With so many different elements to focus on, ecommerce business owners often forget about the significance of color theory in web design. Unfortunately, this isn’t a casual detail that can be ignored. The colors used on your website have a significant impact on how visitors perceive your brand and the products you’re selling.

The Power of Color

Color is all around you. Whether you’re in a cinderblock jail cell or at the top of the Grand Canyon, your eyes are transmitting hundreds or thousands of different colors to your brain at any given moment. And once these colors reach your brain, they significantly influence the way you think about the world around you.

According to Sommer-Sommer, colors can have three different effects:

  • Psychological effect. This effect is generally based on personal experiences. For example, green is associated with “growth,” “nature,” and “financial well-being.”
  • Symbolical effect. Some colors are associated with very specific objects. For example, you’ve heard people call something “sky blue” or “fire engine red.”
  • Cultural effect. Some colors have different meanings based on the culture. For example, white is a color of innocence and purity in western culture – which is why you see it worn by brides and religious figures. However, in eastern culture, it’s actually associated with death and sadness.

Color has an impact on the way people view brands, products, and services, but how important is it? Research shows that people make subconscious judgments about products within 90 seconds of the initial viewing, with 62 to 90 percent of the assessment based on color alone.

Few aspects of marketing or product design can persuade or dissuade a customer more than color. So, if your goal is to control the way your audience views your brand and its products, color psychology must be one of your primary focal points.

3 Ways You Can Use Color in Ecommerce Design

When it comes to ecommerce design, color psychology is especially important. If you aren’t currently spending any time thinking about color in a strategic manner, then you’re missing out on an opportunity elevate your site. With that being said, here are some specific ways you can improve:

  1. Use Color to Increase Urgency

Attention spans aren’t what they used to be. People are bombarded with thousands of marketing messages daily; you can’t afford to sit around and wait for customers to take action. If you want them to buy a product or sign up for a service, getting them to act quickly and efficiently is key.

One way you can increase urgency is by using the color red. You’ll often see ecommerce websites use red for calls-to-action. This product page from Fabness is a nice example. Notice how red is used in the “Create Now” button, which draws the reader’s attention and forces it to pay attention. Maybe you can find a similar way to use red?

  1. Use Color to Build Trust

Few things are more important in marketing than building trust with website visitors. When a customer trusts you, they’re much more engaged and willing to buy.

Blue is considered a stable and trustworthy color. If you can find a way to incorporate blue, especially in pages that deal with brand identity and values, you’ll find it easier to connect with visitors on a meaningful level.

This web page from Huddle provides a nice illustration of what this looks like in practice. The content is discussing security and how customers can trust the brand. The blue background supports this notion by telling the brain to believe what it sees.

  1. Use Color to Simplify

Color also can simplify web design. As you’ve probably noticed, many ecommerce websites now use white backgrounds. This negative space reduces clutter and allows users to focus on the important content and calls-to-action. Consider taking a similar approach with your own site.

Putting it All Together

It’s easy to feel that color is arbitrary. In fact, many ecommerce businesses treat it this way. But if you really want to thrive, you need to think more strategically. By appreciating the power of color psychology and how it impacts consumer decision making, you can instigate positive change and drive sales and brand loyalty.