Breadcrumbs are important for website navigation, especially if the website consists of a lot of pages. These navigation aids improve the ease at which information can be found. Not only do they help visitors to visualise their location within a website, but also help crawlers to determine the site structure. This blog highlights the importance of breadcrumbs in SEO and how to add them.
Breadcrumb or a breadcrumb trail is a type of secondary navigation which visualizes the user’s location with the help of a small text path, usually located at the top of a page. It allows the user to track their path from the page which they are currently on to the homepage of a website. Breadcrumbs are an important on page search engine optimisation technique. When used properly, site breadcrumbs provide an overview of the website structure and improve the overall user experience and the designing of your website.
Types of breadcrumbs in seo
- Location-based: These are the most common type of breadcrumbs used on websites. These show the user where exactly they are in the website’s hierarchy. This is why location-based breadcrumbs are also called hierarchy-based breadcrumbs. They are mostly used in websites that have multiple levels. These are one of the most important kind of breadcrumbs in SEO. They look something like this: Home > Blogs > Category > Post name.
- Attribute based: They are also called keyword breadcrumbs and are similar to location based ones. But instead of using page titles or unique identifiers for web pages as in the case of location breadcrumbs, they use keywords and attributes. Attribute based keywords are commonly used on e-commerce websites. They look something like this: Home > Product category > Size > Color.
- Path based: As the name suggests, path based breadcrumbs show the path that the user has taken to get to the webpage. These show the various paths that can be used to access a particular webpage. They are also called history based breadcrumbs as they show the web pages that the user visited before arriving on the current one. They look something like this: Home > Previous page > Previous page > Current page.
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Benefits of using breadcrumbs
Breadcrumbs are helpful to users as well as search engines. They allow users to trace their path and visit similar pages. For search engines, they create a website structure which is easy to crawl and index. Mentioned below are a few benefits of using breadcrumbs:
1. Advantages for users of a website
- Easy navigation: Breadcrumbs give users a secondary navigation channel. By using bread crumbs you can easily navigate through large multilevel websites.
- Help users to understand the layout of a website: One of the benefits of using breadcrumbs is that they enable users to understand the layout of a website. It makes it easy for them to access similar pages of interest. Thus, allowing users to access the content at a faster rate. This also reduces bounce rates.
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2. Advantages of breadcrumbs in seo
- Improve linking structure: Breadcrumbs are an important on page Search Engine Optimisation technique. This is because they improve a website’s overall linking structure. When used with contextual link building, they create a strong linking strategy.
- Designate keywords to pages: Breadcrumbs designate keywords to certain pages. This helps search engines understand how different pages on a website are interrelated.
How to add breadcrumbs to website
There are two ways to add breadcrumbs to a website:
- Use a plugin: To add breadcrumbs to a wordpress site, you can install a breadcrumb plugin. Two of the popular plugins include Yoast SEO and Breadcrumb NavXT. All you have to do is add a function to the WordPress theme’s header.php file.
- Add HTML or CSS codes: If you have a highly customised website or use a different CMS than WordPress then you can write your own custom function or add HTML or CSS codes into your website.
Breadcrumbs offer a number of benefits. Not only they improve the way your website is displayed in search engines but also make it easier for visitors to navigate through a website. It is important to remember that breadcrumbs are secondary navigation and should never replace primary navigation. With all the benefits of using breadcrumbs in SEO, there’s no reason you should not use them.