When it comes to web design, everybody has their own preferences. A flash website, however, is something that the online community loves to hate. There are little kinks that usually get to a website visitor when they stumble upon a site that runs on flash. The most annoying would be how long the flash files take to load – nobody likes to sit in front of their computer waiting for a file or image to buffer or load.

We live in a time of road rage and downloads, where impatience is the order of the day. Chances are, if a person goes online to shop they want to be able to find what they need quickly; the last thing people want is to be distracted and to wait for pages to load.

What web designers should know about flash sites

1. Websites that are 100% flash cannot run on mobile phones

People enjoy the advantage of having their internet on the go and in their hands. The graphic format and CPU-intensive flash programme is a not suitable for phones and this is a big disadvantage.

2. Websites with flash have less people staying on than other websites

If people are irritated by flashing graphics and long loading times, they might click away and find the information they need elsewhere. If other sites cater to their need for speed and urgency, the user will not stay on the site.

3. Websites with flash are not easy to use

Most flash sites do not have the option to increase font size for easier reading. Reading from a computer screen is already strenuous and people want to reserve the right to be able to adjust the font to suite them, this is not possible with flash sites. You also cannot bookmark a page within the site or highlight information to paste onto your contact manager. These problems are not easily forgiven by internet surfers.

4. Websites with flash do not provide easily readable meta data

Flash sites are responsible for the problem of difficult-to-access meta data. Because of their animated content display, the search engine cannot extract a proper website description to show under the search query.

5. Some people get their flash disabled to avoid unwanted advertising

Animated, slow buffering images are not welcome with open arms on the net, so people have chosen to disable Flash to avoid these unwanted advert animations. Page loading is found to be slower with the flash sites fully active online, so Flash is also disabled to improve page loading times.

There are many different things to be considered when tackling web design. For more information on this, contact WSI today!

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