4 Tips for Intercultural Marketing: Web Design and Color Meaning in Foreign Countries

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Colors can achieve much in their effect on our psyche. They touch our senses, trigger certain emotions and influence our decisions. Put Company They are right, they strengthen brands and control buying impulses. But beware: Colors do not have the same meaning in all countries. 4 tips.

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Here writes for you:


Nelly Kostadinova InernationalizationNelly Kostadinova. Founder of Lingua-World, consultant and speaker.


Colors are internationally differently connoted

If your goal is to engage a global audience with your website and products, there may be some cultural stumbling blocks on your way to avoid them. Because, other countries mean different color preferences.

Internationally, colors are associated with certain properties and emotions, some of which are very different. Used incorrectly, they can, in the worst case, provoke negative emotional reactions. That is why the right color scheme for your company website is not to be underestimated.

Ensure market and target group-oriented response

Raise interest in the user by choosing colors that are tailored to the behavior and preferences of Internet users in the various foreign target markets.

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These should, according to the respective national understanding, fit to your industry and your products, or services.

4 tips against stumbling blocks in an international context

The following points show what different associations and reactions colors can evoke in website visitors in other countries, and how preferences differ from country to country. There are big differences, for example, between Asian and Western European websites.

1. quality products

If you want your product to be associated with quality and power on the website, the color scheme can vary greatly from country to country. In China, for example, the color black stands for power and quality. It is not a color of mourning as in our culture, but finds its use in professional contexts.

In neighboring South Korea, the color blue on the other hand symbolizes strength and quality and would be the optimal choice. It is generally a hugely popular color among the South Koreans. Blue stands for life and finds itself in the national flag again. Also at USCompany the color blue is a recurring element, especially in the IT sector, and stands for competence and knowledge.

2. Accent color Yes or No?

The Chinese and Japanese like colorful and bright colors on their websites. For the German eye, these pages are often overloaded and restless. But in Asia, too, there are again country-specific differences. The color red, for example, in the Chinese cultural area is clearly positively occupied. It symbolizes happiness and wealth and is very popular.

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In South Korea, on the other hand, the use of red should be avoided. The color can quickly be associated with it in the non-Communist state, and a person's name written in red signals that person's death. Even on German websites, the use of too much red has an alarming effect.

3. Color designs and their gradations

As already mentioned, Japanese and Chinese website users like colorful and bright colors. Also in India pages can be made more colorful, but with gradations. Here, internet users are particularly attracted to pastel and brown tones.

There are no necessarily avoidable colors for Indian websites and there is no need for a strict, uniform color design - but the user attaches great importance to a harmonious and aesthetic design of the site. Although colorful, the page should not look confusing. In South Korea, however, strong colors are rather unpopular. There, lighter background tones and softer colors are preferred on websites.

4. Create recognition features

The coloring on American websites is similar to that of Western European pages. Rather than using gaudy tones, website design relies more on the default color palette and emphasizes recognition features.

Certain colors associate the American Internet users with certain areas, such as the color blue with the area IT. American companies often refer to the color of their website to their company logos or their industry.

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Be aware of the different meanings of colors in foreign markets and assign the appropriate importance to the color of your website in an international context. Because a color that stands for hope and trust in one culture can mean exactly the opposite in another.

Inform yourself in advance with regard to color connotations and conventions and incorporate them country - specifically into the planning for your website - so that cultural stumbling blocks are easily avoidable. With the right color selection on the web, the users of the respective country feel addressed, become aware of you and linger on your pages. Your brand is positively documented.

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  1. Janett Lords

    Very nice site.

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