Part of the design process is deciding what colors you are going to use. You are not just choosing the color of the background, but also the links, headers, footers, sidebars and text. You want a site that will be legible, professional and eye-catching. As with most aspects of the design process, you should take a look at the color schemes for other sites, both for inspiration and also to see what works or doesn’t work for you.
There are several methods for combining colors. These methods are analogous, alternate analogous, split complimentary, triadic and monochromatic. With the analogous method, you pick a specific color on a color wheel and then pick two colors on either side of that color. With the alternate analogous method, you do the same, except the colors you pick will be a step removed from the opposite color. Using the split complementary method you pick a color and then go to the color directly opposite it on the color wheel. The colors you will be using will be on either side of the opposite color. With the triadic method, you pick three colors that are equidistant on the color wheel. With the monochromatic method you pick various shades of one color.
When choosing colors keep color relativity in mind. Color relativity means that a specific color will appear to be a different color when shown against other colors. As an example, something yellow might appear to be green against a blue background, or something orange might appear to be more yellow or red depending on the color of the background. Always test your colors and make sure that your text contrasts with the background. Avoid using the browser default colors for your links. They should be integrated into the overall design of your site. Keep track of the colors you are using! Always make a list of the colors that you will be using on your page so that your site is consistent.