Came across Clover Sites while browsing through the advertising service known as The Deck. Clover provides pre-built websites for a flat $1000 plus $20/mo hosting. The templates are quite beautiful and the preview site itself is really wonderfully done.

Interestingly, the underlying technology is Flash. The sites are completely built in Flash, including the administration interface. The FAQ says that they use other techniques for SEO, which appears to be use of the keyword and description meta tags. This is probably adequate for the target audience: people and organizations who need simple websites who are not looking to generate massive search engine traffic for marketing purposes.

Looking through the real-world examples, I’m reminded of the drawback of simple templates: you need to keep the content simple, too. The moment you have to scroll some text, or allow the selection of a font with new metrics, is the moment where the clarity of the layout breaks a tiny bit. But that might just be me…I come from a background of interactive screen design for computer games from way back in the 1980s, and scrolling a last resort.

Still, it looks like a very nicely put-t0gether service, unlike some other Flash-based template sites. Worth passing along, I think!