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  • Writer's pictureJP Favre

Why Your Dashboard Needs less Color Than a Unicorn Barfing a Rainbow ?

Well hello there, fellow dashboarding enthusiasts!

As a Data Artist, I've seen my fair share of dashboards that make me want to cry rainbow tears (not in a good way). And let me tell you, color plays a HUGE role in the success (or failure) of a dashboard design.

Sure, you could stick with the default palette and call it a day. But where's the fun in that? Using color strategically can make your dashboard pop like a confetti cannon, while also improving usability and user experience. i am not a big fan of using brand color extensively in a dashboard. Of course, i would always have some reference point but not that much.

First of all, let's address the elephant in the room. Yes, color is important, but no, that doesn't mean you should go crazy and turn your dashboard into a rainbow disco ball. Unless, of course, that's what you're going for - in which case as a Data Artist, I fully support your artistic vision.

Aouch it hurts .. no JP not for a monday morning, are you crazy ? (yes, real graph that i have seen..)

But in all seriousness, color plays a crucial role in dashboarding. Imagine staring at a sea of black and white graphs for hours on end. Sounds like a nightmare, right? or maybe sounds like look at an excel sheet.. and now you are thinking you next sales meeting this morning at 10AM… looking at all those numbers… ahah.. Add some color to the mix, and suddenly you've got a visual feast for the eyes. Of course, not too much otherwise the impact will be really negative.

Anyway, it's not just about making things look pretty. Color can also convey meaning and provide context to your data. Colors are for me an important aspect of dashboard design, as they can have a major impact on the effectiveness and user-friendliness of the dashboard.

In this article, i will share with you the key role of colors in dashboard design.

What are the 3 key roles of colors ?


The big benefit of using colors effectively in a dashboard is that they can help to highlight important information and trends. By using color to draw attention to specific data points or trends, dashboard designers can help users to more easily identify and focus on the most important information on the dashboard. This can improve the overall effectiveness and value of the dashboard for users.



Another benefit of using colors effectively in a dashboard is that they can help to improve the readability and clarity of the dashboard. By choosing colors that are appropriate for the data and the purpose of the dashboard, dashboard designers can create a more comprenhensive information, which can make it easier for users to connect information on the dashboard.



A third benefit of using colors effectively in a dashboard is that they can help to create a more organized interface. For example, by choosing a specific color for the navigation bar and use always the same for different pages, we start to create what we call “schema” for the user and it is great for the usability. By “organizing” the dashboard with some colors, dashboard designers can make it more easier to navigate and that is more likely to be used regularly and effectively.

color can help you to organize your information



In conclusion, colors are an important aspect of dashboard design, and the use of colors can have a major impact on the effectiveness and user-friendliness of the dashboard. By using colors effectively, you can improve the readability and clarity of the dashboard, highlight important information and trends, and create a more engaging and user-friendly interface. In this article, I did not talk about the different types of colors palette that we can find and also about all the great tools that we have for colors, but i will keep this for another article. I wish you a great new week and next time you open a dashboard, look at it for 1 minute and take the time to look at the colors and … remember this :

As long as you can answer the question : What purpose does this color serve, and will it serve it effectively ? then you use of color is appropriate, you can keep it 🙂

Enjoy your week in color.


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