Flash Intolerance and Search Engine News
For ages now, the various arguments against whole-Flash websites have included the fact that search engines can't read text embedded in Flash files — which means that no matter what is written in a Flash-only website, that "page" or text will not be found in search engines. In effect, this made Flash-only sites "invisible" on the Web, requiring other methods of advertising than, say, the optimization of HTML pages for search engines.
Well, surprise surprise — note this thread at searchengineforums.com:
Well its finally happened. Google has implemented Macromedia Flash Search Engine SDK and is indexing Flash Text, not just GetURL. Do a search for whatever and filetype:swf and you'll see what I mean ….
A follow-up search at Google for "web hosting" filetype:swf returns only Flash files rather than text-laden HTML pages containing Flash. So the advice that "search engines cannot read Flash files" is beginning to be dated advice indeed.
Of course, making a site search engine friendly (able to be read by search engines) is one thing. But to take advantage of this development in terms of ranking well (at Google, anyway), Flash designers will have to optimize text for search engines. Which is a whole other issue, but certainly one that can be surmounted.
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