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The reputation doctor: “How do I get traffic to my Flash website?”

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Q: Our website is heavily flash-based which often means it is not recognised by search engines as effectively, we cannot monitor analytics, or clicks, etc. How can we work around this without creating a new website?

A: Unfortunately, although Google in particular has made great progress in crawling Flash files, there are fundamental limitations that mean you will always struggle compared to HTML websites. In particular, without rebuilding your site, you will never have unique URLs for different pages on your site. This means that there is no way of linking directly to deep pages on your site (such as your showreel page). Without this, you will struggle to appear in the search engines beyond branded search terms such as your company name.

One simple thing you can do is to include some keyphrases in the title of your site (currently just ‘jelly’) and include at least one page of HTML content on your homepage for visitors that don’t have Flash capabilities (which includes the search engine spiders in this case). But the best thing you could do is to build a version of your site that is mainly HTML (with embedded Flash content if you need).

Either way, I would recommend moving your blog onto your main domain (to something like jellylondon.com/blog). This allows you to do two things – you can target sensible search phrases with interesting articles and also you can gather links to deep pages on your site. In terms of the tracking, without rebuilding your site, your best bet is to read up on the Google Analytics API. You can trigger events on flash actions such as virtual page loads and with some diligence; you can track most movements around your site.

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