Colors signify a lot of meaning in every aspect of our lives and quite often act as symbol describing much more than being said. Similarly colors do play a major role while designing a website for they can effectively create a high visual appeal and convey the intended meaning. It is often seen that a site despite having excellent functional features still is unable to attract and retain the visitors because of improper use of color element in the design. This adds on to the task of web designers to select the right set of colors in conjunction with other elements (Text, images, graphics, etc) of a web a page. Various factors have to be considered before selecting colors for a site and for this an understanding of the colors and their implications is necessary. Only then it can be assured that the colors chosen are appropriate and enhance the value of a site.
Understanding the meaning of colors for web design
Red is a powerful color that denotes strong emotions of passion, excitement, love, energy. It has the potential to catch attention fast and can make the user take quick decision. In a website, red can be used for actions buttons such as ‘Click Here’ or ‘Buy Now’.
It is the most used color as content is usually written in black color. It stands for sophistication, formality and elegance and can be effectively used for a website.
Blue with its royal appeal and calm effect proves to be good color for websites. If used in combination with other colors like red and yellow, it can create the desired effect. It is a preferred color for corporate websites.
Green color signifies nature, growth, abundance and harmony. It is most suitable for promoting natural or organic products on a site. For health based sites, green color is an apt choice.
The color attaches the feeling of maturity, seriousness, sobriety, professionalism and quality. It can be advantageously used to depict these things based upon the nature of a site.
Though the color portrays energy, brightness, caution, happiness and is an attention catcher etc but it needs to be carefully used in a website as the overuse of it can produce negative results. If excessively used, it may not appear too pleasing to the visitors. As colors with their effectiveness can elicit the desired reaction from the visitors, it is important to make the right selection by considering the important factors.
Factors to consider for selecting the right colors for a website
It is of utmost importance to know the users for whom the site is actually meant for. Having knowledge about the aspirations and needs of the target audience, it becomes easy to decide as to which color will be acceptable to them. It is beneficial to use those colors to which they can easily connect to.
Culture has lot to do with the meaning of a color. While in one geographic location, a color may have positive attributes whereas in other it has negative connotation. To say for example, the color white stands for purity in U.S whereas in other countries such as Japan and India, it signifies death or mourning. This affects the choice of color as a website catering to different cultures needs to take extra care and choose colors appropriately.
A fine balance must be made between the background and the text color to enhance the readability. The use of colors should be such that it facilitates reading without straining the readers’ eyes.
In addition to readability, Legibility too is an important consideration. Certain areas which need attention must be clearly visible and easily recognizable by the users. For example, a separate color must be chosen for links to make appear distinct from the content and even if they are clicked on they should not merge with rest of the content.
As a site is meant for all, it is important to take care of color blind users and such color combinations should be used that makes it easy for them to read the content. Color Combination is an important aspect of web designing. A website with a right combination of colors can create positive impact on the visitors. Colors really matter in web designing.
Pratima Paliwal, associated with Seo-Semantic-Xhtml, a specialized division of ipraxa- a full service web agency, offering services like PSD to HTML, Ipad testing and Integration with third party applications like PSD to WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Magento and much more. You can connect with us at Facebook.