Choosing Effective Color Palette For Your Blog

How to choose an effective color palette for your blog or website colors is easier than you think!  Sure you can use the color scheme generator but when choosing the right color palette you need a few more tips.  Last week Renee showed us 5 Online Color Palette Tools which is an easy blog color picker.  This week we’re learning the meanings of colors and how to have the right color palette.

When choosing a color palette for your blog or website colors it’s ok to be unique—you don’t need to feel stifled by what’s traditional. But you do need to keep your audience in mind and remain consistent with common expectations for colors. Individual colors have certain associations that vary depending on context.

For every good emotion that a color can evoke, there are some equally bad ones:

Red: strength, passion / stop, hot
Yellow: happy, sunshine / warning, jealous
Orange: warm, energy / danger, caution
Green: fresh, natural / sick, envy
Blue: heaven, calm / cold, sad
Purple: royal, sensual / death, foolish
Brown: warm, earthy / dirty, dull

Common color combinations also play a powerful role in how emotions are influenced. For example, when you see red and green you are reminded of Christmas. Likewise, when you see red, white and blue together the feeling is patriotic. Here are some websites and blogs that are successful at using color to cater to their audience.

Food

Examples of food websites/blogs.

Food products and services tend to choose colors that look like food. Color has a huge effect on perceived flavor and that is why some companies add artificial colors to food. We are instinctively programmed with the ability to spot food that is safe and healthy. Unappetizing color combinations will turn people away. For example, colors like blues, purples and grays are uncommon because they are sometimes associated with toxic or spoiled food. Reds, oranges, yellows, browns and greens are the most common colors of food and are perceived as attractive, edible and nutritional. Nevertheless, if you’re blogging about cupcakes and other treats then you can certainly go with colors that are more unusual.

Children

Examples of children websites/blogs.

Children are often associated with bright colors—and a lot of them. Although vivid, saturated colors tend to stimulate the senses—rainbow palettes made from basic colors (think Crayola 8-pack) can come across as juvenile and cheap. You should always keep in mind the sophistication of the audience. Is your audience the children, or their parents? You can have a palette made from every color of the rainbow, but give it a more refined look by simply adjusting the hues to slightly-off-from-traditional and by toning down the intensity.

Wedding

Examples of wedding websites/blogs.

Color trends for weddings change frequently to stay current. And modern brides and grooms spend a great deal of energy on making their weddings unique. A smart choice for wedding-related sites/blogs is to use soft shades or neutral hues for their website palette. This prevents your site from being quickly dated and lets your trend-current photography be the focal point. Curious about the hottest trends in wedding colors? Check out this site.

Banking/Financial

Examples of financial websites/blogs.

Financial themed businesses should use color palettes that evoke trust, security and strength. Their palettes often lean towards more traditional colors like navys, browns, blacks and greens. Most choose to stay away from the color red which has a negative emotion associated with it in banking (red ink is used to denote debt or losses on balance sheets). Likewise, a whimsical color palette including pinks, purples, aquas or sunny yellows could be taken as frivolous.

Want to learn more about how color affects emotions? Visit this site about color astrology, this one about color emotions, and this one about gender colors.

More Blogging Tips:

Feel free to as Renee any questions you have!  You can leave a question in the comments or on the Tip Junkie Facebook page. Or if you’re looking for a specific blogging tip, let me know! I’ll be happy to find it for you. {wink}

Renee — Bold MomRenee Deming is the owner of the graphic design and web company Studio Bold, wife of an extremely supportive husband and mother of two amazing little men. She eats, sleeps and breathes design. She lives for logos and loves making websites and blogs go from good to great! She also blogs at boldmom.com where she features amazing parent entrepreneurs who manage to grow a business while raising a family.

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5 Comments

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  1. Do you think it matters if a blog uses dark backgrounds? I am always drawn to dark backgrounds but then I worry that it’s less common, and it will somehow turn viewers away. For almost every site I design, I always seem to end up with a dark gray background, and then change the text colors to fit the theme slightly better. So basically I am designing for what I like rather than what I think a viewer would expect to see:(

  2. Thank you for this great info – it makes a lot of sense – and helps me with the words to explain to my own clients about their new blogging sites’ looks! I know that many new bloggers get hung up on this and you’ve explained a lot – it does take time to get a feel for what you want to express. Great article and really appreciate this.

  3. This is a great article! I like how it shows the positive and negative emotions you can have about a color..very informative thanks!

    -Lindsay
    Delighted Momma

  4. This is a wonderful post with so many helpful tips! I’m a new-ish blogger (only three months in) and while I put together a formal that works well enough for now, I really want to nail down a design and logo. Very happy to have the resources you shared!!! I would love some feedback if you have the time. Thanks a ton!

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