I see most web sites which are fully designed in flash as tacky. There are definitely a few designers who have been able to pull off full web designs by just using Flash but most of those sites are usually designed for entertainment purposes only. One example of this would be movie web site. Movie web sites are usually designed to give the feel of the movie itself and have the user feel like they’re a part of that story. However, there are many ways to get that effect without the use of a full flash design.
Here are a few things about flash that every designer & client should consider:
1. Flash Intros and Splash Pages
Some of the most annoying and tacky web designs I have seen include a Flash intro or splash page. They usually take forever to load, even on a fast connection. The worst mistake that some flash designers make are forgetting or intentionally leaving out a SKIP button so that users can bypass the long and usually useless intro. I usually visit web sites to gather information about the subject I am seeking and Flash Intros just get in the way of that. It’s bad enough that you’ve created a splash page or intro to your site but please don’t make it worst by not letting the user skip it. If it’s true that you only have a split second to grab a user’s attention in order to keep him on your site, then you’ve just lost about 50% of your potential users to load time alone. Another 40% will most likely leave when they see that they cannot bypass your annoying splash page.
Let’s say the other 10% have the time and patience to sit around waiting for your intro to end and site to load. Where do they go from here? Many flash designers have chosen to make the site cool and hip by creating a navigation system that is hidden under elements on the page and usually don’t even put descriptive text over those elements. I’m sure you’ve all seen sites which you must hover over all the elements just to find out which are clickable. Then you get to the page which it has linked you to only to find out that it’s not the page you were looking for. You then have to go back and forth trying to find the information you need because some shoddy designer decided to create a useless navigation system. By this time you’ve probably lost another 8% of users.
3. Sounds and Music set to Autoplay
I don’t know about you, but when I’m on the computer browsing the web I’m usually listening to music. It’s pretty irritating to land on a site with loud music or annoying sound effects that are set to automatically play. I then scroll down to hit stop or mute on the player only to find out that there is no player on the page and there’s also a missing mute button. Who ever created these types of sites must have for some reason decided that the only way for you to experience their design is through their horrible music and sound effects. Audio on flash web sites should always include a visible way to mute the sound. Not all your users are going to want to listen to it so don’t be surprised when you lose the rest of your 2% who actually decided to sit through the other annoyances that came with visiting your site.
4. Ranking and SEO
Unless Google comes up with a way to read exactly what’s on images and flash files, there’s no way your site is going to rank well if it’s built solely on flash. There are some ways nowadays to create flash elements which can be read by the search engine but if you’re whole site is just based on a flash movie, you can kiss that part of optimization goodbye. So by now you have a site which loads slow, confuses users, annoys them with intrusive music or sound effect and doesn’t rank at all with search engines. If you think about it, what’s the point of even having the site up if it’s just going to sit there with no real purpose? You’re basically just wasting your money on hosting and who wants to waste money on days like these?
Hi! My name is Dro and I Livestream and make silly videos on my youtube channel just about daily. For about 16 years I was also the bassist for the band Deadstar Assembly from South Florida. I'm a huge fan of livestreaming, wildlife & exotic pets, programming, music, art and much more!