There are many factors that affect website conversions; some are more abstract than others. The colors that you use in your website design actually do have an effect on the actions that your visitors take and can make the difference between a sale and a visitor leaving the site since colors affect shoppers in a subliminal way. What works for the shoppers at one website may not apply to other websites, so surveying your individual customers is very important. Here are four ways to evaluate how the color schemes on your website could be affecting your sales:
1. A/B Testing or Variant Testing
Testing different designs for different visitors to see which design and color scheme work best is an excellent way to figure out which color scheme and design set up converts best. Some things to vary in your testing situations in addition to the overall color scheme are: the placement and color of the action buttons, different calls to action that are written on the buttons. Once you have one best scenario, continue testing to achieve better and better converting designs and colors schemes. Another factor to consider when testing, depending on your product and your brand is the season. Consider using different colors in different seasons if it applies to your business.
2. Listen to Your Customers
When in doubt, ask your customers what they think. This can be a poll posted on your website, a survey sent via email, or some formal analysis taken in a focus group setting. What should you ask them about? Show specific A/B examples and ask which ones they like better, and ask open ended questions to get the most feedback from your customers.
3. Exit Surveys
You may gain some insight and ask some survey questions about the color and layout specifically in these types of surveys. When a visitor leaves your site without making a purchase or completing another goal you have set, you can serve a pop up survey asking them about their experience, or if they plan on making a purchase. Even though these can sometimes be invasive or frowned upon, if done tactfully they do work and you can offer a coupon or other incentive to fray the level of annoyance.
Serving advertisement banners to visitors that have been on your website is called retargeting. It is often a broad technique that reaches all of your recent site visitors within the last 30, 60, or 90 days depending on how you have it set up. You can also use color testing on different ads to see which banner ads perform better. That can give insight as to which colors are more appealing to your customers.
Here are the five main colors (3 primary colors and 2 secondary colors) that make up most of the color schemes for websites. Of course there are blends of other colors, but these 5 can give you the main psychological profile for each color so that you can better associate a color with your product, service, brand, and company.
• Red: Red is a strong and intense color that can actually have both positive and negative meanings, so it is important to get your customers’ input if you are using a lot of red in your design. Studies have actually shown that when looking at red, people can start breathing more rapidly and increase their heart rate. The positive aspects of red can mean love, passion, and energy. However, red can also mean blood, anger, danger, debt, and it is the universal color for stop. Because of the negative aspects of the color, most designers will advise not to use it on buttons that you want people to click on and in most cases, for web design it should only be used as an accent color.
• Yellow: Yellow represents that sun in almost every culture because it is the brightest color to the human eye. Yellow usually invokes feelings of cheer, sunshine, happiness and fun. However caution should still be used in yellow for website designs because, not only because it can also mean cowardly or cautious, but because it is hard to see against white backgrounds and can also cause eye fatigue if overused. If you use yellow designs on a background where it can stand out nice and bright then it will be effective in bringing the bright sunshine through in a way that is not overpowering. Yellow can help your website convey feelings like: positivity, hope, joy and warmth.
• Orange: A combination of red and yellow, orange brings out a combination of the same feelings that red and yellow can. The overall consensus is that orange represents usefulness and happiness with its bright and warm aura. In the same way that red increases breathing and heart rate, orange has been known to stimulate brain activity because of an increase in oxygen intake with those looking at orange coloring. When it comes to a website design, orange works well with travel and tropical themes since it brings on feelings of warmth and fun in the sun. Orange also works well with educational and health sites because of those effects on brain activity and increased oxygenation.
• Blue: Blue is actually the most popular color used on the web. It is so popular in website color designs because of the positive effects that blue has been shown to have on the psyche. Blue is calming and cooling but it also brings about feelings of trust, wisdom, loyalty, strength and stability. Many of those redeeming qualities that companies want to put forth in their web presence. Trust and security are some of the most important features for an ecommerce site to have since they need to earn the trust of customers who will shop online. Studies have shown that people are more productive and perform better in blue rooms; therefore when blue is used on a website it can increase the follow through of completing forms or checkout purchases not only because visitors get that impression of trust and security but the added benefits of the productivity. One word of caution to designers though, too much blue can be so calming that website visitors will feel too relaxed and complacent to place an order.
• Green: Being that green is the secondary color that is a combination of yellow and blue, it also combines some aspects of both colors. The themes that green usually represents are healing, nature, growth, money, and relaxation. Of course, as with most colors, there can be a negative impact from green, as it also can represent greed or envy. Use caution to make sure that customers and website visitors do not get the wrong impression about your company. For the most part, green does represent positive aspects and combining objects to represent your theme can help achieve the right feeling among your online visitors. Aqua shades of green are often used to represent healing, while dark green usually means money, banking, or even the military. Many environmentally conscious companies use green to represent recycling, rebirth, spring, and freshness.