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Sites With Flash Opening Pages

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7 replies to this topic

#1 Deryck


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Posted 07 August 2003 - 04:58 AM

Hi there,
As a new member, :balloon: perhaps a very basic question.
What are your views on dealing with optimising sites that are built either with a Flash opening page or entirely in Flash?
Or is this already dealt with before in the forum - haven't spotted it.

#2 Matt B

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Posted 07 August 2003 - 07:35 AM

What are your views on dealing with optimising sites that are built either with a Flash opening page or entirely in Flash?

Not to be short, but Don't! :aloha:

Flash opening pages, while irritating, can still be ok to work with, depending on the rest of the site.
Sites built entirely in Flash are a big no-no from an SEO, usability, and accessibility viewpoint.

#3 Scottie


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Posted 07 August 2003 - 08:06 AM

I have to add an addendum to Matt's warning on all-flash sites:

All-flash sites are a bad idea for any sort of business or working site. They are great for interactive applications and games.

In order to get a flash site ranked, you will need to build 2 sites- the flash one and an HTML-based one for visitors without Flash. (spiders don't have flash installed either)

You can direct the HTML-only site only to spiders but if you are doing all that work anyway, (bad idea- cloaking) you might as well allow all visitors without flash to view it. That solves multiple problems.

Anyway you look at it, building a flash site requires a much higher investment.

#4 Drew-z


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Posted 07 August 2003 - 08:12 AM

perhaps a very basic question.
What are your views on dealing with optimising sites that are built either with a Flash opening page or entirely in Flash?

Not a basic question at all.

Why would you want to do an entire site in flash or even the home page in flash?

IMO, this is flasharia and has no chance of success. It's slow, gimicey, distracting, worthless for SEO, and counterproductive to the objective of a web site.

Entertainment is for TV, the web is about information.

I can only surmise this happens so often because a designer becomes one dimentional with a lack of coding skills. Flash is a tool, just like say an animated GIF is a tool, not a replacement for HTML.

This is an example of where flash is used somewhat effectivly as a tool IMO.

Edited by Drew-z, 07 August 2003 - 08:18 AM.

#5 Jill


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Posted 07 August 2003 - 08:37 AM

Welcome Deryck! :aloha:

If your keyword phrases are not competitive at all (like ones that nobody else cares to optimize for) you can sometimes get a Flash site ranked well in the engines, simply by its Title tags and the links pointing to your site.

You'll also occasionally see big brand sites that are all Flash that do okay for highly competitive keyword phrases. This is because they have thousands of links pointing to them.

If you're not a very well-known brand with thousands of links pointing to it, and if you want to rank highly for keyword phrases that real people actually search for in the engines, you'll need to add some straight HTML text to your pages. You can still have some Flash, but you'll need keyword-rich copy to go with it.

The search engines need to read what's on your page to understand how to classify it. They don't do a good job of reading the info in Flash; and let's face it, there's generally not a lot of good info contained in Flash for them to make much effort to extract it.

If you were a search engine, which page would you feel was more relevant for a specific search query? The one that talked about the product or service being searched for, or the one that only had keywords in Meta tags?

Kind of a no-brainer when you think of it that way! :slap:


#6 mcanerin


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Posted 08 August 2003 - 01:19 AM

This subject is near and dear to me because it's why I got into SEO in the first place. I love Flash, and I used to make lots of presentations for which I was paid lots of money, and the world was bright and sunny.....

Then I went out on my own and made my first commercial website totally in Flash (why?, 'cause I could, that's why). And then happily went about researching SEO and how to best promote it. The world turned dark and all the birds and flowers died....

But then I decided the SEO was actually more challenging than making pretty moving pictures and got into it in a big way. I still use Flash, but it's now as:

1. A user requested popup for a presentation or tutorial.
2. A menu structure at the top or side of the page with text links at the bottom
3. An interesting and relevent way of introducing the topic inside the page (like how HP does it - treat it like a smart jpg)

You can also take a cool (but short) intro and put it into the home page and get the same wow effect from the client, while giving your visitors the ability to either choose to watch or to choose a menu item and be off using your site. You don't need the popup flash intro anymore. As a matter of fact, kill it. And I say this as a die hard Flash programmer.


#7 Deryck


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Posted 08 August 2003 - 06:20 AM

Thanks to Jill, mcanerin and all others who took the trouble to answer my question.

Where I was coming from is that we were outsourcing our seo and submission work for about 40 of our sites. Results were generally good with a few exceptions (ironically, not the few Flash sites!).

With the realisation of anti-spamming techniques, we are faced with bringing the work in-house and we have been getting up to speed on preferred, ethical methods of working plus reporting tools etc.

I am fairly confident we can achieve good results ourselves, given a bit of time, thoroughness and research, but was realising that good methods of working didn't really relate to our few existing Flash sites.
Certainly this has reinforced our belief that it is more important to build a successful business site than a glitzy one, if the risk is poor performance. There is simply no contest.

#8 Marc


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Posted 26 September 2003 - 09:59 AM

Flash Sites....done the right way, they can be an awesome marketing tool, but sites that don't have a big name can be left behind if the homepage is completely done in flash (Macromedia can get away with it..Big Company). I was asked about using flash on the homepage for a corporate site I run full-time and talked out an agreement to use it BUT...I link to the actual flash file in my header image ["Our Vision Statement | Flash Version"] instead of having the start page load the file.

Overall...I think smaller sites need the SEO instead of some flashy intro
Bigger sites..can get away with since their name is already established

just my 2 cents :D
I do love viewing a nice flash site though! :lol:


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