One of the first things that will cause a positive or negative response is the colors used on the site. Each person favors some colors over others so there is no perfect right or wrong color to use. You will have to remember that the colors used will need to be pleasing to the eye. In order to achieve this, the colors must be complimentary to each other and not clash. You may remember seeing a guy wearing plaid pants, with a striped shirt, and purple socks protruding from brown shoes. In a way, he grabbed your attention, but the attention did not lead you to know more about him. On the other hand, a sharply dressed man or woman will attract your attention and you would be comfortable learning more about them. In the same way, a web site needs to be dressed in a way that does not repel a visitor, but instead, creates curiosity. What kind of colors should one use?
There are some colors that go hand in hand with certain things or events. Baby blue is associate with baby boys and pink is associated with baby girls. White goes with weddings and black with funerals and the fortieth and fiftieth birthdays. Red is connected to romance and orange is connected to Halloween along with black. If you have seen a kitchen that has not been remodeled in over thirty years, you may have noticed those chartreuse countertops. That yellowish green color was all the rage back then and was considered the ultra modern look. As time went on, neutral colors became a much safer way to remodel the kitchen. Can you use your existing knowledge of colors for your site?
Yes, but you will need to consider who your target audience is. The internet is global and anyone, anywhere in the world will be able to access your site. For global appeal, you will need to understand that the examples given are from the viewpoint of the Americans. Black is certainly associated with funerals in America, but in Korea, white is the color of funerals. Sending a red card to someone in Iraqi, even for Valentine’s Day, may be considered a threat to one’s life since red means death (Ponder, 2006). In China, the choice color of wedding dresses is red.
Further study on colors will reveal that colors can evoke motion. For red, these emotions can range from war to love with strength, desire, and determination in between (Color Wheel Pro, 2009). Yellow can also be associated with strength as well as sunshine, intellect, happiness and joy. Orange is a combination of yellow and red so it too can help evoke the emotions of the other two colors, but can also be connected to creativity, attraction, and fascination just to name a few. Blue can be associated with wisdom, trust, and loyalty; while green can be associated with money, safety, and freshness. The color purple, a mixture of red and blue can adopt the emotions of the two component colors as well as bring on the aura of royalty. A survey once concluded that young children prefer purple to other colors on a three to one basis. The shades of colors can bring on different emotions as well. A light shade of purple can be associated with romance and nostalgia while the darker shades can make one sad or frustrated.
You cannot leave out black and white since most sites use white backgrounds and black text. This may be a carryover from the paper and ink days or a simple celebration from the monochrome days of past. It is a simple to use, and the contrast between the two makes for easy reading. When the contrast between colors is vague, reading becomes difficult. Contrast will even affect the amount of comfort ability one has with a web page in general. Take a look at the two images showing shades of violet. Which of the two shades would you be more comfortable with? A study, done in the United Kingdom, concludes that people are a lot more pleased when the colors used have greater contrast (World of colouremotion, 2009).
Now that some information is revealed about color, try to remember the sites you have visited. A lot of business sites will use white with black backgrounds a blue accents to secure a strong trust from possible business type of clients. Tattoo and gothic sites will often use black backgrounds and red lettering or similar scheme that evokes the feel of going somewhere considered taboo. Not all dark sites are used to create a forbidden feel, photographers use black and gray backgrounds because they show off the photographs much better than a white background. Whatever color you decide to use, make them create an emotion that goes along with the subject you are presenting. Microsoft Office has pre made color pallets that are shown in the image. You may also want to use the color wheels used by professional decorators to help with connecting colors that complement each other. You can find these on paint related sites or the local paint store.