Top reasons why interactive Flash maps are better than
old image maps
Before anyone can dive into the intricacies of why interactive
flash maps are much better than old image maps, one should first have
a clear understanding of why theyre using maps in the first place.
In its simplest, most basic form, the main purpose of an image map could
either be a tool to show directions to a certain geographical location
just like a traditional map would, or it could be used to highlight a
specific point of interest that the business would want visitors and potential
customers to focus on.
In this new age of digital connectivity between a user and a website,
interactivity is definitely a major factor that can spell the success
of failure of that particular website. Sites which have nothing but some
old low-resolution graphics or image maps as their sole eye candies are
slowly being driven out of web rankings and into oblivion. Highly
interactive flash maps with clickable
navigation and a whole chest full of added features (that no old image
maps could ever accomplish) can provide your website with a highly effective
online presentation of your establishment, store, products or services
and draw in the most important element in any business -- paying customers!
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with the Old
There was a time when the only guide potential customers can use to help
them locate your store or business is a short strip of text describing
your brick and mortar address. Then somebody thought of adding more visual
features and scanned creased paper maps or product images which barely
highlight where and what the product or business really is. As webmasters
became more creative, image maps were soon developed as jpeg or gif images,
which were later improved with HTML or Java Scripts to make it more clickable
The problem is jpeg and html is limited and restricted and could only
do so much as linking portions of the image map to another URL or page.
Interactivity as well as visual features are limited and to some extent
it would not be appealing to visitors. But what if the potential client
is coming from a location that is much farther away and is not familiar
with the vicinity? What if youre inviting them to your specific
spot in a maze of offices or marketing your booth in a trade show joined
in by hundreds of other presenters and businesses? What would be needed
is the whole range of interactive features that flash maps could provide.
In with the New
Digital web imagery has gone a long way and with the advent of interactive
flash maps web browsing has never been the same. These maps can provide
a better navigational tool for users, giving their visit a fully interactive
element that they would enjoy. Aside from the clickable functionality,
these maps can provide smoother animation, amazing
transition effects, mouse-over tool tips, hint boxes, text boxes,
a dynamic display of landmarks, icons,
and a whole lot more of useful features that users can use.
Interactive flash maps can be customized to increase navigational functionality
so users can know exactly where to find your store, office or branch as
well as highlight routes and landmarks for fast and easy reference --
a virtual locator that would make it easier for potential clients to find
your business. The interactive flash map can also be incorporated with
a search tool so that off-state customers can find a branch or an office
that would be near them as easy as clicking a button.
Not only that, users can use any
image which can be embedded with interactive flash imagery to highlight
specific focus areas relevant to your product or service. Such tools
can be used to more effectively present the main feature of a product
with interactive effects, or it can be used as a customized directional
tool to tell clients exactly where your office or trade show booth is.
The search functionality can also be used in the real estate business
selling properties: houses, buildings or land. A map can be generated
for each property you are selling and a simple search query can initiate
that map, showing potential clients the directions on how to go there.
Other functionalities can showcase additional info about the property,
as well as information on landmarks and other establishments in the vicinity
of the property. These same functionalities can also be applied by businesses
related to the tourism or hospitality field.
The Future of Interactive Flash Maps
The multi-faceted and highly interactive features of flash maps make
them a more preferred element in websites in need of such maps that using
traditional static image maps. Developments in these technologies can
bring this a notch higher, particularly in providing 3D views to certain
elements in the map. With 3D features, not only can one locate the exact
location of an establishment they are looking for, but an interactive
3D image of the establishment itself can even be provided. This would
be a whole new level of interactivity that visitors to a site would surely
Related articles in Wikihow:
How to create an interactive map using iMapBuilder
How to create a multi-language site using A4Desk
How to sell music from your website using A4Desk Flash Music Player
How to create video player using A4Desk Flash Video Player
How to create thumbnail gallery using A4Desk Flash Photo Gallery
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