Someone mentioned to me recently that he was thinking of putting up a new website with a flash program. He was very excited because the system was free. Flash is a very attractive tool for websites. It allows for beautiful animation and special effects. But it’s a terrible idea for any business that needs to attract visitors by organic search.
This is because a flash page is like an image file. The search engine spiders cannot “read” it. The spiders can read the words of an HTML page.
That being said, search engines are getting better at reading flash with the help of newer flash systems. But until the technology is perfected, I wouldn’t recommend it.
There’s another problem.
Matt Cutts, from Google, earlier this year, noted that a lot of mobile devices simply can’t load flash sites.
So imagine a prospective customer is having lunch with his wife at a restaurant. They decide they want to buy patio furniture (or whatever your store sells). The wife whips out her cell phone and googles “patio furniture+your city.”
Although your store is just two miles away, they can’t access your page because it’s built entirely in flash. But they do see your competitor’s HTML website.
Your competitor’s site may not be as pretty as yours, but he gets the sale.
Easy Web Tip #34: For now, it’s safer to build a website with traditional HTML. You can still embed flash technology within your site for animation and flare.
P.S. Next week, I’ll discuss “free” website offers.