Psychology in Web Design

6 min readOct 3, 2019

The web design process is a complex and often underestimated part of any web development project. The novice does not put much thought into the creation of a website. However, with the backing of professionals, a web design agency tends to play a significant role in the way people perceive and react to a website.

A good website design attracts more visitors to a website and raises the website's importance and credibility. A bad, not thought-out design only diminishes its purpose and serves no good to the business. Good web designs come from well-thought-out page layouts, carefully picked colors and typefaces, and well-structured unique content. This logical process is often called the psychology of web design. Many web designers begin to design their websites by employing psychological concepts to influence their customers on a deeper, psychological level. The psychological impact is reflected in some crucial web design elements like color, page layout, typefaces, and content.

Image Credit: 10BestDesign


Choosing a website color is one of the essential parts of web design. Color can be a robust tool that will significantly impact the website's visitors. The colors that web designers choose help set up the customers' emotions and mood towards a website. There are thousands of colors and, therefore, millions of color combinations. Each color has a different emotional impact on a human being and has another purpose of use.

There are countless examples of colors' effects on people's feelings and emotions towards a website. For example, banks and social networks often use blue on their websites because most people associate blue with certain feelings such as trust, calmness, and loyalty. Another example of a color that creates a sense is red. Red displays power, importance, and energy. Many websites often use red to grab the customers' attention or highlight the importance of something on a web page. Some other examples of colors that have psychological effects on a person include orange, which provokes energy and friendliness, yellow often causes a feeling of happiness and enthusiasm.

Every color has its psychological effect on a human being. Web developers and web designers should always choose the colors for a website based on the message that a website conveys. The social network websites choose to have blue as their primary color because their goal is to convince their customers that these websites can be trusted. Similarly, the color red is used by web designers to emphasize the importance of a specific place or function on a website. Carefully selected colors create a particular emotional reaction from the customers and a significant design process component.

Page Layout:

Like other aspects of web design, page layout also has a significant role in web design. The page layout design involves organizing and arranging visual elements of text on a web page. Web designers can utilize human behavior's psychological patterns to better translate and communicate the website's main ideas to its visitors. After all, it's the page layout of a website that will guide visitors. Hence, web designers need to establish elements on web pages that lead the reader's eyes, guiding them to the vital component and message, for example, focusing on attention-grabbing titles on web pages, call-to-action, links, and buttons.

Research has shown that visitors on websites tend to look at a web page from top left to right, up and down, in a "Z" like pattern. This means that web designers should place important information at the top left, middle, and bottom right parts of the web page as these are the most common places where the visitors will look. Another example of how human psychology can be utilized in designing a page layout is blank space on the web page. Most people do not like to look at large blocks of text. Space should be used to create a visual break for the visitors. The intentionally designed blank space can lead the website visitors to a specific spot on a web page. One reason is that space will narrow down the areas on the page where the customers can look and show the right content. Any top web designer will have mastered this art and get this part checked off during the design process.

Designing the page layout while applying human behavior's psychological aspects is beneficial to the outcome. Professional web designers are careful when choosing the placement of the vital elements of a website. Different places throughout a web page have a distinct influence on a customer and need to be placed accordingly. Positioning the essential information in the areas that have a more substantial effect on people will increase the bounce rate and visitor retention.


A typeface, commonly known as a font, is a group of several fonts similar in design. These are an essential part of the psychology of web design and can evoke emotions and feelings and set up the tone for the text. Typefaces vary in size, shape, design, as well as purpose. There are thousands of typefaces, and each one is designed to be used for particular situations and spark a certain feeling. For instance, Serif typeface has a history primarily used in professional work fields, like law firms, news websites, and schools.

Research has shown typeface is associated with a certain feeling and mood. When people see a text with a Serif typeface, they feel that this text is essential or knowledgeable. On the other hand, the Sans-serif typeface provides a more modern and futuristic feeling. Different typefaces can also create a specific feeling or mood for the reader. Web designers use typefaces to create distinct emotions that they want customers to experience. After all, it's ensuring that visitors are connected and continue to explore and delve deeper into the website.

Unique Content:

A website's content is arguably the most crucial part of web design. Content is one of the customers' first things when they open a website. This includes numerous elements on a website, such as text, images, or videos. It is often expressed through blocks of text or multimedia. Unique content is a significant way for website customers to learn more about what the website offers. With Google search algorithms improving through AI, hiring content marketing professionals has become necessary. After all, not everyone is born a writer! Content does not seem too complicated, for it has any psychological connection to web design. Nevertheless, it has one of the most prominent roles in how customers perceive a website.

One of the most common mistakes that web designers make is that they have too much content or just too little. It is good to have well-populated web pages, but the content needs to be balanced—the best way to hire a content writer who will create unique content specific to the business. Unique content on any website will help page ranking and separate your website from the competition. A website with too much text could result in visitors immediately leaving. Large amounts of text tend to intimidate people because it is hard to find any information in large blocks of text. Web pages with too many images or other multimedia are not suitable for websites unless organized correctly.

Take Away on Web Design

Applying psychology aspects to web design is a must for any individual creating websites or thinking of designing. Using psychological logic during web designing will allow web developers to impact their customers. Careful planning and execution of web design's psychological aspects can guide customers to specific information or set up a website's mood and theme. Web design psychology is often applied through various website elements like color, page layout, typefaces, and content. Qualified and professional web developers always consider what effect they want the final website to have on visitors. Each element of an effective website's design serves as a support to the business. The strategic planning and utilization of psychology in web design help make the most effective and enjoyable design for a website while delivering the main goals. That is to attract visitors, retain them, and finally convert them into customers.

Remember, it takes a couple of seconds for website visitors to decide to stay on a website or not, and the psychology of a web design will help.




A Seattle web design and online marketing agency that delivers high-end websites. A passion for web development and SEO.