In the world of active web design there is no such thing as accidental website color design. Before you even work on your logo, you should take some time to do a little color psychology and marketing research. If you already are fully invested in your branding, you can still benefit from using website color design for your calls to action and landing pages
Using Color Psychology to Create Successful Calls to Action (CTA)
Calls to action (this could be a button, link, or icon) prompt visitors to click which keeps them on your website reducing bounce rate. The key to effective landing pages or other web page design is strategic use of active and passive colors. Which color will convince someone to click?
- Active vs Passive. What colors are active? Which are passive? Actually, any color can be either. Your website should utilize two or three key colors in varying shades rather than going completely wild with the color wheel. Of course, the colors are all part of your branding scheme. Those colors are your passive colors. Select one more color that will only be used for calls to action like “click here” or “buy now”. Your active color or call-to-action color should stand out so that it immediately tells visitors, “Hey, you really want to click on this!” Want to see an example? Check out this elegant active color choice by Laura Ashley. See how the green is only used to indicate “click here” so it stands out? But is not jarring. It does not have to be in-your-face red to reinforce the call to action.
- Create Contrast. Color psychology study shows that there are various colors that contrast well. Think in terms of highlights rather than block colors. Avoid a 50/50 color split and pick one color you’ll use as the base and another as minimal highlights. Try using the Color Scheme Designer noting that picking a color that is outside a perfect complementary, triad, or tetrad scheme will likely be a color that will stand out as your active color.
- Whitespace. One of the leading trends in website color design is to have sparse spaces (also known as white space though not necessarily the color white). Don’t be afraid to use this technique as creative use of whitespace can help visitors isolate useful information as well as separate a call to action as something unique from other content.
- Do Your Homework. Combining the science of color psychology with design principles results in a marketing strategy that works. Different colors speak to different audiences and evoke different connotations. Blue, for example is a color commonly associated with security and calm. Not too surprising that Facebook, a social media website that lulls you into believing your content is private, uses blue as its base color and red (associated with excitement, energy, importance) for the notifications. Can you resist clicking on those little red squares when you log in? Probably not!