Breadcrumbs are dehydrated break particles, typically used to coat fish balls, fritters, and cheese sticks for a crunchy effect. Well, guess what? That isn’t the topic of today’s blog!
In terms of website design, breadcrumbs are navigational trails that make the site smoother to steer through. The professionals at a renowned website development company will tell you that breadcrumbs are crucial for SEO, so not implementing them on your website design is not the best idea.
Think about it this way – getting lost in a crowded supermarket while grocery shopping with our parents due to accidentally losing our grip on our parents’ hands is a memory we all share in common. We frantically begin to look around for signs or familiar landmarks in such situations.
Similarly, every website development company designs separate web pages dedicated to various products, making it similar to a big supermarket. The overwhelming amount of information on a website can cause visitors to feel lost, which, when combined with the frustration of dealing with it, is often enough to cause them to leave the website for good.
Now that we have clarified your fundamental understanding of breadcrumb navigation, let’s get right to the heart of the matter and learn much more about it.
Breadcrumbs are website links found near the top of a website or just below the main navigation bar. It is a secondary navigation system that helps the visitor understand the relationship between their current location on a webpage and how they have ended up where they are. This way, if the visitor has landed upon a page that doesn’t contain the information they are looking for, they have the option to either navigate back to the homepage or go back a step or two and start over.
The term is borrowed from the famous German fairytale of Hansel and Gretel. The tale depicts Hansel and Gretel as siblings who find themselves abandoned in a forest. So they drop a trail of breadcrumbs onto the ground to trace their way back to home.
The 3 genres of breadcrumb navigation are explained below, along with their functionality.
History-based breadcrumb navigation: They are also called path-based breadcrumbs. The path provides links to subpages that have been already visited on a website. They serve as an alternative to your internet’s history bar and duplicate the backward and forward arrows of the browser. The format of history-based breadcrumb navigation looks like this: Home > Previous page > Previous page > Previous page > Current page.
Attribute-based breadcrumb navigation: Most website development companies use attribute-based breadcrumbs for e-commerce sites to facilitate the users to filter the search results. They usually appear in this format: Home > Product category > Gender > Size > Color.
Hierarchy-based breadcrumb navigation: They tell you where you are in the architecture of the website structure and how many steps there are to get back to the homepage/parent page. For example, when you click on https://www.promotedge.com/services/website-development/ecommerce-website-design/, you will be taken to a webpage with breadcrumbs that reads as Home > Branding and Digital Marketing Services > Website Development > Ecommerce website design. Hierarchy-based breadcrumbs usually take the following format: Home > Category > Subcategory > Page.