| 10:57 pm on Apr 25, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Haven't seen that, but I believe we heard a while back that Google was following Flash links. It's been pretty quiet about it since, though. Was there an alternate HTML page or just the Flash page?
Oh, and how about the description snippet, how did that look?
| 11:09 pm on Apr 25, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I think this is possible, we did a software implementation that was able to parse > 100 content types, including flash.
| 11:10 pm on Apr 25, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|just saw a serp with an indexed flash page, can't still believe my eyes. At least [flash] is shown at the result. |
What kind of search? For a long time Google has been showing [flash] files when searcing for
site:www.foo.com. I haven't seen flash when searching for keywords. I don't know why they would be included in the SERPS since it would be too easy to hide any text that might somehow be related to the file.
| 11:28 pm on Apr 25, 2004 (gmt 0)|
They are definitely indexed. Search for .swf. The result I am seeing at #11 does have a description of sorts. I too have yet to see them in regular results.
| 11:34 pm on Apr 25, 2004 (gmt 0)|
No kidding! Try searching using file type as in foo filetype:swf
| 12:06 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Just found one with text indexed under a keyword search. I hope this is allowed, but I searched for Joe Cartoon and found it at position 101.
| 3:54 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
try 'joe cartoon swf' for lots of them
| 4:57 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
oh no! more serp pollution... i really hoped this would not happen.
What's next - Excel spreadsheets? They should really keep all those non-html results out of the SERPS, imho. The same goes for email-lists, although those are formatted as html. Use a separate tab for non-web content or whatever, just keep the SERPS clean.
| 5:09 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Agree, claus. After [webmasterworld.com...] I would have at least expected that they would show the size of the file.
Searching around for a currently popular regular 3 word search, I found one on-topic pure flash site at #9 that has not been there before. What the description snippet looked like? Spammy, keyword-stuffed, but what do you expect ...kw1 kw2 kw3 kw4 ...
| 5:22 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
While I agree that adding file types to the SERPs adds pollution, I don't see Flash as polluting the results. While I don't build sites in Flash for all of the obvious reasons, many people do. And, the sites can be very relevant, which IMHO means they should appear in the SERPs.
| 5:35 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|What's next - Excel spreadsheets? |
With great respect, claus (I enjoy your posts very much), you are missing the point. A website designed to communicate a user experience, a message, and information is entirely different from an excel spreadsheet.
Indexing flash is important because countless websites have been designed with it. What this means is that there is a great body of meaningful information that is invisible.
A search engine's limitation should not dictate the way a website is designed. User experience and website intent must always be the foundation of a website's design. A website should be designed in a manner that is best for the audience and the message- not for what is best for the search engine. For instance, entertainment websites for music, movies, and game websites are an entirely appropriate context for Flash.
There are perhaps millions of websites with important information that have been ignored because of their inherent indexability. That's a great loss.
If these reports are true, it's time to brush up on your Flash coding skills.
If this report is true, then it's about time.
| 5:43 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I have seen some fantastic, out of this world flash sites that don't rank well (at all), which is a shame. When I did my first little bit of flash work I went to various sites that will give a review. In many cases they will require you to review a certain number of sites to get yours reviewed. I was blown away to the point I almost gave up html completely.
Then I tried to learn it.:(
| 6:16 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I even see some instances where there is a
'View as HTML' link beside the Flash file.
It doesn't work at all, but it's a first time for me, and should be a strong indication that Google now has the ability to do something with Flash files.
Not sure how I feel about it yet though...
| 6:31 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I've got some flash pages which ranks pretty well in serps. I basically make sure that the page has a nice mixture of flash and text. In this particular page I had to duplicate some text in html that was also in the flash app so that google can feed on it. Not pretty but works.
Search in google for
famous painter dali
and my site should be #2 with art is fun in the title.
You can hardly tell which is text and which is flash..
| 6:40 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
we're talking about pages with .swf extensions. In your case Google has indexed the html page that has a flash file embedded..
| 7:10 am on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Slightly OT, but on a related theme, as G indexes flash, I was wondering if anyone had a view on the use of the <noembed> tag and how much weight/importance is attached.
It has a potential for abuse, much like that of the <noframes> tag, yet whilst Ive known some <noframes> content do very well in competitive serps, I know of few <noembed> flash pages that perform as well or at all...
My initial findings on a site im working with right now are inconclusive in that whilst the content of the tag is indexed, it performs poorly for its target terms.
Im just trying to establish whether the apparent poor performance is a result of a lower algo score attributed to the html that resides inside the noembed tag. If it is, then its not a problem I can move much of what is there outside so that its visible, although from an aesthetic viewpoint Id rather not.
Id be interested and grateful for any perspectives on this.
| 12:43 pm on Apr 26, 2004 (gmt 0)|
>>I've got some flash pages which ranks pretty well in serps. I basically make sure that the page has a nice mixture of flash and text.
In that case, it is not your flash pages that are ranking well, it is your html pages that are ranking well.
Question: We all know Google is able to find links within flash files. Is that at all dependent on a version(i.e. Flash 3, 4, MX) of Flash?
| 12:22 am on Apr 27, 2004 (gmt 0)|
>> A website designed to communicate a user experience, a message, and information is entirely different from an excel spreadsheet.
I've never noticed the "information" part of flash sites (and as i work a lot with media and entertainment i've seen quite a few of them), but surely, for entertainment some good stuff can be made (games etc). That is just not what i wish to see in the SERPS - they should put it on a tab like images for those who want it, that's what i'm suggesting. In fact, i'm suggesting that they should put all non-html there.
How about the stuff people really search for, like, say, mp3's, mpegs, avi's, and other types of binaries like software. If they ever decide to index such very interesting content, should that also be in the regular SERPS? I would say no.
| 3:10 am on Apr 27, 2004 (gmt 0)|
>they should put it on a tab like images for those who want it
How do they decide what goes on a tab? I never click on a link to a doc file, and very rarely to pdf files.
| 4:59 am on Apr 27, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|I've never noticed the "information" part of flash sites... |
Then you have a blind eye to what has been going on for the last few years. It's not your fault. I blame the search engines.
Here's a website from the Discovery Channel about Billy the Kid [dsc.discovery.com], a fine Flash website with lots of information that is in Flash.
| 5:53 am on Apr 27, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Google has said all along that it's goal is to index the web in such a way that people should not have to adapt to them. This is just part of that. As much as we disslike it Flash plays a very big part of the web. You have to remember that Google wants to index the whole internet and sites that have designers that have any clue about search engines is still a very tiny part of the web.
| 2:24 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
So, does anyone know if this is new? I have to confess to not following SE Flash indexing.
| 3:23 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|As much as we dislike ... Flash |
Please don't include me. I love it. I'm not talking about crappy endlessly-loading no-info Flash sites but the tool itself. I know it's been likened to a hammer in this forum, and I know some of the arguments for and against (and yes, it needs a plug-in, and raises important accessibility issues), but as a pure design tool, it can be a dream. I'm no Flash guru but for one thing vector graphics slashes load time, and wasn't it Brett Tabke who said each second over about five loses 10% of your visitors? For a site with graphics, that's maybe losing more visitors than a Google filter. And there's much much more.
I'm certain that like ATW did for a while, Google has long been able to read inside a .swf file - and not just links. The day when Flash pages are as indexable for their written content as any other web page can't come soon enough for me. Apart from anything else, it's time for a good shakeup - though doubtless Google will tread cautiously.
| 6:58 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
That's a great site, and I am all for flash.
Still, its an html page that ranks #24 for billy the kid. The flash inside is not indexed, which is why it doesn't rank higher, as it should.
| 7:25 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I dont get the hoorara...i've seen flash indexed for months upon months...
| 7:37 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|The flash inside is not indexed, which is why it doesn't rank higher, as it should. |
To make sure we're discussing the same thing here: Is it accurate to say Google is indexing the Flash link (i.e. - the fact that a file exists), but not indexing anything inside the swf files?
Not sure if my wording there is very good, but hopefully someone can sort out what I'm asking. :)
| 8:35 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
As far as I can remember they used to follow links from swf's in the past, but not indexing the content.
Now I see some swf files indexed including their content.
| 11:04 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
The top result of a search for "poo filetype:swf" definitely shows that not only is the swf getting indexed, but the written content of the flash file is inserted as the description in the SERP.
| 11:53 pm on Apr 28, 2004 (gmt 0)|
People who write websites in flash don't get it.
They don't get accessibility.
They don't get platform independence.
They don't get open standards.
They don't get information structure above and beyond design.
I've nothing against people writing websites in flash for their own use and the amusement of their friends... but search engines really ought not be encouraging them - not if they believe that the web is the Library of Alexandria of the modern age rather than PT Barnum's commercial sideshow.
I'll stand corrected if someone can point me towards a flash site of genuine importance and informational benefit.
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