The world of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is filled with a plethora of tools and techniques that you must familiarize yourself with, in order to have your website successfully attract traffic. Some of them can appear counterintuitive to the novice at first encounter, and sometimes weeks – if not months – can be lost in correcting an error.
A popular tool for developing websites is taking the web by storm, due to its wonderful and flashy graphics and eye-catching patterns; appropriately, this tool is called Flash. Unfortunately Flash; despite how attractive it can make a website, should be avoided by the search engine optimizer. Why is Flash bad for SEO? After all, if it truly tends to make a website more attractive, then isn’t that what you want, in order to stand apart from the crowd and get visitors to your website?
Let’s consider a few of the most important aspects of SEO, and what it is they do for your website. For starters, the goal is to raise the importance of your website in the “eyes” of the search engine robots, which crawl the web relentlessly, scouring pages for well-placed data, such as website titles in the appropriate metatags, keywords placed in the alt tags of images, and the backlinks to the site.
You can consider each page of the search engine results to be associated with a number of visitors; with page fifty having maybe twenty people each day going that far back to search for a particular keyword, and page one having many thousands or even millions. Clearly, the goal is to get as close to page one as possible, and that means linking to quality websites, and having a quality website of your own.
Now the reason why Flash is bad for SEO is because, by the very nature of the program, it cannot be “read” by the search engine robots! All the work you put in to make your site informative, easy-to-read, and attractive for the purpose of getting quality visitors will mostly go to waste if you do it using Flash; because while humans may be able to read it; search engine robots cannot, and so they ignore it. As a result, you website will stay in the later pages, rarely seen, no matter how good the other on-page factors are.
There are other reasons why Flash is bad for SEO. People often tend to overdo it, precisely because Flash is a showy platform. If you have a professional website, the beginning search engine optimizer must realize that she is in competition for any visitor’s attention. A beautiful Flash program of a car racing around a city block for a website selling car loans might at first seem like a good idea, but statistics gathered by Google and others prove that people tend to turn on “ad blinders.”
This happens as a result of the very early days of the internet, when ads capable of almost giving people seizures with their flashiness reigned supreme. Your viewers like their information presented crisply and without embellishments. Even if you have a website geared towards something like video games, these “ad blinders” can go into effect, and Flash can still end up being bad for SEO.
You’ve seen that search engines do not like Flash, and serious web-users tend to ignore it. A third reason why Flash is bad for SEO is that it tends to slow down websites; this is directly at odds with keeping visitors onsite. Unless you’re a big-budget design studio, with the resources to overcome bad SEO practices, you should stay away from using Flash.