Colour theory is a critical aspect of web design, as it can significantly impact a website’s overall aesthetic and user experience. Understanding and utilising colour theory can help designers and business owners create visually appealing and practical designs.
Learn Your Colours
The colour wheel is your new best friend for good website design.
The first step in understanding colour theory is to familiarise yourself with the colour wheel. The colour wheel is a visual representation of primary, secondary, and tertiary colours. The primary colours (red, blue, and yellow) are the building blocks of all other colours. They cannot be created by mixing different colours, and if you zoom in close enough on an LCD screen, you will see tiny RGB LEDs. The secondary colours (green, orange, and purple) are combined by mixing two primary colours. Finally, tertiary colours are created by combining primary and secondary colours. Now that we’ve finished the kindergarten lesson, we can discuss why it’s vital for good website design.
Opposites do attract.
A central concept in colour theory is the use of complementary colours. Complementary colours are opposite each other on the colour wheel, such as red and green or blue and orange. When used together, these colours create a strong contrast and can be used to draw attention to specific areas of the website, engaging customers. However, using these colours sparingly and with good balance is essential, as they can be overwhelming a website’s design and layout if used in excess.
Sometimes its the colour next door that makes a website pop.
Another critical concept in colour theory is the use of analogous colours. Analogous colours are next to each other on the colour wheel, such as red, orange, and yellow. These colours create a harmonious and soothing effect on the viewer. These colours can be used to create a cohesive and consistent design which is vital to any business’s brand appeal. A web designer’s job is to bring the client’s website to life in all its colourful glory. Ensuring the company’s brand identity is followed is vital when building a website for your client or your own business.
Colour for Accessibility
Easier to read can translate into more engagement and e-commerce sales.
Another factor that is often overlooked is considering the use of colour for accessibility. Choosing colours with high contrast is essential, as this makes text and other elements easier to read for users with visual impairments. However, it’s also important to consider how colours are used in relation to other elements on the page, such as background and text colour, and to avoid using colours that are too similar, as this can make it difficult for users to distinguish between different elements. Dark mode or designing with dark colours is a popular way to achieve a high-contrast website design that is easier on the client’s eyes and device battery life.
Psychological Effects of Colours
Sometimes colour can evoke customers to buy!
The last thing to consider around colour theory and website design is to understand the psychological effects of different colours. It has been theorised that some colours can evoke different emotions and reactions in users. Therefore, website designers should discuss colour choices with their clients to choose colours that align with the overall message and tone of the business. Some examples include; blue, which can often evoke feelings of trust and reliability. Red can evoke feelings of excitement and energy. Pink and purple can make people feel confident and assertive. Finally, green can evoke emotions of satisfaction and wealth. These are only a few of the feelings that colours may evoke in clients. It is essential to discuss this with business owners before the build commences.
It’s not everything, but colour choices do matter.
In conclusion, colour theory is one aspect of web design that can significantly impact the overall aesthetic and user experience of a website. Understanding and utilising colour theory can help designers and small business owners create visually appealing and effective websites by using complementary, analogous colours, colour schemes and psychological effects of different colours.
As always, live large and take charge – Cam.