Button Color: Why it Matters

Button Color: The Myth

There is a lot of information going around the internet about how the button color you choose for your “Call to Action” (CTA) button will effect your conversion rating. While there is some truth to this statement, there is no one color that will magically increase your sales. The sayings “don’t use red, it is a stop color,” or “green means go” or more wives tales than actual fact. Instead it is more important to note certain colors psychology, what colors your target market prefer and what the color scheme of your website consists of. First let us break down some of the psychology behind color.


Yellow is often the color associated with youth and optimism. This color works very well when trying to sell children’s items and is often used in retail world to grab the attention of window shoppers. 


While often mislabeled a “stop” color red is used for a much different purpose in the retail world. Red is often used to energize and create a sense of urgency from shoppers. You will notice most clearance signs in stores are red; this creates an energetic atmosphere of “buy me now!”


Trust and security are what blue can bring to the table. Naturally, this is the color that is almost universally used by banks and large businesses. Blue is also widely used in the medical world to makes clients and patients feel at ease. 


Whether your are living in the wilderness or a five star mansion, green is a color that may speak to you. Green is known to be the color of wealth and relaxation, but can also be used, heavily, to market natural or earthly items. 


Do it now! Orange is often used as a Call to Action color and is aggressive in nature. Orange is found to have the best conversion rates when retailers are trying to get their customers to act quickly. 


A very unique color, pink, is almost always gender specific. Pink works very well when trying to market products to romantics, young girls and women. 


When your product is sleek, sexy and luxurious this is the color to use. Black and silver are the colors of fine living and powerful innovation.


Take step back and revitalize with purple. This color is used to soothe & calm the customer and is very often used in the beauty world to market product.


The short answer is do not ever use this color. This color is boring and often blends in to the background. 


Knowing your Audience

Another thing to consider when deciding what color to use, is your target audience. Different niches will naturally respond better to specific color pallets.

Men: Colors They Like
  • Blue
  • Green
  • Black
Men: Colors They Don’t
  • Brown
  • Orange
  • Purple
Women: Colors They Like
  • Blue
  • Purple
  • Green
Women: Colors They Don’t
  • Orange
  • Brown
  • Silver
Impulse Shoppers
  • Blue
  • Orange 
  • Black
Budget Shoppers
  • Blue 
  • Green
Baby Boomers
  • Pink
  • Blue
  • Burgandy

Stand Out from the Crowd

Most importantly your CTA should stand out from the rest of your page. If your page is predominately blue you may consider placing a yellow or red button on your page to create a diversity that will catch your customers eye. The most important thing is to make it easy for your customer to find that magical button that provides them the merchandise they want and lines your pockets in the process!


Advanced Concepts: Beyond Color

In order to take your conversion to the next level you will need a little more than just color psychology. You will need to not only get inside your customers head to decipher what they want, but to make your page feel as personalized to them as possible.


You vs ME

In one case study conducted, a reputable website was able to increase conversion, by 90%, simply by changing button language from “Start your free 30 day trial” to “Start my free 30 day trial.” The important thing to note here is that even minor changes on your page can have massive impact on your sales. Mission critical elements like CTA buttons represent small changes you can make to your page, that have major impact on the decision making of your potential customers. The advantage that “my” has over “your” is that it give the illusion that the trial already belongs to the customer and is a tangible object they possess. All the user has to do now is choose to use something they already own.


Relevant Information

Another case study details how conversion was increased 213% by making the button more relevant to their customers. The study was involving a gym membership and changed the CTA from “get your membership” to “Find your gym & get membership.” Note here that the study replaced a generic CTA with a button more tailored to their users needs. The new CTA focuses more on what you are going to get rather than what you need to do to obtain it. In this example you have taken the guess work out and created a full servite Call to Action.


Applying Concepts

Taking the information from both groups, we can start to put together a very effective conversion system. The important thing is not to get carried away in either aspect by keeping a calm, uniform feel to your landing page. Avoid color explosions on your page as well as buttons that read more like a novel rather than a Call to Action. By using language that your customers will understand and appreciate, along with vibrant colors that speak to them, your conversion ratings will steadily begin to climb!









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2 Comments. Leave new

Barry Richardson
July 13, 2015 12:02 pm

It’s interesting to see that both men and women don’t like orange, yet Amazon uses orange for their call-to-action buttons. They must surely have a reason for doing that.


Barry, Orange is a major impulse color. Orange converts best when you are attempting to get the consumer to purchase immediately. The way amazon is structured this plays out very well for them.


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