Wise use of color is an issue every professional webdesigner takes seriously. Each color means something, provokes a mood, and causes reactions. Not only that, the colors must work together well. They must not be too bright, or too depressing.
When I created my first site long ago I had a royal blue background with orange lettering. Do you think I got complaints about that? I sure did! Be careful what you put on your site if you expect people to read it. Nothing works quite so well as plain black lettering on white, though I sometimes vary the shade of the font so long as it remains pleasantly legible.
If you want to create a site that will be taken seriously and will look professional, you’ll soon learn that your best color is white. Lots of what we call ‘white space’ is appreciated by anyone who really wants to find information on your site. Look around you at what you see here. The green is an awesome highlight but the main color is white.
To maintain balance and ease the suffering of your site visitors, use no more than three colors, plus white. Fortunately there are lots of little software programs and websites that help webdesigners choose colors that work well together. The one I use is called Coffee Cup Color Schemer. You can download a trial version to use for 14 days.
Here are other color resources Iâ€™ve used while designing for the web:
Color Contrast Analyzer – a tool that checks foreground and background colors to determine if you’ll have good color visibility.
Visibone Webmaster’s Color Lab – online color chooser
Color Wheel Pro – color theory in action – software
Color Impact – color schemes at the click of a button, software to buy
Color Theory – learn more about color
Color Symbolism – using color for meaning
Behr Paint Colors – color picker
Color Test Results – survey on readability of color combinations
Color Combinations – contrast and suggestions
Worqx Color Overview – the study of color theory