I wrote an article in 2014 about the perfect color for your website. Because of security issues I pulled the article, but it was a popular post. I updated it and am republishing it today. Enjoy!

I  read an article on ProBlogger, titled ‘The Psychology of Color: Is Your Color Choice Making or Breaking Your Website?‘   The article was interesting and it got me thinking. It brought up the fact that humans emotionally react to colors and then went on to relate that to websites. The psychology of color has been proven and hypothesized over and over again, so much so, that when I was in college I took a Marketing class that revolved solely around colors and what colors to use in what markets.  It is why any marketing I did for the medical field was usually in greens or blues, which are thought to be calming and reassuring.

How does color translate to our blogs?

You might think that your site will look great done all in black and white, but the impression that you are giving your readers, might be ridiculously different then your expectations.

There are also considerations to be made about contrasts and screen resolutions. If people with sight issues go to your blog, will they be able to read your writing?

It is a lot to think about, so choosing the right color is a MUST, when setting up your blog design.

Avoid contrasting colors:

Can You Read Me?

Can You Read Me?

Can You Read Me?

Even using high contrast colors can also play havoc with some readers. A lot of picky readers have expressed discomfort when reading light text on black background. While older readers are said to read best with light text on dark backgrounds. High contrast being the key. No matter what you read, there is always an opinion about one side. Some say that white background with black text causes eye strain, but there are similar reports about black background with light text. The key is to use what feels comfortable on your blog. And get your reader’s feedback.

 

The Psychology of Color

Now that you know to pick contrasting colors, it is time to pick a color scheme that feels and looks good. Here are some color schemes that I put together for inspiration. All of these color palettes were in-turn inspired by book covers.

The Grayscale Look – For a vintage and sophisticated blog

When checking out a design in grayscale, the first thing that comes to mind is timeless. A vintage looking photograph. When engaging with a deep black, you give an air of authority or intelligence, but also mourning and evil. The black hat vs. white hat usually denotes good and evil. The grayscale look can also give your blog a feel of sophistication and creativity.

If Grayscale is too limiting, try a spot color

By adding a spot color you can give your blog a vintage feel with a modern flair. Choose a spot color that reflects your blogs creative style.

Blues & Greens – For a harmonious blog

Blues and Greens are favorites with the majority of the population. Blue, in particular, is considered the most popular favorite color. Blues and greens give websites an organic and earthy feel. Looking at the colors blue and green will physically calm a person down, within reason. Ridiculously bright blues can have the opposite effect. Blue and greens are actually considered restful and healing, which is why bedrooms and medical clinics will be painted in blue. Greens promote growth and health. As an opposite, when you combine harsh greens and blues it can actually lead people to think of your blog as cold or sterile.

Green and Blue are both positive and restful. Use the deep colors and not the harsher versions of the colors.

Reds & Yellows – For a bold and exciting looking blog

Reds and Yellows are bold colors and can be abused very easily. Both colors draw attention, but can be overpowering. They eye always goes directly to reds and is a very energetic color that increases heart rate and will actually make you feel hungry. It is not recommended to use a lot of red on your web site and is usually used as a spot color, but if it is used in the right way can really add a bold or boudoir feel to your design. Yellow in contrast to the red is considered bold but cheerful and will give the feeling of happiness and optimism. Viewing yellow is said to release serotonin. I have a darker yellow depicted here…which paired with the red can actually make your readers hungry. If you don’t believe me, think about all the orange, yellow and red food chain logos.

Give your blog a boudoir or dangerous feel with reds and yellows.

Purple, Blues & Pinks – For a sophistical and fantastical blog

The color purple has to be the most popular blog design color that I use. Not because of my personal preference, even though I do favor purple, but because it would seem that book bloggers tend to also favor purple. Purple is the color of Royalty. It is considered the color of wealth and sophistication. It also is an intelligent color is said to stimulate the portion of the brain that solves problems. A good design with well-placed purple can give your blog a mysterious, yet sophisticated feeling. Include spot colors of a pretty green and blues and you bring an organic, fantastical feel to the design.

Purples and pinks are often associated with femininity, but can be used with a gender neutral look if paired with the right contrasting color.

Purples are there to spark the creativity and pinks to bring out the feminine side of the design. This is the perfect fantastical scheme for a females inspired design. Pinks are the softer version of red. Bold in flavor but calming because of it’s muted tones. Pinks give your blog a romantic and fertile flavoring, denoting gentle and love like emotions. Mix the purple with the pink and it will give your blog a very sexy, but not in-your-face, bawdy look. The violet tones also elude to the delicate nature, leaning into purple-blue hues to invoke honesty and truthfulness. Go darker with a magenta to give your blog a passion with that feminine undertone of the purple.

Oranges, Yellows and Browns – Give your blog an Earthy feel

Strike a positive feel and look with oranges, yellows, and brown. The browns that lead to orange give the feel of organic earthiness. The fall like colors speak of change, but because it gives the viewer thoughts of the Earth it lends an air of trustworthiness and reliability. Because they are reddish tones in the oranges it also speaks of boldness, but that boldness translates to stimulation and fun. It makes the viewers hungry! Yellows are fun, creative and cheerful. Combined it gives your blog an organic, trustworthy appearance, that hints of fun and energy.

Oranges, yellows, and browns are organic and make the viewer hungry.

More Bold & Inspiring Color Palettes from Covers!

These dark browns mixed with the purples give the design a mysterious feel, but with an organic feel. It’s very fantastical and pulls you in.

The bold mix of colors used in this cover give the feeling of fun, change and excitement. Use the light lime green as the main color and the bold pinks and purples as accents to give your blog a fun and feminine feel.

I really like this color combination. Someone please hire me to make this into a design. The colors are feminine and aquatic, like the beach meets the garden.

This post was inspired by the following articles:

The Psychology of Color: Is Your Color Choice Making or Breaking Your Website? by Guest Blogger
25 Examples of Perfect Color Combinations in Web Design by Gisele Muller
Psychological profiling by:
Business, Sales and the World Wide Web Are In Color via Precision Intermedia

5 Comments

  1. Wanda circumspect harker

    Oh my goodness, thank you!!! I love all of what you did!!! Now I have to decide which one to pick because I love them all. Also, tell people to make sure that your background doesn’t take away from what you are trying to say and make sure you can actually read the font. I was on a website that the font matched the background so it was so hard to read!!!!

    Reply
  2. Shari

    Thank you so much! I had problems getting to the old post and was taken to some dubious sites. I pulled the design I just did and I am looking for better colors. Will look at this more when I get home!

    Reply
  3. Sue @ Crushingcinders

    I am using a green/blue combination, which is working for now, but i am tempted by the purple which i never would have thought of. Thank you. The book covers you used for inspiration are stunning.
    I subscribe by email and have noticed that some posts like this one come through as code and I can’t read the preview so only have the subject line to decide if i want to read more. I get a lot of email and am worried that i am missing out if an email doesnt immediately catch my attention.

    Reply
  4. Erin

    Nice!. I went with mostly Grey/Black because that is what I find soothing and comfortable. I can literally feel my shoulders loosening when I switch other programs to that sort of color scheme. And I use red for spot color. But I keep my blog pretty minimalist.

    Reply
  5. Nemo @ Young Adult At Heart

    Without knowing anything about marketing or colour theory really, I went with blue/pink/purple, and I think what you said about that combination is correct. Using an aqua green as a spot colour I think our blog Young Adult at Heart, is fun, charming, and sophisticated.

    Reply

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