11 Feb 2015by Georgie Cousens

Colour Psychology

Colour appeals to our visual senses and impacts on how we think, feel and behave. Considering that consumers place visual appearance and colour above other factors such as sound, smell and texture, colour is your most powerful marketing tool.

When buying a product:

  • 1% of consumers base their purchase on smell or sound
  • 3% of consumers look at the texture of the product
  • 93% of buyers focus on the visual appearance

Colour directs our eye where to look, what to do, and how to interpret something. Colour puts content into context. Colour helps us decide what is important and what is not. While the psychological impact of colour is subjective, there are some general associations.

Pink:

Romance and femininity Used to market products to women and young girls

Red:

Movement, excitement and passion Encourages appetite, often used by fast-food chains Increases heart rate, creates urgency, often seen in clearance sales Immediately pulls focus

Orange:

Courage, confidence, friendliness and success Stimulates logic and promotes enthusiasm Creates a call to action – subscribe, buy or sell Used to draw in impulsive buyers

Yellow:

Optimism and youth Increases cheerfulness Often used to grab the attention of window shoppers

Green:

Health, nature, money and wealth Stimulates harmony in the brain, often used to promote environmental issues Encourages balance between body and emotions, which leads to decisiveness The easiest colour for the eye to process, frequently used in stores to create a sense of relaxation

Blue:

Peace, tranquility and reliability Curbs appetite and stimulates productivity Creates the sensation of trust and security, often seen with banks and businesses Preferred by men

Purple:

Royalty, wisdom and respect Stimulates creative problem solving Represents imaginative and wise brands, services or products Used to soothe and calm, often seen in beauty or anti-aging products

White:

Associated with purity, cleanliness and safety Heightens creativity, offers a clean slate

Grey:

Practicality, timelessness and solidity Used too frequently, it can lead to feelings of nothingness

Black:

Authority, power, stability and strength Often a symbol of intelligence Used to trim down the sizes of items Powerful and sleek, used to market luxury products

Contrast:

Choosing a colour scheme where the focal point is the brightest element of the design reduces eyestrain and immediately focusses a user’s attention Choosing stark, complementary colours creates an easy to read area

Vibrancy:

Dictates emotion Brighter colours create more energy and evoke a response or reaction Neutral or darker colours allow a reader to process large chunks of information

 

Pyschology of colour

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