The Basics of Color Psychology
Understanding the basics of color psychology can benefit your brand in many ways. Whether you’re looking to build your brand, improve user experience or boost conversion rates, the role of color is paramount as you make your branding and design decisions! As a matter of fact, studies show that 62-90% of human feelings towards people and products are determined solely by color. In addition, up to 90% of “snap judgments” made about products may also be based alone on color, depending on the product of course.
So does this mean that each and every color can be directly associated with certain emotions? While studies may indicate that this is true for a few colors, such as commonly correlating orange with energy or blue with trust, there is no black-and-white answer. Our opinions and feelings towards colors can be affected by experience, personal preference, upbringing, culture, or they may be entirely situational. Color is ubiquitous, so it’s important to understand how color may be affecting your target market’s perception of your brand’s intended message.
The colors you choose for your brand or marketing materials should be a reflection of how you want the brand depicted. Think personality, then color! The colors you choose should also make sense for your industry. For example, pink would likely be a poor color choice for a website offering jet ski rentals but far more ideal for a makeup company. Color appropriateness can make or break a website for some users, so ensuring that your color scheme aligns with both your brand and your target audience is crucial.
As for choosing your colors, there are a few basic tips and tricks to keep in mind. First off, gender can play a role in personal preference. If your company’s target market is primarily male or female, this may be something to especially consider. Men tend to prefer shades, which is when black is added to a color to reduce the lightness. In contrast, women tend to prefer tints, which is when white is added to a color to increase lightness.
Separately, the larger majority of consumers frequently prefer color patterns with similar hues (tints or shades) but tend to favor palettes with a highly contrasting accent color. Your color scheme should consist of analogous, or similar, base colors contrasted with complementary accent colors. A very useful tool for establishing the right color palette and figuring out your complementary colors is Paletton. Alternatively, you may choose to use triadic colors, which is often readily accepted and sometimes even preferred.
It’s as important to make sure you’re choosing the right colors as it is to ensure you’re not going overboard on colors. White space is a key element on many web pages as it signifies a clean and well-organized website. On the other hand, too many colors can leave users feeling scattered or overwhelmed. As a result, users may develop a lack of trust, thus choosing to leave the site rather than continue exploring. The key is to minimize bounces and boost those conversions; by understanding color psychology, this should be no problem!
Rather than users leaving your website, they should be staying, getting to know your brand, and hopefully, asking to learn more or acknowledging your calls-to-action (CTA)! Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is an increasingly common term referring to the percentage of visitors to your website that are converted to customers via any desired action through your website’s CTA’s. Conversion is quite literally the opposite from users bouncing! So how do you increase your conversion rate? Sometimes, it’s as simple as changing the color of your website’s CTA’s.
Many companies have seen conversion improvements by up to 36% just by changing the colors of their conversion elements. According to the psychological principle, the Isolation Effect, people remember things best when they stick out from their surroundings. Given this information, appropriate colors for CTA’s may include yellow, orange, red, or anything that will draw users’ attention. The only way to know what colors work best for you and your brand is to try them out and track or measure conversions!
Don’t overlook such an easy change; the few minutes it takes to change your CTA colors will be well worth the improved conversion rate that is surely soon to follow. Applying color psychology to your marketing practices may seem daunting, but that’s why us experts are here to help. If you’re still having trouble finding the right look for your brand or maybe figuring out what your customers think, give us a call, and we can put you on the right track!