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Flash (also known as Adobe Flash, Shockwave Flash or Macromedia Flash) is a multimedia technology that embeds animation and interactivity into web pages. It often provides a more polished or professional look to a site.

There are many sites that have a Flash introduction that appears once a site is first launched. Some have a flash component built within a website. And… there are even those that are entirely developed using this technology.

While Flash can be slow to load and requires a plugin to view, the real issue is with the search engines.

What is the problem from a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) perspective?

Search engines have a difficult time to crawl a site built with this technology. Keywords and content that are embedded within a Flash file cannot be indexed by the engines. An all-Flash site hinders search engine visibility as it lacks page structure to organize the content, internal linking, and unique page titles.

Flash sites rank poorly or not at all in a search query (depending on the extent of Flash used). If getting found in natural or organic searches is important to your business, ensure that your site is search engine friendly. Avoid or limit the use of Flash.

The SEO test

Using an SEO browser, you can view a website just like a search engine sees it. Below is the results of a site built entirely with Flash.

“[player.png]
GET FLASH PLAYER 8”

Does the above mean anything to you? Probably not….. It means even less to a search engine which is looking for content relevant to the site it is crawling.

So ask yourself… What is more important to your business – a pretty face or a fully searchable website that can be indexed by search engines? Will it be Flash or SEO?