I still find a lot of people overshadowed by the beauty Flash animation despite its horrific performance on search engines.
A new friend invited me for some drinks at Xi Yan, a recently opened dining joint located at the heart of Causeway Bay. I remember there’s one shop at Starstreet in Wan Chai. I looked at the web site and think that unless a lot of people are aware of the Xi Yan brand, they won’t be able to find its web site, locate its shops or make reservations. In short, it is missing opportunities just because of the over emphasis of Flash beauty.
The site offers dining vouchers, culinary art books and promotes its facilities ideal for corporate meetings, wedding ceremonies and group gatherings. But don’t expect search engines to show mercy on this site for seekers of such products. It’s because search engines can’t find these text content — they’re buried beneath heaps of Flash layers.
All it could read is the preloader message “llloooaaaadddddiiiiinnnnngggg” and the rest of the text follows beneath the repetitive text. Looking at the number of pages indexed by Google, there are only two files the search giant could pry out from the site: the homepage SWF files and a loose PDF document whose content is even more human readable than what the Flash animation could show. So if the site has all PDFs in place, Xi Yan would no doubt be more search engine visible.
Remember that if your pages are not within the search engine index, there’s no way they’ll show up on search results. So if I can’t find Xi Yan web site if I search for “Causeway Bay dining“, probably I’ll find Xi Yan’s competitors. And that’s an opportunity slipping away for this nice dining place.
It is possible to utilize Flash’s beauty without sacrificing search engine visibility. For example, I can check “hong kong architects” and find LCL Architects show up in search results. Flash itself is not bad. What’s bad is how we use it.