The vast majority of users are using the internet for the specific purpose of finding information and they want it quick, on their terms. Flash and animation make websites look like presentations. They go against interactivity rules: users are simple observers that can not actively control and participate – flash pages don’t respond to a browser’s forward and back buttons. Taking control from the user can easily get them frustrated in which case they will move on.
Search engines are not able to see all the links and pages inside a flash website. They cannot create the architecture of the website in order to rank each page properly. Google recommends creating an html version of the site but, unless you are a big company, this can be very expensive.
Other minuses of flash websites are compatibility in different browsers, loading time, the production costs and difficulty to update and add information in the future.
So even if you might think that looks cool, a flash website most of the time is not the successful internet presence that a small business should consider.
This doesn’t mean that you should never consider flash for your website. Flash, when used properly, can enhance a particular message by shifting the balance and focus of the webpage. This only works if you minimize the usage.