Colour Psychology in Website Design

Usually, there is a tendency for people to associate particular colours with different emotions. Therefore, the colours used on your website could have a psychological effect on people visiting your site. Through using specific colours which are geared towards the emotion you want to invoke, it has been proven that it can cause an increase in product sales.

Below are some colours together with the emotions and symbols they inspire:

1) WHITE- peace, purity, innocence, chastity, infertility, hygiene, excellence. Generally, white evokes a rather breezy and refreshing feeling.

2) BLACK- grief, night, space, authority, strength, reliability, cautiousness, power, constancy, classy, stylishness, wisdom, compliance, demons, witches. Black is usually quite controversial. It can symbolize either good or evil.

3) RED- love, passion, heat, blood, fire, warmth, anger, stimulation, power, action. Red can be used to draw the attention. It is best used as an accent colour rather than a background colour.

4) PINK- romantic, tenderness, femininity, affection, soft hearted, softness, sensuality, tranquility. Pink tends to usually reduce aggression.

5) BLUE- water, sky, ocean, ice, coldness, freedom, peaceful, vapour, calmness, temperature, shade, travel, truth, insight, solitude, loyalty, intelligence, devotion, trust, masculinity. Be careful however. Different tones of blue can vehicle opposite meanings. Light blue tends to be more peaceful whereas dark blue is more depressing.

6) PURPLE- luxury, superiority, monarchs, decorum, prosperity, feminine, infatuation, sensitivity, romance, coolness, shadows, mysterious, mystic, mist.

7) GREEN- nature, money, envy, greed, calm, existence, childhood, regeneration, richness, rebirth, hope, vitality, freedom, culpability. Here also, different shades of green can convey different meanings. Dark green is associated with cool, it is also seen as masculine, conservative, and a colour of wealth. Emerald green symbolizes immortality, olive green symbolizes peace. Generally, green is an easy colour for the eyes.

8) YELLOW- vividness, light, warmth, purity, sympathy, light-heartedness, inventiveness. Note that lemon yellow is a tiring colour for the eyes. There is a tendency for yellow to increase bad temper so it shouldn’t be used as a main colour, but rather as an accent. Also, the colour yellow tends to enhance concentration.

9) ORANGE- warmth, autumn, flames, youthfulness, satisfaction, wholesomeness, fruitfulness, power, strong, generous, fortitude, ambition. Orange is the colour which is the most connected with appetite so it could be a good choice for a website selling food products. Orange can also make a product seem more appropriate for everyone and also more affordable.

10) BROWN- wood, ground, strength, soothing, solid, reliable, maturity, humility, conservative, plausible. Light brown conveys an idea of genuineness.

11) GREY- exclusiveness. Grey also enhances a person’s psychological response to other colours.

More generally, red, orange, and yellow are colours which tend to enhance excitement, whereas purple, blue and green for example are rather more soothing colours.

Make use of the colour which symbolizes the emotion you want to put forward as the main colour on your website. You can also add 1 to 2 other colours in order to reinforce this emotion. The colours you use for the background, header, graphics, text, highlighting, headlines, etc. all contribute to the influence your website will have on all your visitors.


J.M. Stevens is contributing editor at This article may be reproduced provided that its complete content, links and author byline are kept intact and unchanged. No additional links permitted. Hyperlinks and/or URLs must remain both human clickable and search engine spiderable.

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