Understanding How Color Psychology Sells

Retailers, this one’s for you:

If there’s one thing that grammar school taught us, it’s that colors play an important role in everyday life and as we have grown up, this still remains true. Whether it’s walking outside to see your neighborhood, going shopping for a new wardrobe or simply hanging out on the couch watching Netflix, colors stand out to us and give us meaning and emotion. We are talking about Color Psychology – or the study of hues as a determinant of human behavior.

Ok, colors are cool, so what?

Well, lets say you’re a shop owner. When prospective clients first walk into your store what do you think is the first thing they noticed? If you didn’t guess colors, did you even read the title of this blog? No, but in all seriousness, your prospective customers make a subconscious judgment about their current retail environment and products within 90 seconds. Yes, you read that right, 90 seconds. And how much of that impression do you think is based on color alone? Let me give you a hint, it’s the same number (90%). If that’s not scary enough, half of shoppers say they won’t even return to a store if they don’t like its aesthetics. Furthermore, a 90% of purchasing decisions are based on visual appearance, with 85% of consumers saying that color was a primary reason of purchasing a product. So yeah, colors are cool but they’re also important, and understanding color psychology can have a major impression on your sales.

What colors are best for your business?

Start by considering your brand goals and targets. For example, research from Shopify reports that women respond more favorably to blue, green and purple and dislike brown, grey and orange. On the other hand, men tend to gear more towards blue, green and black, while responding negatively to brown, orange and purple. Once you establish who your target audience is, it is easier to choose colors that will appeal to them.

The following is an interesting summary of a report done by Marketo, in which they have researched how brand colors can affect your business. Based on the business brand you want to uphold, this color reports can help you successfully execute your brand identity.

Color Psychology Outline


Black is used by those who wish to communicate “classic sophistication” and is often associated with expensive or upscale brands.

2 | BLUE

Blue is likely the most popular choice for colors. It is considered dependable, trustworthy, secure and responsible.


Brown is thought to be “earth-like”, natural and durable. The color speaks simplicity and strength and that’s why you see it more on environment-like business logos.


Green is synonymous with calm, freshness and health. Lighter shades of green communicate serenity and darker shades are associated with affluence.


Orange is full of life and excitement! It communicates fun, vibrancy and playfulness.

6 | RED

Red is the most passionate of all the colors. It is attention grabbing, energetic, provocative and even aggressive.


Purple is elegant, rich and sophisticated. It is associated with royalty, nostalgia, spirituality and even mystery.


White represents the cleanliness and “purity” of all the colors. Because of this, white is a popular color among healthcare business and organizations.


Yellow invokes lively feelings of hope and optimism. It’s brightness stimulates creativity and energy!

Color. Color. Color.

Whichever color you favor, or which ever color better fits your brand, remember it is important to implement it. You want your customers to be satisfied and feel like they can drop some money at your shop so don’t be afraid to work with a color scheme that will deliver all your brand has to offer!

So I’ll leave you with this: to all current business owners, have you looked at how your colors are affecting your business? To new business owners, don’t overlook it, colors are important!

Work cited:

Academia.edu, Colour, Colour Everywhere…In Marketing Too, Rohit Vishal Kumar and Radhika Joshi