The Role of Color in Website Design

The selection of color in website design may be more important than you think. Colors impact consumers, even when they don’t realize it. They can convey feelings and emotions. They can even create higher sales or reduce them if used incorrectly. Some industry sources claim that 75% of snap judgments that consumers make about companies or products are based on color. So, when designing a website, there should be careful thought put into the selections.

Overall Palette

It is rare to have a website using just one or two colors throughout the entire site. Having variety helps, but there should be a coherent theme. There will be your main colors and then ones that are complimentary to them. If you’re not sure what colors could be complimentary to each other, Canva has a free tool that helps you pick the right one.

Pink may effectively market a romance novel, but it probably won’t help the sale of chainsaws. If picking the right colors is critical, the question becomes ‘what do different colors convey’.


Blues are popular with financial institutions and government agencies. Blue conveys stability, calmness and trust. Light blues are popular with tech companies or creative firms. Dark blues are popular with healthcare companies and financial institutions as it conveys trust and intelligence.


Luxury and sophistication are often associated with the color purple. Dark shades can convey mystery and luxury, while lighter shades can communicate sophistication and class.


Red can cover a wide range or things. It can communicate anger and aggressiveness or love and passion. It can also create a sense of urgency. Dark reds can be popular with companies that market high-end services, as well as educational institutions. Bright red is popular with entertainment and food companies.

Although red can be very effective, it can also become overwhelming to the website visitor. Your website designer understands the role of color in website design and should be a good judge of how much is too much. Trust their expertise.


When properly used, black can convey power and authority. It is often associated with luxury, sophistication and wealth. It can also be used for contrasting products or services.


On the opposite side, white can be very effective. Depending on how it is used, white can convey creative, friendly, inviting or classy feelings. White is also useful if you need other bright colors to “pop”.  If the amount of pure white feels like too much, your web designer may try other shades like ivory.


If you want to create feelings of excitement, cheer, optimism or happiness, then yellow may do the trick. This color is popular with companies that focus on children’s products and creative companies. It is also a favorite for travel agencies.


Orange is often overlooked but can be a very effective tool. It can show the good cheer of yellow but in a more muted way. Orange can also communicate urgency as red does but in a more subtle manner. This makes is popular for call-to-action buttons. The color is often associated with being confident and durable.


While we may think of money when we see green, we also think of the environment, making this color popular for organic products, wellness-related businesses and eco-friendly companies. Because it is at the center of the color spectrum, it subtly communicates a sense of balance to your customers.

Audience Considerations

A word of caution may be appropriate here. Colors may mean different things outside of the US and could convey very different messages. White may represent purity in one market while, in another, it could represent death. So, if your market is in foreign countries, you may want to do more research on those particular countries and their customs. Similarly, different genders may view some of the colors in a different light.

Call To Action

There comes a time when you want the visitors to do something, whether it’s to make an immediate purchase, schedule an appointment, or request more information. This is the call to action (CTA). Guiding the customer to the CTA is important and this is an area with the role of color in website design becomes critical.

The size, shape and location of the CTA button will also make a difference. Your web designer will help ensure that your CTA is very visible and located in optimal spots.

If you are considering a new website or restyling an existing one, we would love to talk to you about it. Our branding consultants will work with your business to define your brand, sharpen its focus and build your visibility. Contact us for a free consultation. We can’t wait to work with you!

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