Flash web sites grew into popularity in the last decade, especially among businesses. The technology used produced stunning visual treats that are unique, high tech, and oh-so-appealing to many visitors who liked to see animations and hear sounds when browsing the different pages of a web site. Yet for all their “flashiness,” flash web sites are not ideal for small businesses on a tight budget. Here’s why:
- They’re expensive. Depending on the extent of animation, sound effects, and number of pages, a flash web site can easily set you back by a thousand dollars on the initial set up alone. This does not include the maintenance cost that you have to pay monthly or yearly, depending on your arrangement with the web developer. Supposing you don’t purchase a maintenance package, you’ll end up paying your webmaster a fee each time you request for a change to be made on the site.
- They have a higher tendecy to get neglected over time. The path to business success never did run smooth. Small businesses that undergo financial problems tend to scratch the budget for their web site maintenance and reallocate these resources to other more important budgetary items like wages and salaries. Since no one in the company possess the technical know how to update the web site, it remains out of date and neglected.
- They don’t convert well. It’s an undeniable fact that not all people keep their browsers up to date. I know this because I sometimes stumble upon a flash web site and Chrome would tell me that I have to install Adobe Flash or some other plug in to be able to view the site. There’s two options for me here – either I download the required app to view the site or abandon the site altogether and look for a more browser-friendly web site. I tend to abandon the site. That’s one potential customer out of the door.
- They’re not user friendly. Flash web sites are nice to look at but when it comes down to ease of use, it’s not so nice anymore. Because they’re mostly filled with heavy graphic images, they take a longer time to load than a WordPress web site. That’s a minus point for users in such a fast paced world as ours. More often than not, the user will move on to look at another web site and forget all about yours.
- They don’t rank high in search engine results… that is if they ever rank at all. Do a Google search for any topic and click on the first web site that you see. I’ll bet that 100% of the time it’s not going to be a flash web site. Why? Becase search engine spiders can only read HTML and Flash is not HTML. If these spiders cannot read your site, they’re not going to be able to find you and put you in page one of the search engine results. If your potential customer cannot find you, then you’re not likely to see a very good ROI on your investment in the web site. That’s not good for business.
So what’s the lesson here? Don’t go for a Flash web site. Or, if you have one, dump it. Now.