutes I’ve re-branded my website. I wrote down the process step by step so everyone can benefit from it.

    Keep up the good job, I will stick around.

  41. What color can I use to design my website is a health and beauty website, my target audience is both male and female. Thanks

  42. Great article about color psychology! I’ve learned a lot about the use of color in conversions, engagements, and site designs.

  43. Actually the reason Facebook uses blue isn’t because of what it represents, but because Mark Zuckerberg is red-green colorblind. He’s stated that blue is one color he can see without a problem.

  44. How do we know you’re not just lying and using blue to make us trust you?

    • Good point, Kyle.

      When we published this (years ago) blue was not one of our brand’s colors. We have since updated our brand where blue is the primary color, and I can assure you it is not in an effort to increase conversions.

  45. Your denver broncos link is compromised – tries to install a search bar. You should disable or remove it.

  46. Thanks, Jeremy it was very helpful, I will start to share it with my team to use it in our new projects.

  47. Sophie Chamberlain Jan 22, 2018 at 1:46 am

    This is great! Thanks so much! I really enjoyed this read. Color is so incredible. It’s power is almost scary because it is so unexpected. I am inspired to change colors on my own website so that it is more professional and inviting. It’s good to know that certain colors send a certain message. I feel that the colors I have on my website now do not represent my company properly. Thanks so much for the read, I think you helped me out of my rut. It’s also crazy to think that even McDonald’s uses color to have almost a power over us. Insane.

  48. Good one on colors… it is one of the important part on the design this article helps a lot to choose a color code. And for the one who are not familiar with color codes this article is the right one. Each color has its uniqueness. Finally, just follow the steps from earlier to set it as your default color scheme.

  49. Wow who knew color had such an impact on emotions and mood. Especially when it comes to what we buy. I will be doing an analysis of this for my own brand.


Please use your real name and a corresponding social media profile when commenting. Otherwise, your comment may be deleted.

← Previous ArticleNext Article →