Since Google started showing breadcrumbs in organic search results, importance of having breadcrumbs in a website has been increased. Therefore we need to implement and optimized breadcrumbs intelligently so that Google pick and show it in Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
Before we go far let start with initial things.
What is Breadcrumbs?
Breadcrumbs or breadcrumb trail is a navigation scheme that breaks the site into text links of categories and sub-categories or it allows a user to see how the current page is in connection from the root. Breadcrumbs take very little space on the webpage and allow one click access to higher pages in the hierarchy. And it lets the user remain connected with previous pages.
Breadcrumbs appear horizontally in a web page as shown below
Types of Breadcrumbs
For website navigation there are three types of breadcrumbs
1. Path – Path breadcrumb trails are dynamic and show the path that the user has taken to get the particular webpage.
2. Location– Location breadcrumbs show the user where the current page is in the relation with the website’s hierarchy. These breadcrumbs are static.
3. Attribute– Attribute breadcrumbs provide the information on the current page or they display the attributes of a particular page.
How Google showing breadcrumbs in the search results?
If you search for “Motorola Droid” in www.google.com you can see Google showing breadcrumbs with the result page.
Similarly Google showing breadcrumbs on searching “Nokia E7” in www.google.co.in
Things to keep in mind while implementing breadcrumbs-
- Breadcrumbs must display the website hierarchy.
- Text links in the breadcrumbs should match the structure of the site.
- Make use of clear symbol for separation between each navigation.
- Breadcrumbs must contain the related keywords as per the page, this will improve content relevancy. Keywords in the breadcrumbs act as an anchor text.
- Don’t hyperlink the current page in the breadcrumbs.
Matt Cutts talks about some best practices for breadcrumbs navigation which cannot be over looked. I have added the video below.
“Make a site with a clear hierarchy and text links. Every page should be reachable from at least one static text link.” This is what Google like and appreciate. And proper breadcrumb shows how perfect your internal navigation is. So don’t ignore implementing breadcrumbs watchfully at the initial phase of website development.