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  1. #1
    SitePoint Zealot ~kev~'s Avatar
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    Do bright colored websites get more return traffic?

    What do you think, bright colors or dark colors are best for return traffic? Or does it really matter?

    My son has a dark colored wordpress theme. He said he wanted it to be a dark color, but I think it might be affecting his return traffic.

    Website A - lots of dark colors

    Website B - lots of bright colors

    From your experience, which type (bright or dark colors) is going to get the most return traffic?

  2. #2
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    I would be interested to know the scientific answer to this as for me personally it doesn't matter what the site colours are - well not consciously anyway.

    Why not conduct a trial - 3 months light colours and 3 months dark and see what the returns are.
    Mike Swiffin - Community Team Advisor
    Only a woman can read between the lines of a one word answer.....

  3. #3
    SitePoint Wizard drhowarddrfine's Avatar
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    The one with the best content.

  4. #4
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    Returning vistors return because of value the site adds, if they cant read the site due to the contrast of the colors is too high or low, that would be the only factor i could see being a major issue. unless we are talking e-commerce then we are on a whole other level

  5. #5
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    if there is no adequate content, colors will not matter I think. If you have a good and pleasing content it will make enough traffic for you, but also it's good to have bright colors...

  6. #6
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    i would think that content driven sites will have a higher return rate if it is dark text on a light background rather than the other way round... this doesn't specifically meet your question of bright or dark colours per se but i think that it is more traditional, going back to printed text and paper, for content to be delivered in such a manner. Subconciously i think this makes it easier to read / view the content and therefore an easier/better experience for the end user???

    no proof of this tho, just my chain of thought!

  7. #7
    Object Not Found junjun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spikeZ View Post
    Why not conduct a trial - 3 months light colours and 3 months dark and see what the returns are.
    Good idea, although for an A/B split test you might want to do them at the same time

  8. #8
    SitePoint Zealot Crey_Design's Avatar
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    In terms of color theory, I don't know how much darker versus lighter has to do with people's reaction as opposed to the color being used.

    Good color use may keep a person from bouncing, but ultimately, the quality of the content and the site overall will keep a person there.
    Chris Reynolds
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  9. #9
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    JeffWalden's Avatar
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    You could always use Google Optimizer and see which one seems to respond better.
    TAKE A WALK OUTSIDE YOUR MIND.

  10. #10
    SitePoint Enthusiast aldomatic's Avatar
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    I would be interested in seeing some results for this. We do A/B testing for our PPC campaigns, and we have not done anything like this.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by aldomatic View Post
    I would be interested in seeing some results for this. We do A/B testing for our PPC campaigns, and we have not done anything like this.
    For the extra effort that it takes to do A/B campaigns do you find the data worth it?
    TAKE A WALK OUTSIDE YOUR MIND.

  12. #12
    whagwan? silver trophybronze trophy akritic's Avatar
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    I couldn't agree more with Crey_Design.

    The colour scheme of your site should match with the demographic of your audience, and should not be too extreme to turn visitors away from the content. Consider PerezHilton for example, and take any Tech blog. Both are targeting certain visitors and cater for those tastes in the sites colour.

  13. #13
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    I think that as long as the colors don't contradict the tone or the message of the content overall, and they don't interfere with being able to read the content....it doesn't matter too much. For instance, for a movie like the Matrix, it is appropriate to have white text against black screen, and that in way keeps me going to their main page every now and then, because it is like plugging into the matrix. But for a self-help resource I wouldn't stay too long if it were white against black, that would just be weird and twisted in my opinion.

    I'm sure there are numerous psychological trends in how people respond subconsciously to color schemes, but that would be a long and extensive project that might not get done (well, let's hope some researcher or web designer would take it up and do a cross-study).

  14. #14
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    On that note, do you think a website such as mine (groupacumen [dot] com) is difficult to read? I'm always a little worried when I use a dark background with light text but I think it looks okay this time.

    Other opinions?
    TAKE A WALK OUTSIDE YOUR MIND.

  15. #15
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    What bsccom said

    I think, Which is just a theory lol.. That as long as your site is aesthetically pleasing, It doesn't matter the color tones. GRANTED im sure some guys might not like a pink site with bunnys on it.

    That's why i made like 9 colors on my site lol, Pink and purple being two of them.

    What I'm seeing in this thread though is people confusing colors and design, You can make a trendy hot-topic-ish Layout with ANY color

    P.S. To above, I like ur font colors fine, but if i were you id darken the content font JUST a tad. but thats morep ersonal preference, i HATE sharp contrast when reading, On white background i use dark grey, and light grey on dark backgrounds

  16. #16
    Now available in Orange Tijmen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bwccom View Post
    I'm sure there are numerous psychological trends in how people respond subconsciously to color schemes,
    I had a bit of that when I was still studying, one of the more interesting things that I learned was that the color yellow makes people hungry. Just look around in the mac/burger king etc, and it all makes sense why theres always something yellow around.
    Travel Photos on Flickr - Twitter

    “Never give up. Never surrender”

  17. #17
    SitePoint Guru cyjetsu's Avatar
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    Yeh the more different colors you have on your site, the more traffic you get. It's a secret search engine optimization technique called rainbow overkill.

    However, if you live in reality, then no, color schemes have no direct effect on traffic. If the website looks good, it might possibly get more traffic, but traffic depends on content anyway and a good looking website can have different amounts of colors depending on the style of design. Some minimal design sites with almost no color are very good looking.


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