When you’re building your website, you want it to be visually appealing and on-brand. But you also want it to drive results.
Website conversion is one of the most important aspects of designing your brand’s digital real estate. When you design with conversion in mind, you can dramatically increase the number of website visitors that convert into customers. And a huge part of website conversion design? Choosing the right colors.
In this article, we take a deep dive into how to use color for website conversions (and drive serious results from your website in the process):
Why color is so important—and how it impacts conversions
Before we jump into how to use color for website conversions, let’s talk about why color is so important in the first place.
Color psychology is the study of the way color influences people’s thoughts, feelings, emotions, and behaviors and according to color psychology principles, different colors can create very different thoughts, feelings, emotions, and behaviors in your audience.
For example, featuring a red CTA button on your sales page is going to have a completely different impact than using blue or purple. And similarly, a green banner ad is going to drive different results than that same ad with a yellow or red background.
The point is, when you understand the psychology of color, you can use color to sway your audience and directly influence how they interact with your brand—and that includes inspiring specific behaviors that help you drive conversions from your website. In fact, color is so powerful that one recent case study found that choosing the right colors can increase conversions by up to 24%.
Color can help you convert your website visitors—and it can also help you convert your audience on Instagram. Choose your colors and design posts that are sure to #instaconvert with Canva’s social graphics templates, like the Yellow Caper Illustration Yard Sale Instagram Post or the Blue Beach Instagram Post.
Factors to consider when choosing colors to drive conversions
Now that you know why choosing the right colors is so important, let’s talk about what, exactly, you need to keep in mind when you’re doing the choosing.
What’s your branding?
Not every color is going to work for every brand, even if it’s a color that’s known to convert. So, before you choose what colors to use on your website to drive conversions, it’s important to consider who you are as a brand.
For example, red is a color with a reputation for driving serious conversions. But if you run a baby clothing company and your entire website is decked out in pastel pinks and blues, a bright red might mess with your branding—and actually cause conversions to tank. Or if red is a prominent color in your brand color palette and you already have a lot of red in your website design, choosing red for your CTA buttons might not stand out enough to convert.
The point is, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to using color for website conversions. The first step to determine which colors will convert best for your brand is to look at your existing branding and then figure out which colors are going to convert with that branding as a backdrop.
Designing your brand is the first step to building a high-converting website—and designing your logo is the first step to building your brand. Get started with one of Canva’s logo templates, like the Blue Truck Industrial Logo or the Pink Mandala Massage Logo.
What audience/demographic are you targeting?
When it comes to conversions, not all colors are created equal. The colors that are going to convert best with your audience is going to depend on who your audience actually is.
For example, the best conversion colors for millennial females are probably going to differ from the best conversion colors for baby boomers. The colors that are going to convert a new parent are probably going to be different from the colors that are going to convert men headed into retirement. If you’re targeting customers in the US, your colors might have a different cultural association (and therefore convert differently) than if you were targeting customers in Australia or Germany or Russia.
The point is, if you want your website to convert, it’s important to understand your audience and how different colors are going to impact that audience. The more you know about your audience and how they interact with different colors, the better choices you can make for the different elements of your website design—and the better your website will convert as a result.
No matter what kind of audience you’re after, you need to actually get them to your website in order to convert them—and one of the best ways to drive traffic to your website? Web ads. Design the ideal ad for your audience and get them to your website with one of Canva’s web ad templates, like the Red Black Friday Discount Medium Rectangle Ad or the Colorful Black Friday Discount Medium Rectangle Ad.
How are you converting your audience?
As mentioned, when it comes to conversions, not all colors are created equal—but neither are conversion methods. How you’re planning to convert your audience is a key element in figuring out which colors are going to give you the most conversion bang for your buck.
For example, the color you use in a pop-up to convert website visitors into email subscribers might not be the best color to get people to make a purchase off your product page. The ideal color for getting your audience to click a sale banner might not be the most effective for upselling them on their shopping cart.
The key is to identify how and where you’re converting your audience—and then choose the colors that are going to be most effective for that particular conversion method.
But what, exactly, are those colors? Again, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to choosing colors for website conversion, but here are some best practices you’ll definitely want to keep in mind:
The definition of converting your audience is getting them to take a specified action. And the only way they’re going to know what action to take is if you tell them clearly.
Call-to-action (CTA) buttons are a conversion staple. Not only do they feature text that tells your audience what to do, but when you use the right color, they jump off the screen, grabbing your audience’s attention and dramatically increasing the chance that they take your desired action (and convert as a result).
There’s no single color that’s guaranteed to convert, but if you’re including a call-to-action button in your website design, red is definitely a solid choice. In fact, one recent study found that simply changing a CTA button from green to red increased conversions by an impressive 34%.
If you want to drive conversions, you need to look for every opportunity to include a relevant call-to-action—and that includes your Facebook cover image. Design a Facebook cover that converts your audience with one of Canva’s Facebook cover templates, like the Lime Green Lined Pet Cat Facebook Cover or the Fruits Photo Collage Food Facebook Cover.
Banners Banners are a great way to call attention to a specific message.
For example, if you run an e-commerce site, you can use a banner to let your website visitors know you’re having a major sale—and then include a CTA to click on the banner to go check out the sale items.
When it comes to choosing a color to increase your banner conversions, it’s less about choosing a specific color and more about making sure it stands out from your overall website design.
Banners are an opportunity to immediately grab your website visitors attention and drive them to action as soon as they land on your site. But if your banner doesn’t stand out (and, instead, blends in with the rest of your website design), you’re visitors are more likely to skip over it—and your conversions will flounder as a result.
Make sure there’s enough contrast in your banner colors so it immediately jumps out at your audience—and entices them to click.
Not every person that visits your website is going to immediately become a customer. But if you want to drive the best results from your website, you still need to convert those visitors—and that’s where email signups come in.
Your email list is one of the most powerful tools in your marketing tool belt. Once you have someone’s email address, you can continue to engage with them and eventually convert them into loyal customers. But first, you need to get them to sign up for your email list.
With your email form, you need to create a sense of visual contrast so the CTA button will pop. You can use different shades of the same color (like pale green and dark green), complementary colors (blue and orange), or colors that have such stark contrast, you can’t help but notice them (like a black button on a pale pink background).
Converting your website visitors into email subscribers is the first step. But once they’re subscribed, you need to keep them engaged with well-designed emails. Get started with one of Canva’s email newsletter templates, like the White and Black Minimalist Tropical Email Newsletter or the Teal and Grey Laptop Email Newsletter.
Color tips for maximizing conversions on your website
Need some more strategies for driving conversions on your website? Here are a few additional tips for using color for website conversions:
If you want to maximize your conversions and make sure you’re using the colors that convert at the highest level for your website, there’s no way around it—you need to split test.
What is split testing? With split testing, you would design two identical versions of your website; identical except for a single element—in this case, color. In version one you might have your CTA button in the color blue, while in version two your CTA button is red.
Then, drive traffic to each version of the website and see which performs better. Then, repeat the process with a different color until you have a version of your website that’s converting like crazy!
Choose colors that pop
When it comes to driving conversions, you don’t want to be subtle. The colors that have a tendency to convert best are the ones that pop.
Choose colors that are going to jump off the screen, grab your audience’s attention, and drive them to take action.
Only you can determine which colors are going to pop the most for you, but some conversion-friendly colors you’ll definitely want to consider include red (which inspires a sense of excitement), orange (which creates a sense of urgency), and black (which pops against lighter colors).
Choosing colors that pop is key to conversion. That’s true for your website, and it’s true for your Facebook ads. In order to convert, your Facebook ads need colors that are going to break through the clutter of their news feed and grab your audience’s attention. Design your own (with colors that pop, of course) with one of Canva’s Facebook ad templates like the Pink and Blue Rad Facebook Ad or the Pink and Yellow Fashion Facebook Ad.
Track your results
It doesn’t matter what colors you use on your website if you’re not crystal clear on how they’re performing and converting your customers, you’re not going to get the kind of results you’re looking for.
Whenever you test a new conversion strategy—including changing the colors of your CTA button, banner, or other design elements—it’s important to track your results to see how the strategy is performing. Make sure you have an analytics program set up so you can easily track how many of your website visitors are converting—and how that compares to the number of people who were converting before you made the change.
Get out there and use color to drive conversions on your website
When it comes to your website, color is one of the most powerful conversion tools at your disposal. And now that you know the psychology of color and how to choose the right colors to impact your audience, all that’s left to do is get out there and use color to start converting like crazy!