What’s the Best Color Palette For Your Website? (& 5 Handy Tips To Help You Pick An Attention-grabbing Color Palette)

We humans are visual creatures, that’s why we retain more information if we see the things in front of us rather than just having them spoken out loud.

So when you’re constructing your website, it’s also important to consider the visuals and design if you want users to actually click on your site.

Color, for one, is a huge facet when it comes to branding. 

Choosing the perfect colors and making sure they work well together can really jazz up your website.

When everything looks good, people are more likely to stick around and check out your content. 

So whether you’re marketing your products online, making your sales page attractive, or just want to share enjoyable content to everybody on the internet, choosing the best color palette can work wonders in converting curiosity into cashable clicks.

Understanding the Fundamentals of an appealing color palette

A woman holding a sheet of paper displaying a color wheel and taking notes on her laptop.

Before we get into what makes a website visually appealing, you should first know and understand how you’re going to be choosing those colors in the first place.

And that’s where the color wheel and color theory really come in handy!

Understanding color theory and the color wheel is essential for designing an engaging website. 

It’s all about grasping how different colors work together. Whether they clash or complement each other, and the emotions they evoke in your audience. 

From fiery reds to calming blues, each color brings its own vibe to the table, and knowing how to blend them can make your website striking and memorable.

And while it is your website, choosing the right color palette isn’t just all about personal preference.

Rather, it’s about creating a cohesive experience for your visitors. 

Whether you opt for bold colors that grab attention, or more subtle, muted tones, your palette should perfectly reflect your brand’s personality and values. 

Think of it like setting the stage for your online presence, where every color choice plays a crucial role in shaping the overall impression.

The goal is to create harmony and coherence throughout your design, so don’t be afraid to experiment until you find the winning combination that speaks to you and your brand’s personality.

Why should I care about my website’s color palette?

A blue 3D question mark on top of a peach background.

After you’ve set all of your sales page’s components up, from the content, to the home page, the headers, links (and backlinks), you might be thinking that you could just ease up on the visual aspect of your website and just throw a few colors together and think it’ll do the job.

Well, spoiler alert

If you do that, then all of your progress and the effort that you put into making your website will all go to waste!

So yes, colors are a big deal and yes, you should actually care about choosing the right one for your brand.

Your website’s landing page is the very first thing visitors see, and the colors that you choose helps set the overall mood and create a stronger message for your brand (if done correctly).

Now you might be wondering, how does picking the right palette enhance user experience?

It increases brand recognition

Your color choices can help highlight key elements on your website, guiding visitors’ attention to what matters most. 

Just like using a highlighter in a textbook, you want to draw focus to the important bits, whether it’s a call-to-action button or a featured product. 

This initial impression is crucial because it sets the tone for how visitors perceive your brand and can determine whether they stick around or bounce off to greener pastures.

Also, having a consistent color scheme across your website can significantly boost brand recognition.

For example, just take a look at iconic brands like Coca-Cola or McDonald’s, their distinctive red and yellow color palette immediately brings their logos to mind. 

By establishing a cohesive visual identity, you make it easier for customers to remember and identify your brand in the thick of digital noise, and this recognition fosters trust and loyalty, further encouraging repeat visits and purchases.

Helps generate an emotional response

Aesthetics aren’t the only aspect at play here.

Because of this neat little idea called ‘color psychology’, colors also have the power to evoke emotions and trigger subconscious responses. 

Whether it’s the warmth of a sunny yellow or the tranquility of a cool blue, your color choices can influence how visitors feel about your brand and its offerings. 

For example, a health and wellness website might opt for soothing greens and blues to convey a sense of calm and relaxation, while a tech startup might lean more towards bold, energetic colors to portray innovation and excitement.

Makes your website more accessible 

Last but not the least, choosing the right color palette can make your content more accessible and user-friendly, which will ultimately boost clickthrough rates. 

By considering factors like contrast and readability, you ensure that your website’s features are easy to navigate for all visiting users. 

This inclusivity not only enhances the user experience, but will also reflect positively on your brand’s values and commitment to accessibility. 

If you have a visually appealing and responsive design, it invites visitors to explore further and engage with your content.

Plus, let’s face it, nobody wants to squint at a poorly designed website with clashing colors that don’t mesh well together.

What are the types of color schemes?

Now that you’re well aware of why having the right color palette helps your audience engage and stay engaged, it’s time to know how to choose the perfect palette based on the most common relationship between colors.

Here are the 5 most common color relationships to help you get started.

Monochromatic

An example of a monochromatic orange color scheme.

If you’re a fan of simplicity, monochromatic might be the way to go. 

Monochromatic color schemes only rely on one color with different shades and tints, which results in a unified appearance. 

Despite there being a lack of contrast, this kind of color scheme turns out to be looking sleek and having a refined aesthetic. 

A mono palette also provides flexibility in adjusting the intensity of colors, making it a popular choice for charts and graphs where high contrast is not required.

Essentially, It’s all about sticking to multiple variations of one, single hue.

Analogous 

An example of an analogous color scheme consisting of orange, dark orange, and yellow.

In an analogous color scheme, you basically pick one main color and then throw in the two colors sitting right next to it on the color wheel. 

And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even toss in two more colors adjacent to those first two for a total of five hues. 

The cool thing about analogous schemes is that they don’t smack you in the face with high-contrast colors.

Instead, they create a more subtle and harmonious vibe that’s refreshing to the eyes. 

So, if you’re aiming for a soft and gentle design, analogous colors might be the way for you. 

Complementary

An example of a contrasting color scheme consisting of orange and purple.

Ever heard of the term, ‘opposites attract’?

Well, the same applies for colors!

By pairing hues from opposite ends of the color wheel, like a fiery red mixed with a cool green, it can create a dynamic contrast that will surely grab your visitors’ attention.

Though, because of the high contract that complementary colors create, remember to be cautious in selecting the colors to use for your website to avoid making it look messy.

As a rule of thumb, you should only pick one main color to take up most of the space and have the other complementary color spruce things up as accents around your website.

This kind of color scheme works like a charm for charts and graphs, as it helps draw attention to the stuff that really matters and make important key points pop. 

Triadic

An example of a triadic color scheme consisting of orange, pink, and sky blue.

If you want to make an even bigger statement, try incorporating a triadic color scheme to your website. 

Triadic color schemes involve selecting three colors evenly spaced (in the shape of a triangle) around the color wheel.

This offers high contrast while still maintaining a consistent tone. 

Though, do take note that using all three colors at the same time can be a bit overpowering, so it’s advisable to choose one dominant color and use the others more in small bits or in softer tints. 

Compound

An example of a compound color scheme consisting of orange, magenta, and dark blue.

For those who want the best of both worlds, compound color schemes offer a blend of complementary and analogous colors. 

Compound, aka the split complementary color scheme, works about the same way as complementary color schemes do, but rather than selecting the color exactly opposite to the first color, it chooses the two colors on either side of it.

And the compound color scheme has both pros and cons. 

On one hand, using any two colors from the scheme will result in a strong contrast, though, achieving the correct balance between these hues may be difficult to pin down.

That’s why you may have to end up experimenting with this color scheme to find the right combination that’s both eye-catching and complementary.

How do I choose the best color palette for me?

Whew, are you feeling overwhelmed already? Though, I’m not going to blame you if you are.

But don’t worry, cause we’ve got your back on this one too. 

Here’s a simple roadmap to find out which color palette works best for your website:

  • Choose your primary color first: Your primary color sets the mood and vibe for your entire website. So whether you opt for a bold and vibrant hue or a soft and muted tone, make sure it aligns with your brand identity perfectly and resonates with your audience.
  • Pick your background color: Think of your background color as the canvas for your website, as it provides the backdrop against which your content shines. Consider factors like graphic design and visual appeal when selecting a background color, ensuring it complements your primary color and enhances the overall aesthetic of your site.
  • Select your typeface color: When it comes to typeface color, readability is key. Your text should be easy on the eyes and legible against the background color that you chose. Additionally, your typeface color should harmonize with your primary color, creating a cohesive look and feel throughout your entire website.
  • Add additional colors: While it’s tempting to add a plethora of colors to your palette, less is more in the world of web design. Adding too many colors can overwhelm visitors and detract from the overall user experience. Instead, only select a few additional colors that complement your primary color and contribute to a harmonious and cohesive design.

5 handy tips for picking your website’s color scheme

1. Consider Your Brand’s Aesthetic

When selecting colors for your brand, keep the website’s entire look in mind. 

If your company prefers a modern and sleek image, using a minimalist color palette might help maintain that clean and smart appearance. 

Too many colors or too much material on your website might overwhelm visitors and distract from the important information you want to convey. 

By ensuring that your language, pictures, and colors all work together cohesively, you can make a strong impression on your clients that will stay.

And remember to stay true to your brand’s identity!

This will help you create a cohesive visual experience that resonates with your audience and further reinforces brand recognition.

2. Know What You Want Your Colors to Say 

Welcome back, color psychology!

As you might have already guessed, different colors can bring out different emotions and associations, so it’s essential to consider how these hues will impact your audience. 

Here are some examples of how color coding can psychologically impact your audience and make them have a feel of what your website’s trying to convey:

  • Red: can evoke feelings of excitement and passion
  • Orange: can portray enthusiasm, optimism, and freedom
  • Yellow: shows a sense of joy, warmth, and positivity
  • Green: can induce feelings of luck, harmony, and health
  • Blue: can convey a sense of trust and tranquility 
  • Purple: can bring out imagination, fantasy, and royalty
  • Black: portrays mystery, sophistication, and power
  • Brown: can be associated with security, resilience, and dependability
  • White: shows a sense of purity, simplicity and cleanliness

By tapping into these psychological cues, you can create a color scheme that not only looks appealing but also draws out the desired response that you want from your visitors.

3. Prepare Multiple Designs

Try out a bunch of color combos on your website and see which ones catch your eye the most. 

Then, give yourself a little bit of time to reflect and come back to it a few days later to see if your favorites shifted to another.

Why should you do this?

Well, it’s because what looks great in your mind’s eye might not always translate well onto digital screens. 

Colors can appear differently online compared to how they look in real life, so what seemed like your winning combo might just fall flat. 

And if it does, don’t worry, It’s all part of the process. 

Don’t hesitate to tweak, review, and even scrap what doesn’t quite hit the mark. 

Just like website design, finding the perfect color scheme is an ongoing journey of trial and error, so don’t give up!

4. Test Your Color Scheme Across Different Devices

Once you’ve settled on your color scheme, it’s time to put it to the test across various devices. 

Check how it looks on mobile, desktop, and any other platforms where your customers might interact with your website. 

This active approach gives you valuable insights into how your chosen colors represent your brand on different screens.

And once your color scheme is live, keep an eye on how your audience reacts to it. 

Pay attention to key performance indicators like conversions and site interest to gauge its impact on brand engagement. 

Remember, it’s all about experimenting with your palette and ensuring consistent color saturation across all platforms, because not every color you see online is true to its original tone.

Factors like tints, shades, and saturation levels can drastically affect how colors appear on screen. 

By maintaining uniform saturation, you ensure that your colors pop just the way you intended them to.

5. Simplicity is Key

SouthTech Creations' home page showcasing beauty in simplicity by having minimal designs and a teal monochromatic color palette.

Choosing a color scheme for your website might sound daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. 

Instead, aim for simplicity

A cluttered, overly busy color scheme can overwhelm the eye and distract from your website’s message.

By keeping things simple, you effortlessly bring your color scheme together. 

With just a few colors in play, everything looks cohesive and harmonious, and plus, simplicity makes it easier for viewers to navigate your site without feeling overwhelmed. 

After all, the stamp of approval for any fantastic website is one that’s easy to understand and enjoyable to use. 

3 color tools to help you choose your website’s color palette

So far, we’ve covered a lot of theory and practical strategies for determining which colors work well together and why.

But when you’re in the thick of designing and need to choose colors quickly, having some helpful tools on hand might be a lifesaver.

That’s why I compiled 3 of the most used color tools to help you find the right design for your website.

Adobe color

Adobe Color's interface showing the site's various features.

The perfect color tool for beginners and experts alike, Adobe Color is a free web-based tool that makes creating color schemes for your website a breeze. 

With various color rules and modes, you can easily explore different combinations and harmonies. 

Whether you want to generate schemes based on predefined rules or create custom palettes from scratch, Adobe Color has you covered, and plus, you can extract colors from images or upload your own for even more inspiration. 

Canva’s color palette generator

A simple yet eye-catching landing page by Canva for their color palette generator.

If you’re just starting out and have no idea where to start, Canva’s color palette generator is the ideal color tool for effortlessly creating vibrant color schemes for your website. 

An upside of using this tool is that it lets users upload images and color palettes will be generated based off of those. 

So if you have a specific image that embodies your brand’s essence, simply upload it to Canva to extract its exact colors. 

Additionally, you have the option to explore pre-generated color palettes or create your own from scratch.

Coolers

The colorful interface of Cooler that's encouraging visitors to click on their CTA.

Now here’s a color picking tool that caters more towards those who already have a little more experience than the average person.

One of Coolers cool features is that it can easily pull palettes from photos similar to how Canva does. 

Plus, the website also offers convenient add-ons and extensions for effortless saving and exporting of your color creations. 

So whether you’re after pre-made schemes or want to delve into each individual color, Coolers makes the process effortless with its intuitive tools. 

Need a second opinion on your website’s color palette clickability?

So, you’ve already gone through the article and covered the rest of the tips we gave you and incorporated them into your own website.

Good job, you already fought half the battle!

Now that your website’s draft is ready to be aired to every social media platform, all that’s left to do is to hit that “publish now” button. 

But then you hesitate, thinking that there’s just that one missing piece that would complete your website’s complex puzzle of a design. 

If you’re having some second thoughts, don’t worry, we’re here to help!

By signing up for our free online audit, we can give you more personalized tips and suggestions to make your design pop even more and transform your website into a click through machine. 

So, what are you waiting for?

FAQs

What are the most common colors?

The most commonly used colors in branding are red, green, and blue. This applies to website color palettes as well. You could break the trend with a more creative site and use yellow or pink, but the basic colors are popular for a reason.

What colors attract the human eye most?

Red and orange appear to be the most eye-catching hues. These colors stand out, that’s why they’re commonly used on warning signs and safety equipment. Yellow is also a popular hue, coming in second only behind red and orange.

What is the color harmony rule for websites?

Website color harmony follows the 60%, 30%, and 10% criteria. Consider using a single color for 60% of your website, such as the backdrop. Then 30% is another color used to emphasize certain regions or locations. The remaining 10% is another color for emphasizing buttons or special CTAs.

Why are color palettes important to website design?

Color allows us to process and store images more quickly than colorless (black and white) images, which may assist to improve brand awareness and compel visitors to your website to act. Color schemes can also be used to form subconscious judgments, which is why your palette shouldn’t contradict your brand’s concept.

What is the best text color for web design?

Black text, paired with a white background, is hands down the best text color when designing a website, as this offers optimal readability, while also having a clean and minimalist vibe.

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