Back in June, Adobe announced they were providing technology to Google and Yahoo that would allow the search engines to crawl Flash content. While this isn’t new news, it’s really cool to finally see this in action. A new client of mine has a web site with the entire navigation system embedded in a SWF Flash banner. With the help of Adobe’s Searchable SWF Library, Google crawled all the pages in a matter of days without me having to add a text-based navigation system anywhere on the pages. Quite often it isn’t feasible, or visually appealing, to clutter up a Flash site with text links at the bottom of every page just for SEO purposes.
The indexing was achieved by Adobe providing Google and Yahoo with technology that allowed the search spiders to navigate as a virtual user. It would see the same content and links you or I would.
This new ability to index more content has a twofold effect: First, suddenly there is more content available to search engine users that was previously hidden. And second, webmasters won’t have to sacrifice the look and feel of web sites anymore by shying away from using Flash.