I decided to revisit and update this older question because of something a client recently asked me about PDFs. Originally this question dealt with SEO but as it turns out both had the same answer.
The Original Question Was:
I read in a newsletter that “articles shouldn’t be posted on Web sites as PDFs because “it will be impossible for the search engines to find them”.
I know Google displays PDF’s in it’s listing, do other search engines and what is the best way to post my articles?
My Answer Was and Still Is:
Even though some of the search engines can read PDF files, I don’t really know anyone who makes a lot of money doing it. It’s still much better for your search engine purposes to use plain old HTML Text as it ties into the entire design and structure of your website.
In Other Words:
If you are interested in using articles to try to manipulate a higher search engine ranking, use HTML Text.
If you are mostly interested in ease of use for your visitor, then pdf is OK and possibly preferred.