How Breadcrumbs Can Boost Your Website’s User Experience
Navigation and user experience are crucial to a website’s success, so you need to know how they affect each other. Breadcrumbs allow users to easily navigate from one page of your site to another by showing where they are in the overall structure.
In this post, we’ll look at the different types of breadcrumbs and how you can use them to improve the navigation on your website. We’ll also discuss their impact on SEO.
Benefits of Using Breadcrumbs
Breadcrumbs offer several benefits for both users and website owners. Here are some of the most significant benefits:
Improved User Experience and Navigation
Breadcrumbs make it easier for users to locate information on a website. They provide structure and clarity, which improves the overall experience of visiting that site. They also help users move through the site more efficiently, which can lead to increased engagement.
Increased Accessibility for Users with Disabilities
Breadcrumbs allow users with disabilities, such as visual impairments or motor disabilities, to navigate websites. By offering an alternative way for everyone to access the information on your site—including those who use screen readers and other assistive technologies—breadcrumbs make your content more accessible.
Better Search Engine Ranking
Breadcrumbs help search engines understand the hierarchy and structure of your website, which can improve your search engine ranking. By providing clear pathways for crawlers to follow, breadcrumbs make it easier to index a website than if links or page titles were scattered throughout in no particular order.
Increased Interaction with Your Site
When users can easily navigate a website and find the information they need, they’ll spend more time on that site. This increased engagement can lead to higher conversion rates—and, consequently, an increase in revenue.
Types of Breadcrumbs
Location-based breadcrumbs show users where they are on a website, typically by showing the categories and subcategories to which the current page belongs. They’re often called “hierarchical” breadcrumbs because of this hierarchical structure.
Attribute-based breadcrumbs display the attributes of a product or service to users. They’re often used on e-commerce sites like Amazon, where products can be browsed by color, size, and price range.
Path-based breadcrumbs show users where they are within the entire website. They’re often used to help people search for content by displaying steps that lead them from a root page to their current destination.
Implementing Breadcrumbs on Your Website
- Choose the Type of Breadcrumb
When deciding how to organize your site’s navigation, consider the type of breadcrumb that will work best for readers based on their goals and experience with your content.
- Determine the Placement of Breadcrumbs
Decide where to place the breadcrumb trail on your website. It’s common to see it below the header or above the main content, but ensure you’re consistent across all pages, so users understand.
3. Add Breadcrumbs to Your Website
Adding breadcrumbs to your website is essential because they help visitors find their way around. There are several ways you can add them depending on the type and design of your website.
- Manually Code Breadcrumbs: If you have coding knowledge, you can manually code breadcrumbs into your website using HTML and CSS. This method provides more flexibility in terms of design and placement.
- Use a CMS Plugin: Many content management systems (CMS) have plugins or extensions allowing you to add breadcrumbs to your website easily. Check your CMS’s documentation or plugin marketplace for options.
- Use a Breadcrumb Generator Tool: If you’re uncomfortable with coding, you can use a breadcrumb generator tool to create the code. Enter your website’s information, and the device will generate the necessary code.
After you’ve implemented breadcrumbs on your website, testing and refining them is essential. Check for any errors or inconsistencies in the trail of links and make adjustments as needed.
Breadcrumb Design and Placement
Here are some tips to keep in mind when considering how and where to place your breadcrumbs:
Keep the Design Simple and Consistent
Breadcrumbs should be clear and consistent. To avoid customer confusion, use a simple font, color scheme, and layout on every page.
Use Proper Breadcrumb Labels
A well-designed breadcrumb trail allows visitors to quickly move through your website and understand where they are in the site hierarchy.
Make Breadcrumbs Clickable
Breadcrumbs should lead users back to a previous page or category. Make sure all breadcrumb links are visible and easy to click on
Place Breadcrumbs in a Prominent Location
Breadcrumbs are helpful navigation aids that lead visitors through a website’s hierarchical structure. They usually appear near the top of each page, below any header graphics, and above or beside the main content.
Breadcrumbs and Site Hierarchy
- Use Breadcrumbs to Establish Site Hierarchy: Breadcrumbs are a great way to help users navigate your site by showing them where they are in relation to the homepage and other pages. Use breadcrumbs to reinforce the structure of your website and make it easier for people to find what they’re looking for—instead of endlessly clicking around hoping something will work out.
- Optimize Breadcrumb Labels: Breadcrumb labels should match the structure of your website. Use category and subcategory names to create a clear hierarchy for users navigating through its pages
- Keep Hierarchy Consistent Across Your Website: Make sure the hierarchy of your website is consistent across all pages. This will help users understand the structure of your website and navigate it more easily.
Breadcrumbs are an easy way to give your site a better navigation structure by allowing users to see the hierarchical relationship between pages.
Breadcrumbs are great for helping users navigate complex websites, and they can also help boost your site’s search engine ranking. By following these best practices, you can implement breadcrumbs on your website with minimal effort.
When it comes to website design, user experience is key. Breadcrumbs can make a big difference in how users navigate and engage with your website—implement them today!
Digital Results is happy to help with your website audit, which you can use to identify and fix any issues that may be holding back your SEO. Just get in touch for a free 30-minute consultation—one of our experts will be happy to walk through this analysis process with you.