google-flash2In the past, Google has been unable to extract content such as links and text from SWF (Flash) files. This has posed a big hassle for both web designers and search engine users.
As a result, flash-based content hasn’t been picked up by Google’s search engine. Designers had to work around the issues so Flash pages could actually be indexed and ranked in Google. Although, it still wasn’t a guaranteed solution that indexing would work for Flash pages. For users, it was still difficult to match viable queries in Google because of these same indexing issues.
Google’s Improvements
Even Google wasn’t on board in the past with Flash files and actually warned against Flash sites in their “Help” section. But they are singing a different algorithm tune now. Yes, Google had a brainstorm – they can now index Flash content in their searches. Good news for both web designers and Google users.
According to Google, they beefed up their algorithms so they are “less error prone.” They teamed up with Adobe to help them come up a better solution. Adobe’s Flash technology now “reads” Flash files allowing it to pull texts and links better – this helps indexing and rankings. Flash gadgets (buttons and menus) are better indexed now.
So is this the much-needed FIX that web designers and users have been searching for with Flash sites? NO, it’s not a fool-proof solution!
Limitations with Flash Content Indexing
Google is still working out the bugs and there are still limitations associated with indexing Flash content.

    • Googlebot has issues with JavaScript. If the Flash page loads via JavaScript, Google doesn’t always recognize Flash files and then it can’t index the site.

    • Can’t attach external resources from Flash page. If your page loads multiple XML and HTML files, files will be indexed individually. Google doesn’t recognize these files as part of your Flash content.

    • Google indexing bumps out Flash pages in bidirectional languages such as Hebrew and Arabic.

SEO and HTML – Choose Wisely
From the SEO perspective, HTML is still your best bet when designing websites. If you want a quick fix, then Flash can do the job especially if you don’t want to revamp your entire website. However, if you want to see long-term, dynamic ranking results then stick with HTML when you give your site an overhaul.
The key to HTML is that designers need to remember SEO guidelines – poorly coded HTML will mess up your search engine rankings. A validated HTML website is a good thing to have!
HTML Tips – Clean Up Your Code
If you are making over your website, clean out that bad code. Bad code can hurt your site with search engines in several ways.

    • Search engines look for relevant terms in HTML components within a page. If you have mistakes or errors, you will mess up search engine spiders and they will pass over your site or you’ll lose your ranking in search engines.

    • Bad code can also disrupt browsers’ functions and pages may not be viewed correctly by users