Optimizing your Breadcrumbs for SEO

The SEO Value of Breadcrumb Navigation

Website navigation gets a lot of attention when it comes to usability and SEO.

If my own experience with hundreds of websites is any indication, that fourth one likely stands out for some of you.

Do Breadcrumbs impact SEO?

Yes.  As with most on-page content, when breadcrumbs are properly optimized they can improve the overall SEO health and usability of your site in a few ways:

  • Breadcrumbs influence triggering site hierarchy in your search results
  • Improves a Search Engine’s ability of crawl your site
  • Improves a Search Engine’s ability to attribute links more efficiently based on site hierarchy
  • Improves and supplements the usability of your complex navigation

How do I optimize my Breadcrumbs for SEO?


  1. Ensure that your breadcrumbs are accurately displaying across your site with an accurate category hierarchy
  2. Add structured markup to your breadcrumbs using the BreadcrumbList schema
  3. Follow Google’s guidelines on Breadcrumb optimization.

Matt Cutts also provided some insight into why, if you already have Breadcrumbs on your site, why it may not be showing in search results: