Making the Transition from Flash to HTML5

Flash to HTML5

The predictions have come to fruition. Flash is no longer the “go to” technology for building dynamic display ads.  There is a transition from Adobe Flash to HTML5. In February, Google began automatically converting Adobe Flash Tags to HTML5. In September, Chrome will begin pausing all non-essential flash assets, including ads. Otherwise visually dynamic ads will instead be seen as static images with a play button. Since this creates another barrier for users to click through and view animated ads, it is critical that brands and agencies make the needed adjustments to their creative.

Designers say Flash is easy to use to build rich media display ads, since it has a similar developmental tool to Photoshop. But Flash has been accused of hindering user experience, causing SEO issues, making it necessary to design creative differently for all possible devices and most importantly, posing a threat to computer security.

The value in HTML5

The flexibility offered by HTML5 allows advertisers to run the same creative across multiple platforms without relying on third-party plug ins or special files. Additionally, it is supported on mobile devices and has the ability to support audio and video tags.

Some of the best additions in HTML5 include:

  • Easy media playback, such as video and audio
  • Support for image manipulation
  • More emphasis on styling capabilities to enable the creation of beautiful web designs
  • Enhancements to forms (such as the ability to put placeholder text in an input field to specify the type of data that field should contain)
  • Can create web pages that support the latest technology across web browsers

Why make the switch? In short, advertisers that continue to run flash ads will essentially be wasting a large portion of their budget while their carefully crafted ad appears as a grey box.

Need To Know:

  • It’s critical for creative developers grow their HTML5 skills and start making the transition now. The technology is an essential piece of responsive web design.  
  • Yes, it will cost money to convert existing flash creative to HTML5 files.
  • Additional QA will be required as different browsers support different features which makes cross browser testing more critical than ever.
  • Agencies need to make sure their ad networks are providing and hosting HTML5 ad creative.
  • Brands need to ask their agencies if they made the transition to HTML5. If not, how do they plan to address the issue?

Make sure you and your team are well prepared for these changes for a smooth transition.


photo: flickr, anonymous account