Why is my website dark?

I’m so glad you asked!

It’s all to do with climate-friendly website design. Ever heard of it?

Green website designs look at how much carbon a website uses and try to make it as easy as possible for visitors to find information so that they don’t have to load masses of unwanted content.

The more complex a website is, the more energy it needs to load, and ultimately the worse it is for the environment. This blog post will explore why I’ve gone with dark mode for my website design, but I’ve also considered other aspects of climate-friendly design and you’ll find these in the conclusion at the bottom of the page.

Energy efficiency & environmental sustainability

Dark mode has gained significant popularity in recent years. It offers a visually appealing and modern alternative to traditional light themes, and can contribute to environmental sustainability by reducing energy consumption and minimising carbon emissions.

Let’s explore the benefits of dark website design, including the positive impact on the environment and improved user experience.

Reduced energy consumption

Dark mode is particularly advantageous for devices with OLED or AMOLED screens. These screens can turn off individual pixels when displaying true black, resulting in lower energy consumption compared to bright colours. By utilising dark backgrounds, websites can help conserve energy and decrease the power consumed by screens.

It’s worthwhile noting that this isn’t the case for LCD screens. These screens have a single backlight that illuminates the whole screen. Whatever the colour displayed on a website, the backlight is always on, meaning a dark website design doesn’t over any advantage in this respect.

Lower carbon footprint

The reduction in energy consumption directly translates to a lower carbon footprint, especially in regions where electricity production relies on fossil fuels. Embracing dark website design indirectly contributes to reducing carbon emissions associated with the generation and consumption of electricity.

Extended device battery life

Dark mode plays a crucial role in extending the battery life of smartphones, laptops, and other devices. By displaying true black, OLED or AMOLED screens can turn off specific pixels, conserving battery power. This allows users to use their devices for longer periods without frequent charging, thereby reducing energy consumption.

User experience

Reduced eye strain

Dark backgrounds with lighter text and elements can alleviate eye strain, especially during prolonged screen use. By reducing the amount of bright light emitted by screens, dark mode can provide a more comfortable viewing experience, particularly in low-light environments. This does depend on your personal preferences however. The studies so far are inconclusive as to whether dark themes and blue light filters actually offer proven health benefits.

Improved readability

Dark mode often makes use of high-contrast colour schemes, which can enhance the legibility of text and content. The contrast between light text and a dark background improves readability and can benefit users with visual impairments or specific types of colour blindness.

Visual appeal

Dark website design is generally regarded as visually appealing and modern. It lends a sleek and stylish look to websites, enhancing the overall user experience and drawing attention to what’s actually written on the page.

Focus on content

Last but not least, dark backgrounds appear to recede into the background, allowing content to take centre stage. This is particularly useful for websites relying on visual or media-rich content, as the darker backdrop can make images or videos stand out.

My conclusion?

Dark website design offers numerous benefits, promoting environmental sustainability and improving user experience. The possible reduction in eye strain, enhanced readability, and emphasis on content contribute to an enjoyable browsing experience. Moreover, the energy efficiency of dark mode leads to energy savings and low carbon emissions. By embracing dark website design, we’re able to create visually appealing websites while minimising our ecological footprint.

Will you consider incorporating dark mode into your next website design to contribute to a greener digital environment?

If you’re looking for more inspiration on climate-friendly website design, read How to Make Your Website More Eco-Friendly.

That’s why my website is hosted on Krystal (for green hosting), why you won’t find any videos on my website, why this post has no images and why I’ve tried to avoid using too many fonts across my website.

I’ve signed the Sustainable Web Manifesto, because I believe we all have a responsibility to consider eco-friendly website design, even us solopreneurs.

The choice between dark and light website design ultimately depends on your target audience, website purpose, and overall user experience goals.

English (UK)