This Is Why Colors Could Be Harming Your Website


How Colors Affect Our Choices

Colour will always play a major part of our lives and the choices you make for the best website color schemes will have an enormous impact on your Online Success.

It is probably one of the first things that our brains begin to identify with as we are growing and developing.

There is a concept that color only matters when we are choosing clothes or decorating our houses, but whether we are looking for a new car, choosing that new smartphone, or even viewing a website, color plays a major part in our decision.

Have you ever paid much attention to the Colours you use on your website, or do you just go with what you think looks pleasing to the eye?

Believe it or not, the color theme of your website can have a great impact on your visitor experience and determine whether a viewer decides “should I stay or should I go”.

The first thing that a viewer will notice about your website is the layout and color scheme, that is before they get to your content or the product you are trying to promote. 

The color of your website can have a distinct effect on your sales just by choosing the best website color schemes to use.

Before deciding the color combination you should be using, let’s have a look at how colors are made up.

There are 3 Primary Colors. These are colors that cannot be made up by mixing other colours together. They are  Red, Blue and Yellow. Every other colour is made up from just these 3.primary colours



Then we have secondary colours. These are colors that can be made up by mixing 2 primary colours together. These are  Orange from Red and Yellow,  Purple from Red and Blue and Green from Blue and Yellowsecondary colours




Color psychology

Colors fall into three basic categories, so using a color from each group could give your site a more balanced feel to it.

Cool colors:

Cool colors have a calming effect. But using only cool colors can have an impersonal and cold effect on your site, there again if used with a combination of warm or neutral colors, it then alters the feel to comforting.

Here are the Cool Colors.

  • Blue
  • Turquoise
  • Green
  • Grey
  • Silver
  • White

Warm colors:

Warm colors get the juices flowing and get people excited about what they’re seeing. Warm colors give a range of emotions from optimism to violence. But beware, using too much can be rather overwhelming to viewers.

These are the Warm Colors.

  • Red
  • Yellow
  • Orange
  • Brown
  • Gold
  • Pink
  • Black

Neutral Colors:

Neutral colors are usually used as a background color and font colors.

  • Black
  • White
  • Brown
  • Ivory
  • Beige
  • Grey

Emotions in Color

It is important to know that every color has an emotional trait and by using different colors can emit different emotions to a reader.

They can be associated with either a positive or negative emotion.

For instance:

Red is a Warm Color and can be portrayed as Positive by being Powerful, Strong, Passionate, whereas it can also show a negative side in Anger, Danger and Forcefulness and Violence.

Green is Cool and is associated with Nature and a clean environment, but can also show Envy, Jealousy and Guilt.

Blue another Cool Color that shows Coolness, Tranquillity, Patience, Comfort and Loyalty but then can be Cold, Fearful and Depressive.

Orange is a Warm color, portraying Brightness and a Cheerful emotion, whereas it will also show Ignorance.

Yellow  another Warm color showing Brightness, Warmth and Joy, but can show Caution and Warning

White  A cool Color   but Pure and Virginal, emits space and freedom, but it is also Cold or Distant

Black Being a Neutral Color is Dramatic, Sophisticated and Stylish, but also speaks  Serious, Evil and Death

Pink is a warm color signifying Romance, Love, and Friendship. It shows feminine qualities and passiveness, but also immaturity, and girly.

Brown another Warm Color that suggests stability and denotes masculine qualities. But there again Humourless, Heavy and Unsophisticated

Purple another Warm Color that is associated with Royalty. It symbolises Power, Nobility, Luxury, and Ambition. On the downside, it can also portray gloominess and sadness as in funerals.

Genre Colors.

Your biggest goal in marketing is to get a reaction from your audience.

By choosing the best website color schemes you can create an emotional response that will have the potential to increase sales.

Generally using a primary color and then two secondary colours will have the desired effect, based on the target audience you want to attract.

Colors get a different response from Adults as opposed to Children 

If your primary audience is aimed at the female Genre, then you may want to use Blues Purples and Greens, they are not so keen on Grey, Orange, and Brown.

If your primary audience is the Male Genre then tend to go for Blues Greens and Black. The Male audience isn’t so keen on Purple, Orange and Brown.

How about children? What do you think the favourite color that children prefer? Let me give you a clue Macdonalds Logo



In a survey carried out back in 2001 at the University of Geneva, it was recognised that children preferred the color Red and by incorporating the original Logo color of Yellow, a true example of how colour works to grab the attention by this famous fast food outlet.

Never use more than two or three colors at best.

Websites tend to look very busy with to much color. You should be looking to keep it as simple as possible and if that means using just one color then so be it.

The design of your website and your color choice is vital to attracting visitors.

So why not try different color schemes and different shades before you make your final decision.

You could also do an A/B testing on your site.

Changing the color scheme shouldn’t be that difficult if your theme allows, so if you feel that one combination isn’t working then change it and see if another color theme works.

Text Colors

Reading the text on a computer screen and reading the written word is very different.

It is more difficult to read a sentence on the computer monitor than it is if the same sentence were written on paper. 

So choosing the color of the text on a given background should be carefully assessed.

Black text on a white background is great, probably the easiest combination to read, but trying to navigate a sentence written in yellow for example on say a green background becomes a lot more difficult. 

Make it easy on your viewer’s eyes, we aren’t all blessed with 20-20 vision and the easier your blog is to read the longer your reader will stay.

Last Word

Color is a powerful tool in your web design.

It is often the first thing a site visitor notices about your site and can be the difference between staying or going.

The same two sites with a different color scheme can produce a substantial difference in the experience a visitor feels.

So consider your colors and as previously mentioned, don’t settle for the first choice.

If that isn’t working change the look.

You may be surprised at the end results.


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6 thoughts on “This Is Why Colors Could Be Harming Your Website”

  1. When I first started out in blogging, I had this notion that every page and post needed to be all flashy and colourful. But then, one day I was talking to a friend of mine on the train who is a programmer, and she told me to keep it very simple and with a white background. I keep reading more and more about how you shouldn’t make your site to flashy. I’m really happy that I read this article about which colours tailors to which market! That is really useful information and I will make using that suggestion while building out my site.
    Thanks so much for sharing this!! 🙂

  2. Hi Gdodd,
    You make some interesting points. I have visited some sites where the color scheme was all over the place. My brain felt like it was on overload. I much prefer the black text on a white background–perhaps because that’s what my eyes have been trained to see. 99% of what we read today is black text on white or very light backgrounds.
    Thanks for sharing!

    • Hi Kathy
      thanks for your interest and comment.
      Yes colour psychology is quite an underestimated SEO tactic that can really enhance the UX of the viewer. Obviously using a dark text on a much lighter background is so much easier for the reader to comprehend, plus certain clours don’t go down to well with different genres.

      Thanks again,glad you found the article interesting.

  3. I agree colors can make your site look great or…not so much depending on your choices. this is why I sometimes get aggravated with themes that limit color choices.
    thanks for sharing this 🙂

    • Hi Kevin,
      thanks very much for your comment. Although the choice of colours may give your site an aesthetic look as you mention, the use of colours also has a psychological bearing on your audience.


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