CitrusKiwi's Web Design, Internet & Marketing blog

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Color for websites

Feelings & Emotions

Color for website design and for branding definitely matters.  Color is a non-verbal (or non-written) communication.  Colors convey feelings and emotions, often without the viewer being aware of it.  These feelings can be inbuilt (for example, red has been shown to raise blood pressure), cultural (for example in the western world we associate white with weddings) or trendy (many people associate avocado with the 60's & 70's).

When thinking about a color for a website, care must be taken to understand who the intended audience is.  Male?  Female?  Old?  Young?  Western? Asian?  Global?  Yes, white is associated with weddings, but that's very much a western idea.  In the Asian continent, white is associated with death and funerals.  An Asian wedding site in white is not going to go down too well!

Color for your company's website

Obviously the colors in use in your company are going to dictate to some degree the color for your website.  You may think that's going to be a problem if your logo is mainly turquoise (one of a man's least favorite colors) and you're trying to pitch to men.  But that's not the case.  Color matches can be adjacent, complementary or contrasting, and utilising these give huge scope.  These are issues we consider when choosing color for your website.

Of course, you can also look at a rebranding of your company to a newer, up-to-date logo with colors more in keeping with your target audience.

First impressions matter

People size us up within 90 seconds, and their first impression of us is based predominantly upon the colors we are wearing. In fact, color alone accounts for 62 - 90% of that vital first impression.

The same happens with the color on a website.  The wrong colors can send a surfer heading for the back button as quick as they arrived.  This is why it is crucial that you identify your target audience to ensure the color combinations suit the majority of your potential visitors.


Beige and ivory : unification. Ivory symbolizes quiet and pleasantness. Beige symbolizes calm and simplicity.

Black : power, sophistication, formality, elegance, wealth, mystery, fear, evil, unhappiness, depth, style, evil, sadness, remorse, anger, anonymity, underground, good technical color, mourning, death (Western cultures).

Blue : peace, tranquility, cold, calm, stability, harmony, unity, trust, truth, confidence, conservatism, security, cleanliness, order, loyalty, sky, water, technology, depression, appetite suppressant.

Brown : earth, stability, hearth, home, outdoors, reliability, comfort, endurance, simplicity, and comfort.

Gold : faith, healing, wealth, blessing. In the Middle East, the power of the king, supreme power or authority, and wealth.

Gray : (Often spelt "Grey") security, reliability, intelligence, staid, modesty, dignity, maturity, solid, conservative, practical, old age, sadness, boring. Silver symbolizes calm.

Green : nature, environment, healthy, good luck, renewal, youth, spring, generosity, fertility, jealousy, inexperience, envy, misfortune, vigor.

Lavender : femininity, grace and elegance.Orange : energy, balance, enthusiasm, warmth, vibrant, expansive, flamboyant, demanding of attention.

Pink : love, romance, and excitement.

Purple : royalty, nobility, spirituality, ceremony, mysterious, transformation, wisdom, enlightenment, cruelty, arrogance, mourning.

Red : excitement, energy, passion, love, desire, speed, strength, power, heat, aggression, danger, fire, blood, war, violence, all things intense and passionate.

Turquoise : calm. Teal symbolizes sophistication. Aquamarine symbolizes water. Lighter turquoise has a feminine appeal.

White : reverence, purity, birth, simplicity, cleanliness, peace, humility, precision, innocence, youth, winter, snow, good, sterility, marriage (Western cultures), death (Eastern cultures), cold, clinical.

Yellow : joy, happiness, betrayal, optimism, idealism, imagination, hope, sunshine, summer, gold, philosophy, dishonesty, cowardice, jealousy, covetousness, deceit, illness, hazard.

Your business's website success will, initially, hang on the color used for your website.

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