Should my website start with a Macromedia Flash presentation?

Not if you want visitors and search engines to use your site.

According to some surveys 94% of web searchers will click the "skip intro" button and not watch your Flash presentation at all.  Flash takes time to load, even with high speed connections.  And for those that are still using dial-up, it could crash their computers or take so long that they get frustrated and leave. 

Search engines like text.  They cannot read graphics and have a hard time with flash.  If search engines are part of your marketing strategy, make it easy for search engines to index your site.

Flash is a great program and when used intelligently, it can really had excitement and interest to a website.  However, if it is there simply for entertainment value, it may hurt you more than help you.

Keep in mind (you may need to remind your designer of this) that your website is an marketing tool (just as your phone book ad is), not a gallery for your Web designers’ work.

April 1, 2002

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