What is the first thing you notice about an app? It is mainly the logo, shape, and color (not necessarily in that order). While some believe that color in a UI is just for aesthetics, it serves more than one purpose. Color psychology answers many questions on users' psyche, i.e., how they react to the color scheme of any app or website, allowing designers to apply colors to the UI accordingly.
Importance of Color Psychology in UX
Colors have multiple roles when it comes to UX design. Our brain processes colors that stimulate our vision, inducing various emotions and reactions.
Research shows that certain hues bring out specific emotions in users, which is why businesses use color psychology to influence their target audience in many ways:
Using a suitable color scheme for your website attracts the users' attention.
The visual dimensions affect the users' purchase decisions.
Color helps people assess a brand in just a few seconds.
Colored ads are much easier to recognize than black and white ones.
Sales increase when there's a change of color in the advertisements.
Psychologists suggest that around 60% of the time, acceptance or rejection of a product depends on the color impression. Applying a lousy color combination to the UI dramatically affects the whole UX design, like a bad copy or other misplaced design components.
Using Color Psychology To Influence Emotions
With endless combinations of colors to explore, it can be a little challenging to decide which one would go well with your interface.
Knowing about different color categories and what they symbolize can help ease the process:
1. Warm colors
These colors can trigger strong emotions in viewers, like passion and vigor. But when used in excess, they make people anxious or aggressive. Designers should take special care while implementing warm colors into their designs, such as:
Red - Red is the most robust warm color that users notice right away, indicating warmth and passion. It is highly effective for promotional campaigns such as product sales. But applying too much red can also make users see red.
Yellow - Yellow is the second-most eye-catching color after red. It symbolizes cheerfulness and optimism and is applied to CTA (call-to-action) buttons. Like red, yellow is also used as a cautionary color when users take the wrong path.
Orange - Brands that promote creativity, liberty, and youth use orange color, but excessive use of orange color puts strain on users' eyes, especially older people.
Pink - A symbol of love, kindness, and feminity, brands use tints of pink for products mainly related to kids, women, and confectionery. But it also raises awareness for the campaign to arouse the consumers' interest.
Gold - Expensive brands use gold color to indicate wealth, comfort, and luxury.
2. Cool Colors
Cool colors induce calm and tranquility. Businesses use this color category to win their customers' trust. But their excessive use can also imply impersonality and aloofness.
Blue - Blue is a well-known primary cool color that signifies serenity, stability, and reliability. It also indicates professionalism and logic to the order of things in a design, but using too much blue makes users feel blue.
Green - This color of nature is rejuvenating, optimistic, and motivating for the users during any course of action in the app or website.
Purple - Purple indicates bravery, spirituality, wisdom, and royalty and creates an air of mystery for the users.
Silver - Silver is often associated with brands in technology and is often perceived as the color of modernity and innovation.
3. Neutral Colors
Since neutral colors soften other colors, they are commonly used as background colors in a design. Colors under neutrals are the perfect mix of cool and warm tones, like:
Brown - Brown is a color that indicates sophistication and elegance in luxury brands and gives a natural, rustic tone to organic brands.
Black - Black is the most common color representing many aspects, such as power, mystery, strength, and elegance. It is primarily used text color in an interface for better readability.
White - One can never go wrong with white, whether for creating minimalist looks or providing negative spaces between other design elements to make them look less cluttered.
Beige - Beige gives off a feeling of comfort and coziness when used on a website.
How To Choose The Right Color Scheme?
Just because a color palette is your favorite doesn't mean the users will like it as well. They want a properly functioning interface that makes tasks easier for them, so usability should rank above aesthetics while designing. The site's Color Theory scheme should also be inclusive of color-blind users.
As for selecting colors that go with your brand's image and reel the users in, you can learn how to conduct proper user research, testing, and use various color tools and resources with the Color Theory course on ProApp.
Rashika is the brain behind the content strategy on ProApp, both in terms of courses and marketing. She is an Engineer by education but a Content Writer, UX Writer, Marketer, and Mentor by profession. She has worked with tech giants like IBM and Accenture and has spent the last 3 years working with designers and training them. Currently - Focusing on Building an army of creators via ProApp.