This week, we're pointing out website features that are used in a way that enhances both the aesthetics and usefulness of websites. To do this, I explored the WebRevelation Portfolio, for inspiration. Yesterday, we talked about choosing a website theme. Today, let's address the flash page.
Let me start by saying that I'm generally not a fan of the flash page. The flash page is that first page you come to on some websites when you type the sites main URL into your browser. It's often an annoying graphic or video that seems to be there for no other reason than to fill space. However, these flash pages can be entertaining, and for entertainment websites, they can be useful, if done properly. The can also be used as a menu to simplify the site design. Here are some examples I found.
City Brick Walk is a site focusing on an a multi-club complex in Oklahoma City's "Brick Town" district. Since the theme is entertainment, it makes sense for the flash page to be fun and entertaining, and this one is. It also effectively provides a menu to each of the clubs.
Park Avenue Grill has effectively used their flash page as a menu, and as a way to instantly familiarize new visitors with the ambiance of their restaurant. Jazzy music, with photos of the chic, elegant decor of the restaurant instantly let readers know whether or not this is the type of restaurant they are looking for.
The Reef Shop is my favorite in the flash page category. The audio is a simulated underwater sonar, and the flash page graphics are a convenient menu, with an aquarium theme. Very pretty, and practical. Well, done.
Jennifer Pointer (e-mail) is a trainer and tech writer in Tulsa, OK. She promotes a simple, a low-tech approach to effective online profile management, search engine optimization and social networking. Her weakness is the mocha frappuccino.