Google reads Flash text, so optimize it

Filed under: — By Aviran Mordo @ 9:34 am

With the recent admission by Matt Cutts to Stephan Spencer that Google is using Adobe Systems’ Search Engine SDK technology, a new set of optimization opportunities opened up.

That fairly definite confirmation of how Google reads text within Flash files makes it possible to create Flash .swf files with some level of search engine optimization.

“It used to be the case that we had our own, home-brew code to pull the text out of Flash, but I think that we have moved to the Search Engine SDK tool that Adobe Macromedia offers,” Cutts said. “So my hunch is that most of the search engines will standardize on using that Search Engine SDK tool to pull out the text.”

This has long been the suspicion of Flash developers and SEO professionals concerned with .swf files, but to my knowledge, this is the most direct and clear confirmation to date. The implication is simple but important: if Web developers–and specifically Flash developers–have the ability to test .swf files during development for textual SEO parameters, then Flash files can be designed to offer specific text to search engines.


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