The Psychology of Colours in retail Signage

It’s no secret that the retail industry uses well-researched psychology to coax us into buying more and more in their stores…and it works! Every industry does it, even supermarkets. There’s so much that contributes to the way we buy, including customer service, shop temperature, lighting, mirror placement, down to whether the music is loud, quiet, relaxing or geared to pump you up.

When it comes to advertising methods, signage plays a huge role. Again, there are many factors that come into play here: the size and placement of the sign, and a myriad more. One of the most important factors is the colour of the sign itself. This can convey a message and influence the mood of the buyer, which can translate into sales. Here we have a look at the effects different colours can evoke with signage.


White conjures up images of purity and innocence, peace, tranquillity, freshness and goodness. This colour is often seen in signage in jewellery or bed stores. It can also be used for writing on a black sign to create a dramatic contrast, or with a red background for a sale sign.


Black is associated with power, formality, elegance, style, wealth and class. It can be used as a dramatic backdrop in high-end shop signage, and goes with any colour to convey an array of moods.


In nature, red signifies danger and thus is the most eye-catching colour to the human eye. When it comes to psychology, however, red symbolises passion, love, energy, power and strength. This bold colour is useful for important signage, and can be highly effective to draw attention when it comes to “sale” or “discount” signs.


The colour of the sun’s rays! Yellow represents joy, happiness, energy, fun, youthfulness and intelligence. It’s a great mood booster, and is up there when it comes to eye-catching colours. Yellow can work well with colourful lettering in signs for schools, kindergartens, children’s clothing, craft or toy shops, or other retail associated with youth.


Associated with freshness, nature, the environment and health, green is a versatile and feel-good colour. It can be used in signage for health food shops, juice bars, environmental companies, outdoor stores, and much more.


Blue is the colour of royalty, loyalty, wealth, wisdom, creativity, truth and intelligence. Blue is said to be an appetite suppressor, so should be avoided in signage for the food industry. Being a versatile colour, blue can be used for a number of different industries, depending on the shade used.

At Sudden Signs, we can help you with all your signage needs. We do real estate signs and retail signs, as well as posters, labels and stickers. Have a look at what we can do for you, or get in touch with us to get your signage sorted today!