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As an Internet Marketing Professional, it is my duty to address the common problems of today’s Internet Marketing blunders — or lack thereof, or to inform you of new technologies and practices that will benefit your brand. As of recent, I have been running across quite a bit of things that may seem like “old news” and be “outdated information” to some. The problem is, people are still engaging in these common malpractices. Today, we will address Flash!
In the world where HTML5 is beginning to take over web circuits and jQuery is continuously providing us with amazing cross-platform delivery, it is quite interesting to see how many people are still using Flash for primary content delivery. It’s “cool-looking,” yes, but it’s not effective for SEO efforts. As a matter of fact, I have only seen one technology to even try to correct this issue. This technology is Wix, and even they are encouraging the switch to HTML5.
There are constantly being programs created, implementing technologies other than Flash, that mimic the very same features that made us fall in love with Flash to begin with. Few portable and mobile devices actually allow Flash to even work on their platforms. Although, many have become loyal to its usage. Is it a thing of the past? Or, is it simply counteractive to SEO efforts?
Technologies like Wix have created ways to convert content layers into actual objects that can be named and optimized for search engines. The problem with this is cost.
Unless you are willing to pay a specific price to host your domain through Wix and use Wix for your primary domain source, it only benefits Wix and their SEO efforts. It can actually push the “free” service designs ahead of your own professionally designed presences, because the SEO engine that they have created is so powerful.
Other than this, Flash is very nonbeneficial to your web presence. Content is King, as mentioned in other articles and blogs, in providing search engines with a “refresh” for higher ranking over time.
There are ways to get around with non-content optimization. These ways work, but are not enough when in a saturated marketplace. This includes “object” naming (Flash embeds), Meta tags, Footer Tags, and so on.
Flash is embedded on one page and one page only. This means that an engine is not able to optimize your site for delivery to consumers searching for you.
For example, someone is searching “Contact Shorty Produkshins.” If Shorty Produkshins is using Flash and Flash only, the only items that will return are directory listings on other sites. The more traffic these sites get, the higher they are ranked ABOVE Shorty Produkshins’ own official site.
In summary, the use of Flash is okay if it is used for widgets, videos and other objects. But, it is definitely not alright to use it as a primary deliverable for web content. Content is needed in grabbing site rank and “doing numbers.” Internal linking is important for site search and brand-related needs for consumer inquiry.
Text on Flash platforms are NOT able to be shared, therefore do not rank based on organic search terms.
Very bluntly put: In 2013, if you are still using a Flash-based web design, please discontinue it immediately. There are other platform options that will benefit your brand much more and provide a higher return on investments to your endeavors.