Choosing Website Colours Part 3

web-safe coloursby Gail Breese


Creating websites that are attractive for visitors to view means using colour schemes that are harmonious and not jarring to the eye. 

But... are you sure that visitors are seeing the same colours as you? Colour schemes can involve a bit more work to make sure the effect you want your viewers to see is achieved. It's important to choose 'browser-safe' colours.

You versus your visitor...

While creating a website on your computer program and viewing it on your monitor, you will arrive at a pleasing combination of colours. But someone who clicks on your link and arrives at your home page could have a very different experience: the colours might not appear quite the same as how you view them on your monitor. For example, a lovely deep cherry red on your monitor screen could appear dark brown on someone else's.

We all have different systems - for example: we may use a Windows PC or a Mac, and we view websites with monitors of all sizes and resolutions, displaying different colours (i.e. 256 colours or more). These factors all add to the instability of a reliable colour outcome. 

Monitors create dots on the screen to display the elements on the page. When the website uses a colour that isn't native to that monitor, it tries to replicate it by dithering - that is, making some coloured dots one colour and others another colour. Usually this works well enough but at other times - it just doesn't work!

Basically, keeping your colour combination simple will help to avoid colour disasters. The more colours you use, the more problematic your design could be. Also, remember the combination and percentage of colours - that is, one colour for the background and/or large elements, and a smaller amount of a contrast colour for other page design elements.

You can't make your website colour scheme exactly the same for every viewer, but using a web safe colour chart to source your choices will make for a more reliable outcome.  website colour card

Click the link below to see the full version of this hex colour chart image.

I also found a great interactive colour wheel that helps you choose the perfect web safe colour you want:

Copyright (C) Gail C Breese



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