Why We Don’t Do Flash – Search Engines 101


There was a time when Net Age did indeed use Flash. Chances are most people and businesses have gone through this stage in the development of their web design.

We, like everyone else, found ourselves enamored with its (pardon the pun) flashy effects and its ability to spiff up a web page, and we very much believed we’d be using it for a long time to come.

That was a very long time ago.

What Changed Our Minds About Flash?

We caught on.

Our aim at Net Age has always been to provide our clients with functional, efficient sites. Using Flash was counter-productive to that goal. You see, Flash is infuriatingly difficult, bordering on impossible to incorporate into a search-engine friendly site.

While, yes, it is possible to create a site that somewhat meets our requirements for search engine friendliness using Flash, the process is long, complicated and expensive. Not to mention that, in the end, despite the cost and complexity of such a task, a site constructed in such a way will never achieve its full potential for search engine optimization (SEO).

Why Doesn’t Flash Work?

Well, without going into too much obscure technical detail, the simple fact is that search engine crawlers (the industrious programs responsible for finding and cataloging your site for the search engines) just cannot ‘read’ Flash. They cannot make sense of it and therefore don’t know how to list it in their databases.

That conflicts with our objective of developing your website to be as accessible as possible to the search engines.

A Second Opinion On Flash?

Net Age is not alone on the anti-Flash front

Pages takes longer to open (typically 2 to 10 times more). Search engines only see text, and Flash has no text. So, search engines will not return results for a site whose content is embedded in Flash. Flash effects usability and accessibility http://flashsucks.org/

“Unfortunately, Flash technology is a poor choice for most commercial web sites. http://www.antezeta.com/flash-problems.html

“True, Flash done right can be incredibly cool. The problem is, it is incredibly annoying most of the time, and sometimes can crash your browser–and more often than not it is completely unnecessary.” http://www.blogd.com/archives/000672.html