AMEX have been blasting out some fairly self-contradictory advice recently, according to WebProNews. They suggest that small businesses avoid employing SEO guys:
don’t waste money on so-called Search Engine Optimization (S.E.O.) specialists. Search engines are very quick to penalize sites that try to trick their filtering techniques, and once your site has been put on Google’s blacklist, it will take forever to get off.
Obviously the SEO people have been up in arms over this rather broad tarring. While of course there are many terrible SEO firms out there, and even more that over-charge, it's fairly easy for anyone to spot a dodgy outfit thanks to Google's published SEO guidelines.
Anyway, the bit where this gets "interesting" is about here, where AMEX then proceed to dish out SEO advice themselves!
using clean U.R.L.’s like yourdomain.com/store/widgets instead of yourdomain.com/store.php?id=42&categoryID= widgets will increase your chances of getting indexed in a search engine.
Sound advice indeed. Shame about the utterly conflicting points of view presented here, though. Tell you what, AMEX: how about you stick to raping me on chargeback costs, and I'll stick to what I do best, too.