Using Color For Business

A lot goes into creating a brand for your business. From concept, typeface, images, and shapes, color is probably the last thing you want to think about. It may be tempting to just use your favorite color, but is it appropriate. Each color conveys a different meaning and effect on your customers. They reflect the nature of your business and how you want your brand to appeal to your target market. Consider the meaning behind what colors you are using for your business when creating your brand.


White is the manifestation of the presence of all colors. This is a very positive color. In most cultures, it suggests purity, health, cleanliness, and innocence. White can be paired with most colors. It can also be used to bring mental clarity and to clear clutter. It is also important to use white space to allow other colors and patterns to stand out. Most businesses use white as the background for their websites. It is also ideal for infant’s products, kitchen and bath appliances, and other organizations that wan to portray efficiency and discipline.


Positive meanings of white in business:

  • Cleanliness
  • Innocence
  • Goodness
  • Calmness
  • Simplicity
  • Efficiency


Too much white can mean:

  • Emptiness
  • Dullness



Black creates an air of mystery and secrecy. It is also a fairly conservative and serious color. Black can evoke competence, elegance, and professionalism. Black is used for selling and marketing to young audiences. Music industries like to use it to portray style and trendiness.


Positive connotations of black in business:

  • Authority
  • Formality
  • Sophistication


Too much black can mean:

  • Depression
  • Control
  • Withholding
  • Sadness


If you want to envoke a similar feeling without using black or white, grey is another option. Grey is formal and natural. It is a popular secondary color and a popular color for negative spaces. Grey is a very safe and neutral color. It can be used for legal and financial industries as well as for creating a hi-tech look.


Blue is conservative and calming. If you need to give a feeling of peace and solitude, use this color. It opens the flow of communication and opens the mind to new ideas. Darker shades are more serious than lighter ones. Most conservative corporate businesses have blue in some form in their logos, business cards, and brochures. Communication, Hi-tech, computer products, water industry, swimming pools, and cleaners always use blue. Health, wellness, and travel typically use light blue while political and religious institutions tend to use dark blue.


Positive meanings of blue in business:

  • Honesty
  • Responsibility
  • Reliability
  • Tranquility


Too much blue can:

  • Reduce appetites (Be wary when using for food-related business)



Red catches peoples attention. It stimulates the senses as an energetic and passionate color. Red also increases enthusiasm and interest. For your business cards, red can excite your customers and move them to act on your offer. A red background for a business card is a bold choice, but it will stand out among a set of cards. However, normally red needs to be handled carefully. You do not want your prospective consumers to feel overwhelmed, but you want to command and encourage movement. Use red as an accent color. A touch of red can help portray your business as energy-driven and exciting.


Positive meanings of red in business:

  • Passion
  • Action
  • Confidence


Too much red can mean:

  • Anger
  • Danger
  • Aggression



No other color symbolizes growth and freedom better than green. Green gives a feeling of protection from fears and a desire for change. It is used to advertise safety in drugs and medicines. It is also used to represent the environment. Green itself represents nature and prosperity. It is recommended for businesses that have to do with health and healing. Dark green is a good color for conservative businesses, like financial businesses, while bright/lime green is good to create a buzz about upcoming sales and products.

Positive meaning of green in business:

  • Environment- friendliness
  • Wealth
  • Growth
  • Emotional Balance


Orange is an overwhelmingly positive color. It is associated with optimism and cheerfulness. Orange is for people who are sincere, and thoughtful, but also means creativity and vitality. This color is more approachable, friendlier, and less aggressive than red. Orange can spice things up and provide relief from too serious situations. That being said, orange can also be too loud when used in excess. For business, orange works well for crafty or artsy professionals.


Positive meanings of Orange in business:

  • Adventure
  • Spontaneity
  • Affordability
  • Creativity
  • Travel


Too much orange can be:

  • Loud
  • Frivolous



Yellow is another positive color. It envokes enthusiasm, logic, and playfulness. Yellow is recommended for people in the children’s industry. The colors meanings include stimulation, creativity, and wisdom. It is a good promotional color if you want to grab your customer’s attention quickly. Yellow also stimulates decision making and communication, making it great for networkers and entertainers.  Many fast food restaurants use yellow and red together. Red encourages people to eat more, while yellow encourages them to move quickly. Avoid yellow for luxury items, unless it is gold, or it will be perceived as unsophisticated.

Positive meanings of Yellow in business:

  • Eagerness
  • Interest
  • Spirit
  • Wisdom

Too much use of yellow may denote:

  • Anxiety
  • Criticism
  • Ill Health/Disease