We all grew up singing the song "Red, orange, green and blue, shiny yellow purple too" which introduced us to our first taste of colors. With regard to website design, colors play an extremely important role. Colors allude to a certain atmosphere and are extremely useful when trying to create a specific mood. Though the emotions that arise can be subjective, there are some colors that universal meaning.

Colors found in the red section of the color wheel such as red, orange, and yellow are known as warm colors. Warm colors tend to evoke passionate emotions ranging from feelings of warmth and comfort to an atmosphere of cold, anger and hostility. Colors found in the blue section of the wheel are referred to as cool colors and include the shades of blue, purple, and green. These colors are calming colors, evoking emotions of the soothing rise and fall of the ocean waves, yet sometimes bring to mind feelings of sadness, loneliness or indifference.

When designing a website the first step is to decide what atmosphere you would like to project. Red symbolizes something passionate, vibrant, or urgent, and has even been linked to a physical increase in heart rate! If that sounds too extreme you may want to try a more orangey shade. When announcing a special or a sale it maybe useful to implement one of the warm colors to bring attention to the promotion. Using one of the calming colors for a background design will lend a sophisticated and professional atmosphere to your landing page! People are naturally inclined to read further into an eye appealing design.

White and black are wonderful colors when used as a complement. Alone, white gives off a feeling of emptiness and blank confusion. Black is a powerful color and adds a sharp touch to a beautiful design.

Color also assist in brand awareness. You can spot the traditional solid brown of a UPS truck or uniform from a block down or reach for Coke's classic red bottle with your eye's half shut. Who doesn't miss the blue and yellow Walmart signs replaced by the brown family? Colors seep into our consciousness and improves our recognition of favored products. Whether you are building your website from scratch or redesigning an active site consider your choice of colors to create the appropriate atmosphere.