Breadcrumbs are widely used for website navigation from a long time but recently Google updated it’s search algorithm for breadcrumb. According to that update website which have breadcrumb are more likely to appear in search results. Google also replaced url with breadcrumb for some websites (which supports dynamic breadcrumb), an example is given below:
Breadcrumbs are actually a set of internal hyperlinks that allow users to jump from child pages to parent pages, which simply enhance ease of navigation. Sometimes breadcrumbs are used to show path of current page. You can say breadcrumb are alternate navigation method for visitor.
Importance of Breadcrumb in Search Rank
We often find breadcrumbs in hierarchical manner to organize pages. Page dept can be determined by breadcrumb, generally two links in a breadcrumb are separated by “>” (symbol). They are getting more common with extensive content.
Previous visitors use URL to find page dept or current page position. It work fine with blog and some small websites but you can’t get page location with URL in eCommerce websites, since their URLs are too bulky and include lot of filtering parameters. Breadcrumbs are must for eCommerce and portal websites. Organized categories, subcategories and lading pages form a ideal structure for breadcrumbs.
Now the question is, Which breadcrumb structure is right for you? First figure out website category and then make strategies to organize web content like categories, pages, landing pages etc. Based on your website requirement you can opt best fit breadcrumb.
Faster Navigation – The primary motto to introduce breadcrumb is to speed up website navigation. Using structured URL’s it get easier to reach destination pages and switch between pages in single click.
Better UI (User Interface) – Breadcrumb enhance website navigation capabilities, and results in better user interface.
Look Interesting – On top of the page you can see all the previous category URL. Visitors also get aware of content structure, which also looks interesting.
Improve Site Traffic – Now search engines consider breadcrumbs as one of search factor. Basically search engine follow links since breadcrumb are purely website internal links, it results good search rank and more traffic. Chances of clicking high level pages in breadcrumb get higher for visitors from search engine.
Reduce Bounce Rate – Breadcrumbs offer seamless navigation, better user interface, make landing page address more attractive, improve website traffic. All these factors finally help reduced bounce rate.
There are some common symbols which are used to separate the breadcrumbs. The mathematics “>” (greater then) symbol used to indicate hierarchy of parent to child category and landing pages. Some people use arrow (->), slashes (/) etc. It purely depend on website and developer what they want to use.
Generally breadcrumb appears before page content starts. Place after main menu is ideal to place breadcrumb, more users will notice breadcrumb at top and may use this features. Make sure they aren’t covering more space of page, try to keep it smaller and thin.
The Final Word – Breadcrumb is a great way to navigate your website pages. You will get good response from visitors as well as search engine. Clean, simple and well structured breadcrumbs are ideal for all kind of websites.