The Power of Color in Web Site Design

by Joanne Glasspoole

Do you find it hard to choose color schemes for your Web designs? It is a question I get asked often. An effective color scheme can make or break your Web site. If it doesn’t convey the personality you are trying to achieve, you may end up alienating the people you are trying so hard to get to notice you.

In my quest to design successful, attractive Web sites, I spend a lot of time picking colors. Making sure colors coordinate well with each other is not an easy task. But, with the right tools and a good sense of what looks right, you can achieve the look and feel you desire.

Color has the power to make us feel hungry, cool, warm, excited, sexy, joyful, sad. Can you imagine the world without color?

Following is a brief summary of some of the emotions/feelings associated with color:

  1. RED: warmth, love, anger, danger, boldness, excitement
  2. ORANGE: cheerfulness, low cost, affordability
  3. YELLOW: attention-grabbing, comfort, liveliness, cowardliness
  4. GREEN: durability, reliability, environmental, luxurious, optimism, well-being
  5. BLUE: professionalism, loyalty, reliability, honor, melancholia, boredom
  6. PURPLE: power, royalty, elegance, artificial
  7. GRAY: conservatism, traditionalism, intelligence, serious, dull, uninteresting
  8. BROWN: relaxing, confident, casual, reassuring, earthy
  9. BLACK: Elegance, sophistication, formality, strength, illegality, depression, morbidity
  10. WHITE: Cleanliness, purity, newness, virginity, peace, innocence, simplicity, sterility

The above associations are not universal. Depending on the country, different colors can mean different things. If you are designing a Web site for an international audience, it is crucial that you pay particular attention to choosing your color schemes. Choosing the wrong colors may prove detrimental to the success of your Web site.

For more information about color, visit the following Web sites:

The Color Schemer
Clear Ink’s Palette Man

Copyright © 2001 by Joanne Glasspoole. Joanne is the editor/publisher of CYBER QUEST. Each issue is jam-packed with original reports, news briefs, cool Webmaster tools, and more. To subscribe, send e-mail to [email protected] with "subscribe cyberquest" in the body of your message.

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