Consider website readability when choosing the base or background colors of a website or blog.
The discussion surrounding light vs. dark in the context of web design has always been a debate. The argument has raged on in many different areas, including color theory and usability, all the way down to personal aesthetics and preference.
Today, I'd like to focus on usability—specifically, readability.
I have always been a firm believer that marketing comes first when it comes to design. In my mind, a website serves to facilitate one of three functions: to sell, inform, or showcase. To create a successful website that either sells or informs, it is imperative that the site is readable. For example, you would not use Comic Sans to write a blog post or a product description because it is a script typeface, which inherently hard to read.
The same is true when choosing the background color and text color. Using a dark background with a light text color is hard to read, and can cause eye strain, resulting in a higher bounce rate.
There are countless studies and polls that further solidify a popular preference for dark text on a lighter background. This is in no way saying that doing the latter will immediately cause your site to fail or be unsuccessful, as there are always exceptions to the rule.
However, the main takeaway is that for a website to be marketable, it has to be usable, and to be usable, it must be readable. It is important to think about your specific users when designing a website, and more often than not, the easiest way to achieve readability for users is to choose base/background colors that will make the body text easy to read.