“What business color should I use?”
It’s one of the most common questions I hear. And I understand why it’s daunting. With millions of available choices, where should you even start?
In today’s post I’m going to share five techniques for choosing business colors, plus a free tool you can use as a reference whenever you need to create a color palette.
1. Think two baby steps
I recommend choosing two main colors first. It’s easier to communicate your business brand if you use two colors consistently in all your marketing materials.
Companies and organizations have been doing this for years. Everyone from sports teams to corporations represent themselves with two business colors.
When you’ve got two colors to choose from, you just have to answer the question “should I use color A or color B?” This makes setting up your web pages and print material easy-peasy.
2. Use a color wheel as your guide to find your best business color
The first thing to understand about color is that exists on a spectrum, and each color has a relationship with the others. To understand these relationships, let’s take a look at two color wheels.
Color wheels help you decide which colors you’d like to try experimenting with. You can use this screen image, or download the “Color Confusion Resolved” PDF I’ve created for you.
For an interactive tool that will help you choose exact colors, try using the tips here with Canva’s on-screen color wheel.
The left color wheel shows colors that move from darker in the middle to having progressively more white added to the pure color on the outside ring. The right color wheel is lighter in the middle, and the outer ring colors have more black added to them.
Use the three concepts below as a guide when you’re choosing two colors from these color wheels.
3. Opposites attract
That’s great if you’re looking for a high-energy color combination. If you want something more soothing to the eyes, choose colors using the “Next-Door Neighbors” technique below.
To tone down your opposite colors, try choosing hues from the parts of the color wheel that have added black or white. You’ll still have a high-energy combination, but it won’t be jarring to the eyes.
4. Next-door neighbors get along
These colors have so much in common they look great next to each other and blend well.
Your colors are guaranteed to look balanced and well-matched when you choose color “neighbors.”
5. When it comes to business color, compatibility counts
Whether you choose color “neighbors” or try color opposites, your combinations will look best if they’re located on the same “rings” of the color wheel.
Colors along the same “rings” have similar amounts of white or black added to the pure color. This will help them blend well when you use them together.
Ready to dive in and start choosing colors? Read this post for some online tools for choosing colors.
I’d love to see what you come up with. Most of the online tools will allow you to save your color palette — feel free to post a link in the comments so I can take a peek and provide feedback if you’d like it.
Harness the power of your business colors to create stunning visual marketing
Want your brand to be recognized and remembered?
Plug in to the power of images! They communicate fast. And guess what? You can create beautiful branded images all by yourself — even if you’re not a designer.
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