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The Conversion-Driven Psychology of Color

Marketing is all about motivating someone to take action. Often, that action necessitates a behavior change. Since there have been things to sell, brands have been leveraging the power of color to sell them.

Color does a lot of heavy lifting in many different ways. Emotions like anger can be shown through red. Behaviors like hunger can be elicited from yellow or orange. They can showcase values like green for eco-friendlessness. They can even represent gender, like blue for boys. Some brands have even trademarked parts of their palette to ensure that specific color always evokes immediate brand recognition, along with the feeling they want their brand to convey. Whether you’re building a brand or improving the UX design of a website, the psychology behind color can be a powerful tool in your arsenal when designing for action.

That’s why we put together our newest infographic, the Conversion Psychology of Color, to cover the fundamental facts of color psychology that every marketer needs to understand and implement into their creative campaigns.

Download the Conversion Psychology of Color infographic here. 

Color in Action: How to leverage in Design and Marketing

Every brand starts with the basic building blocks, which include the creation of the brand’s color palette. 

The basis of color theory (the practical guide to color mixing and color combinations) is psychological. The focus on harmony instead of chaos helps to create a balanced experience for the user that is engaging but not over-stimulating. 


A brand usually has a set of primary colors, then expands out to secondary and tertiary. Guidelines establish the uses of these colors, such as type, logo, or accent. How important is a color to a brand? Well, some studies say that color increases brand recognition by 80%. 

Let’s try a little exercise.

  • What do you think of when you hear “golden arches?” 
  • How about robin egg blue? 
  • What lingerie brand do you think of when I write pink? 

So, it’s pretty safe to say color is of the utmost importance to a brand. However, things become a little more complicated when expanding beyond brand to the best color to use for a CTA.

Conversion and Color

There is much subjectivity at play when it comes to the color of CTAs. Some studies insist on green, while others point to red as the go-to standout for motivating clicks. So if these are the two colors that we have to choose from, what happens to those companies that have neither in their palette? 

The most important thing is that the color of your CTAs stands out. It must be the dominant color on the webpage, ad, or landing page. From there, it can be an exercise in A/B testing to see which color performs best for your industry and space. This valuable exercise can have big rewards; changing the color of a CTA to a more effective choice can increase conversion rates by upwards of 34%. This can have massive sale implications to your bottom line in an industry where every click counts. 

Testing can also help determine action hierarchy if there is more than one action a user can take on a page. Once a color is determined for an action, you must use it consistently throughout the user experience. 


How to Design for Behavior and Motivate Action

Discovering the power of color is the best start to a journey toward behavioral design, the theory of how design can shape or influence human behavior. Or, as we call it at Overdrive, action-oriented creative: designing explicitly for the behavior we want our audience to take right now. 

Start your path by downloading The Conversion Psychology of Color infographic, which features fundamental statistics on the psychology of color, agreed-upon meanings of popular colors, and how to leverage these colors in your creative campaigns. 

Access the Conversion Psychology of Color here and feel free to share with your network or on your website. Our only request, please link back to this page.

Ready to take your marketing to the next level by leveraging Overdrive’s best practices for encouraging desired behavior? Contact us today to see how we can help you move the needle.


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