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Breadcrumb Navigation

March 26, 2006

Q) What is Breadcrumb Navigation, and why should I use it in my web site?

A) Breadcrumb Navigation improves the customer’s ability to find your products/offerings. It is like the “You are Here” circle on the Mall map.

I am not a big fan of mall shopping, so I head straight for the map to gain my bearings. It gives me a sense of where I am in relation to other parts of the mall. Breadcrumb navigation accomplishes this for our users – especially ones who do not like shopping on the Internet. We have seen breadcrumb navigation like this while surfing the web. Example of Breadcrumb Navigation Each part of the Breadcrumb Navigation represents a level of the website. In this example, we can see that we are “3 levels deep” in the website. By clicking on any of the levels within the navigation we are immediately transported rather than figuring out how many times we need to hit the back button to get where we want to be.

Breadcrumb Navigation is Great for any Size Website

Breadcrumb navigation is for more than just hulking ecommerce sites like Amazon and the Yahoo Directory. Even if our site is relatively small, the user does not know that – they just know that they may or may not find the answer to their question here.

Breadcrumb Navigation Guards our “Side Doors”

Looking over my server logs, I have users that visit various sites from all kinds of links from search engines or other websites. When they land on my site, I want to give them an immediate orientation. For this reason malls have their maps at every entrance – to maximize every opportunity to improve the shopper’s experience.

Expert Advice on How to Use Breadcrumb Navigation

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