Breadcrumbs in SEO

Breadcrumbs in SEO

Breadcrumbs are an important part of a website which not only tells users where they are on your website. It works as little navigational aids to the people, breadcrumbs in SEO also helps Google to understand the website structure. Hence it makes sense to add such helpful pointers.


What are Breadcrumbs?

Types of Breadcrumbs

  • Hierarchy-Based Breadcrumbs
  • Attribute-Based Breadcrumbs
  • History-Based Breadcrumbs

How to implement breadcrumbs in CMS?

  • Use Yoast SEO
  • WordPress Plugins
  • WooCommerce Breadcrumb Plugin

Benefits of Breadcrumbs for SEO

  • Loved by Search Engines
  • Enhances the user experience
  • Better Site Ranking
  • Reduces the bounce rate

Things to avoid when using Breadcrumbs for SEO

  • The small size of the font
  • Wrong Position
  • Navigation bar Repetition
  • The wrong type of Breadcrumb


What are Breadcrumbs in SEO?

Breadcrumbs are navigational aids (small text written on the top of your website ideally it lies above the H1 tag of the page) on your web page that tells your user about where they are landing on the website.

Why is such text navigation called breadcrumb? The idea is borrowed from a tale where two kids Hansel and Gretel drop a trail of breadcrumbs to trace their way back. As a result of this strategy, if you’ve reached the wrong page that you don’t want to be on, you can easily go back to the desired page on the website in a click or two.

example of breadcrumb
example of breadcrumb MSN

A breadcrumb also appears in SERP. It is beneficial for you to use plugins i.e. Yoast or you simply use Google structure data to add structure data to your site. It results in a better understanding to the user about where the required information sits on your website that he/she is looking for.

Types of Breadcrumbs

There are different types of breadcrumbs, but the most common are given below:

Hierarchy-Based Breadcrumbs

It is also known as location-based Breadcrumbs. Hierarchy-based breadcrumbs allow users to go to a level-higher page of the website that results in better interaction with the site.

Hierarchy based breadcrumb
Hierarchy based breadcrumb MSN

Attribute-Based Breadcrumbs

Attribute-Based Breadcrumbs are mostly seen on e-commerce websites. In this trail of breadcrumb is made of different product attributes i.e.  > Home > Product Category > Size > Color.

attribute based breadcrumb
attribute-based breadcrumb Example

History-Based Breadcrumbs

It works as a back button for a webpage. History-based Breadcrumbs allow the user to go back to the previous state of the website. You can simply jump from one page to the previous one without having the chance to get lost on the website.


How to implement breadcrumbs in CMS?

Using Breadcrumb is very useful for a search engine to understand the website. Here are several ways to implement it. A few of them are given below:

Use Yoast

If you are using a Yoast plugin for your website then you are just a few steps away to add breadcrumbs to the site.

breadcrumb Yoast
breadcrumb Yoast MSN

WordPress Plugins

If you use WordPress there are several plugins to add breadcrumb to the site i.e. Flexy Breadcrumb, Breadcrumb NavXT. Using these plugins you can add customized breadcrumbs as it is much easier to use.

breadcrumb plugins
breadcrumb plugins for WordPress

WooCommerce Breadcrumb Plugin

An e-commerce website can use WooCommerce Breadcrumb Plugin as it allows easy customization for the Breadcrumbs.

woo commerce breadcrumb
woo commerce breadcrumb MSN Global

Benefits of Breadcrumbs for SEO

There are many benefits of using small text navigation aids on your website. Let’s have a quick look at a few of them:

Loved by Search Engines

Users of your site love breadcrumbs so Google likes it. These small navigation aids help Google to understand your website structure better and it may result in appearing in SERP by Google/Search Engines too. Such activity may drive more traffic to your website because it will help the user to understand your site structure well.

Enhances the user experience

People feel comfortable visiting new sites when there are some landmarks nearby because it reduces the chance for someone to get lost in the place. Hence having such small navigations results in a better user experience on your site.

Better Site Ranking

Usage of breadcrumbs improves user experience and it also improves the reputation of the website in Google’s eye. The use of such a technique helps your site rank better in SERP.

Reduces the bounce rate

It may not be a direct ranking factor for a site but can directly impact the SEO of a website. A higher bounce rate can be lowered with the help of Breadcrumb on the site which can tell the user about its current position on the site. If the user is on the page where he never wants to he/she can simply go back to the homepage of your website rather than on SERP.

Things to avoid when using Breadcrumbs for SEO

Adding breadcrumbs is a simple way to enhance/improve a website’s SEO and UX. However, sometimes implementing Breadcrumb could do more harm than good to the site. Some of the things you’ll want to avoid are given below:

The small size of the font

Small font for the navigational text is okay, but too small navigational aids are not of any use because it’s hard to click on them to move to the desired location particularly on mobile devices.

Wrong Position

Putting it in the wrong position will bring no good to your website. The position of the Breadcrumb is important; it should be right above the title of the web page.

Navigation bar Repetition

The repetition of the Navigation bar is not a good idea to stick to. If you already have a Navigation Bar with the same name it’ll serve no purpose, but do confuse the user in choosing between them.

The wrong type of Breadcrumb

If your website doesn’t use nested structure do not use Location-Based Breadcrumbs. First, we should have to understand the structure of the website, for example; considering the scenario discussed above you can use History-Based Breadcrumb.


Despite using breadcrumbs as a way back home, Hansel and Gretel got lost in the jungle. Don’t let the same happen to your visitors. The right type of breadcrumb usage can assist your visitors to better navigate to the site. Search Engine likes it about the site and it might reward the effort done. If you are using Yoast for your website, it assists you more than just breadcrumb and that is SEO.

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