Should a demo environment (in this case a trading platform) be an ugly colour in order to encourage people to move to the Live environment?

  • 2
    surely your demo is your point of sale though (whether its actual changing of money or just getting someone's buy in)? Why would I be invested in something that you yourself term as ugly. Your demo site should be something you are proud to show off.
    – Varedis
    Jul 20, 2015 at 15:07
  • 3
    What's the point of the demo if you only want people to use the live environment?
    – DA01
    Jul 20, 2015 at 15:44
  • thanks for the response. The interface itself is the same as the Live environment but the colour less appealing than the Live colour
    – user68815
    Jul 23, 2015 at 18:32

2 Answers 2


When designing a site I use standard colors (blues and grays) in order that I (and the business users reviewing the site) don't become attached to the colors. However I question the wisdom of making a customer facing demo "ugly."

The purpose of the demo is to have the user become comfortable with your site and WANT to use it. I have some experience working on trading platforms and I don't think "ugly" is a way to attract new customers.

  • Yep, thanks, i overstated the "ugly" bit maybe. The interface is exactly the same but the Live colour scheme is a nice blue but demo is a less attractive green. The idea being that, if someone is tracking the markets they will prefer to do it via the Live interface and if they see an opportunity to trade they will do it in the Live env.
    – user68815
    Jul 23, 2015 at 18:35

I share the opinion, that a demonstration environment should not be ugly. Ideally, as a future customer I want to feel welcome and get to know all the features, before i consider buying anything.

Alternatively, you could reset your database at specific time intervals. These intervals should be long enough to try all functions, but too short to work productively.

You can indicate the next reset time by displaying a countdown, e.g. in one of the corners or nearby your central controls.

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