Wrong colour choices for stores. Mistakes to avoid when painting.

It is not uncommon to see wrong colour choices for stores. There are thousands of colours out there and manufacturers are coming out with more every year. So how is a store owner to decide what to avoid when painting a retail store? The big brands have a lot of money and budgets allocated, to study the effect certain colours have on their specific consumer’s buying habits. Their marketing campaigns and advertising are tied to the findings of these studies. The well known retailer shown in the picture above pays a lot of attention to their store colours. The good news is, there is a lot of basic colour psychology information easily available. The intent of this blog is to discuss certain obvious and not so obvious colour mistakes to avoid when painting a store.

Logo colours belong on signage and websites.

The colour of a brand is meant to look good on a business card, in print, or on company vehicles. When a company is creating it’s brand colours, the effect that it would have on the immediate buying public is at the most an afterthought. It should be used in areas where recognition and familiarity are important, such as signage, even back office sections of the store if you must. Not many of these (mostly primary) colours work well in the area where immediate buying decisions are made. The exception may be the very large brands, where the brand familiarity enhances the buying decision.

Don’t be personal.

Your favourite colours are usually not the colours that help consumers buy. They are usually wrong colour choices for stores and retail establishments. Leatrice Eiseman, the well known colour guru said:

Hating or loving a colour should not be a factor in whether or not it is in your line. Choosing the right colours is a business decision, and a lot of people get that wrong. It’s a pragmatic decision and your personal loves or hates should not come into it at all

Exactly. It is a business decision. The only reason a store exists is to make money. This means that you and your staff may be spending many hours a day in colours you don’t like.

Storefront retail paint job

Don’t scare your demographic away.

If you are only selling to teenagers, don’t decorate for senior citizens. Your marketing information will serve you well here. Make your target market feel at home. Keep them in your store longer. The more comfortable they feel, the more they will trust their purchasing decisions.

Don’t overdo the strong colours.

Red, yellow can be used to highlight a product, a store section, or a sale. These colours can have a powerfull effect on the buying decision if used wisely. They are mostly effective in attracting attention and that is the reason we use them in public places. The problem is, these colours can also irritate your customers if they are used excessively. Using different shades of red and yellow

Overpowering the product.

What are you selling? You want people to look at your products and your offerings, not at the strong colour of the walls. A few years ago, our painters were hired to paint a well known store in Markham. It was a local furniture store. There was furniture of outstanding quality, they were also selling artwork and other décor items. The problem was, their walls were covered in dark colours, of mostly outdated wallpaper. We ended up removing wallpaper for weeks from that store, but the effect it had on the look of the store was significant.

There are of course many ways to use strong colours in stores. Creating themes around a special or a new product is one of them. Strong colours can evoke the feeling of rivers and oceans, blue skies and green fields. Emerald and gold décor for example can dramatize a display area. More often than not, moderation is the key for using such colours. Staying away from colour mistakes is good business.

Ecopainting is a Toronto area Painting Contractor. Retail store painting is one of our commercial painting services we offer. Please contact us at 416 733-7767 to discuss painting your store. Certified colour consultants are also available.

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