Website Colors: What NOT to Do

Jackie L.


Knowing how to use color on your website and social media can be the difference between a successful business and one that falls flat.  There’s an art and science to using the correct color or group of colors that are best for your target audience.  Knowing how to utilize color psychology can greatly increase your business’ chance of profits.  However, before you go and rethink your design and color choices, there are some colors that should definitely not be avoided.

Bright Colors

Bright colors on bright colored backgrounds may seem like an attention grabbing combination, but it actually deters a lot of customers.  The bright colors can be like sandpaper to the eye, especially with the varying monitor settings.  No amount of dimming the screen is going to help the customer get through your website.

If you do use bright colors, keep it to a minimum.  Call-to-Action buttons are a great place for bright colors.

Neon Colors

Like bright colors, neon colors are also jarring to the eyes.  Using them too much is sensory overload and will drive away a potential customer quite fast.  Use neon colors sparingly.  A great place to use neon colors would be lines, buttons, or other accent marks that can draw the eye to where you want the visitors to look, according to this article at Design Shack.


You may have heard that “pure black” isn’t a naturally occurring color.  Depending on the person, black may not even be considered a true color, as is white.  When it comes to websites, avoid using large amounts of black.  Black for text is about as far as you can go with website design.  Color psychology tells us that black can be seen as “powerful”, “menacing”, or sometimes “elegant”.  Also cultural context comes into place depending on your target audience.  Instead of pure black, try for a shade of grey or a dark version of another color.

Not sure if black is your website’s color?  Check out these cool designs at Mock Plus.

Red and Green

While red and green are great colors for Christmas, it doesn’t work so well with websites.  Red and green can cause confusion to those with color blindness.  People usually have a strong association with the meaning of red and green, especially when seen together, such as “Yes and No” or “Go and Stop”.

Light Colors on Light Colors

Depending on screen brightness, putting light text on a light background is not a good idea for a website.  Visitors to your website can really miss this important text.  If you are wanting to use a light colored text, place it on a dark background, either a solid color or a dark colored pattern.  Make sure your text is easily readable before committing to publishing your site.

In conclusion…

Making sure you have the right color combination for your business takes a lot of target audience research and knowing the values or emotions you want to convey to your customers.  If you are looking to find the right colors for your business, contact us today!

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