International Trade

Going global: Which colours can help to win over local customers?

2 min read

26 January 2015

As you take your business global, what are the colours you should associate your brand with in order to win over local customers? Here are the colours that work well in export countries.

Colours, symbols and phases can have favourable associations that can benefit ecommerce entrepreneurs attempting to reach a global customer base. 

But which colours work best in each country? Here is research by ecommerce platform Tictail, which looks after 60,000 international stores, showing which colours you should link to your brand when you begin exporting.

Japan’s colour: Green

In Japan, the colour green is traditionally associated with life, rebirth, growth and vitality, and is appropriate for brands connected with health and wellbeing. The Japanese also associate the colour red with life; however, in Chinese, green is associated with infidelity and even exorcism.  

China’s colour: Red 

In China red is the traditional bridal colour, and is associated with celebration, happiness, joy, vitality and long life. The colour red is also believed to bring good fortune. 

South Korea’s colour: Pink 

In South Korea pink is a gender-neutral colour, which is akin in meaning to red in Chinese and associated with celebration and happiness. It also represents trust and tradition.

Holland’s colour: Orange 

Dutch interpretation: Orange is the national colour of the Netherlands. The Dutch association with the colour orange stems from its royal house, Orange Nassau. The colour is generally associated with the sun: warmth, energy, vitality, and health in the form of the orange fruit and vitamin C. 

France’s colours: Red, white and blue 

The colours of the French national flag, the tricolour, are widely employed in French marketing for their obvious connection to national pride, and association with the French revolutionary philosophy of liberty, equality and fraternity. Red and blue were adopted by 1789 revolutionaries; white is associated with French royal tradition. 

Russia’s colour: Red

Following the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, red became synonymous with communism. In the post Soviet era, the true traditional significance of the colour has begun to reassert itself in Russian culture – representing beauty rather than blood-sacrifice; in fact, the Russian word for red ‘krasny’ derives from the word for beauty ‘krasivy.’