We have all seen them.
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There are a lot of the Flash website creators available out there; even huge companies like Telus have website templates that are made in Flash. Programming companies like Magix don't sell you software anymore to make a website, you pay to go to their website and choose templates to make your website from.
So what could possibly be wrong with that?
First off websites created that way are not easy to make changes to, especially if you do it a lot. Also you have to fit what you want to do into sometimes narrow programming options like graphics and sizes. And they aren't portable, if you want to host somewhere else you are stuck doing it all over again from scratch.
An even bigger problem is that because they are made in that format they are the worst possible type of site that can be made for search engines. Since most of a business's website traffic, and business, comes through or from the search engines this is a major problem that can't be ignored. Even the companies that develop websites in Flash (basically a programming language for animation) try and use some things to help with the search engines but nothing can compare to html or xml. Some developers go so far as to have two websites made, one in Flash and one in HTML, in the old days (10 years ago) the reason they did it was because of download times, Flash sites take a lot longer to download then HTML sites so they gave the viewer the opportunity to choose which way they wanted to view the website. Basically only websites that really needed to show off used Flash. The problem now is because higher bandwidth connections are more readily available most companies don't make two websites. But now add to the problem the fact that Google, which controls over 70% of website searches, is going to implement page speed download as a ranking factor, sites only done in Flash are at an even higher disadvantage for good search engine positions.
Another issue, programming languages, like those used in shopping carts, CRM and CMS websites - basically any website that can do something, can also get in the way of good search engine penetration. Search engines can have problems "crawling" websites that are written in ASP, PHP, Ruby and even CFLD. You can make them a little more friendly if you really know what you are doing, that usually means having programers, graphic designers and search engine specialist work together to make sure the programming is working with the latest ways search engines are using to crawl and rank websites.
What to do? Make sure your website can be read properly by the search engines no matter how it is put together. Animation and such are nice but if you have to sacrifice viewers for animation, from a business standpoint that isn't very productive. Mixing a little Flash into the website still gives a great show and doesn't effect the search engines as much if done properly. What we do at GetSet! Communications Inc. is to make complete HTML versions of our websites that are programmed in CLFD, even though we only use Flash to give it an edge, users have the option to generate the website into HTML at anytime for better search engine penetration. There is a way for your website to look good and function well with the search engines, it just takes good programming and an understanding of how the search engines function, a task usually left to professionals that deal with search engine issues all the time. So make sure your developer is using the proper strategies before going ahead with that new website or you will pay a great deal for it over time.