Skip to content

Are breadcrumbs good for SEO?


Profile Pic
Mitchell Thomas
Background Ink Splatter
Featured Image Background
Featured Image Background
Background Texture
Background Texture
Background Texture

When it comes to search engine optimisation, every little detail matters. One particular aspect that often gets overlooked is the use of breadcrumbs on websites. Breadcrumbs, in terms of digital marketing, are a navigation tool that helps users and search engines understand the structure of a website. But the question remains: are breadcrumbs good for SEO?


What are breadcrumbs for SEO?


Necessary for any website.

Breadcrumbs are a textual link hierarchy that appears on web pages, typically near the top of the page or under the main navigation bar. They provide a pathway for users to trace their steps back to the homepage or parent category. The most common example of a breadcrumb trail is: Home > Category > Subcategory > Page. Each segment acts as a clickable link that allows users to easily navigate back to previous pages.

Breadcrumbs for SEO are more than just navigation support though. They are structured data that helps search engines understand the hierarchical structure of a website. By implementing breadcrumbs correctly, you can provide search engines with valuable information about the relationship between your pages, which can positively impact your website’s visibility in search results.

Breadcrumbs play an essential role in enhancing the user experience and improving website navigation. These subtle yet effective tools help visitors find their way around your site while also providing valuable information to search engines.


Types of breadcrumbs in SEO


There are three main types of breadcrumbs commonly used in SEO:


1. Location breadcrumbs


These breadcrumbs show the user’s current location within the website’s hierarchy. For instance, Home > Category > Subcategory.

2. Attribute breadcrumbs


Attribute breadcrumbs provide additional information about a specific page’s attributes, such as filters or sorting options. An example of this would be Home > Category > Brand > Product.

3. History breadcrumbs


History breadcrumbs track the user’s navigational history and display their path in reverse order. This helps users retrace their steps and easily backtrack if needed. An example could be Home > Category > Subcategory > Product > Previous Page.


Benefits of breadcrumbs in SEO


Enhanced search engine visibility


By providing search engines with structured data through breadcrumbs, you enable them to understand the relationship between your pages. This can potentially lead to better indexing and higher visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs).

Increased click-through rates (CTR)


Breadcrumbs in search results act as an additional piece of information for users. They can make your listings more attractive and relevant, potentially increasing the likelihood of users clicking through to your website.

Lower bounce rates


Breadcrumbs also enhance the user experience by providing easy navigation and improving website usability. When users can quickly find their way around a website, they are more likely to stay longer and explore further. Lower bounce rates indicate to search engines that a website offers valuable content, potentially leading to higher rankings in search results.

Improved site structure


Breadcrumbs provide a clear and hierarchical structure of a website, making it easier for search engine crawlers to navigate and understand the content. It helps search engines establish the relationship between different pages and categories, ultimately improving the indexation process.

Seamless user experience


Breadcrumbs provide a convenient way for users to navigate your website and understand its structure. They reduce the frustration of getting lost and make it easier for visitors to find relevant content, resulting in a better overall user experience.

Keyword-rich anchor text


Breadcrumbs often include relevant keywords that describe the category or subcategory of a page. This provides additional context for search engines to understand the content of the page and its relevance to specific search queries. Keyword-rich anchor text also enhances the chances of ranking for those keywords. Winner-winner.

Internal linking


Breadcrumbs act as internal links, creating a network of interconnected pages within a website. Internal linking is crucial for SEO, as it helps distribute link authority and promotes better indexation of pages. Breadcrumbs provide an additional layer of interlinking throughout the website, facilitating search engine crawlers to discover and index pages more efficiently.

Mobile friendliness


With the rise of mobile browsing, breadcrumbs play a vital role in enhancing the user experience on smaller screens. They provide a compact and concise navigation trail that doesn’t take up much screen space. 


How to implement SEO breadcrumbs on your website


Breadcrumbs aren’t rocket science. Any Technical SEO specialist should be able to do this for you. But if you want to give it a crack yourself, to implement breadcrumbs on your website you have several options:


1. Use HTML and CSS


This method requires basic coding knowledge. You can create breadcrumb navigation by using HTML lists and applying CSS styling to achieve the desired visual presentation.

2. Utilise plugins or themes


If you are using a content management system (CMS) such as WordPress, many plugins and themes offer breadcrumb functionality. These tools often provide customisation options and simplify the implementation process.

3. Leverage structured data markup


By adding breadcrumb schema markup to your web pages, you can explicitly define the breadcrumb trail for search engines. This ensures proper interpretation and display of breadcrumbs in search results.


Are breadcrumbs good for SEO? No, they’re not ‘good’ for SEO. They’re necessary. From a user perspective, breadcrumbs enhance the browsing experience and make it easier to navigate a website, especially if it has a complex structure. Users can understand their current location within the site and quickly jump to a higher-level category or the homepage if needed. Breadcrumbs also improve website crawlability, support keyword targeting, facilitate internal linking and contribute to a mobile-responsive website. Implementing breadcrumbs on your website are a small but valuable step toward optimising your site for search engines and providing a seamless experience for your users. In my opinion, this is one of the top 10 Technical SEO factors every SEO agency should be implementing. Period.


Get the latest insights and tips straight to your inbox