Breadcrumbs Web Design Examples and Best Practices

• 6 minutes READ

Breadcrumbs are a very important element in websites design. In order to do so, you can implement the breadcrumbs in your web designs. It augments the standard of your website and hence attracts the viewers to the site. Basically, these are text-based links. Normally, the font of breadcrumbs is few points smaller than the original text size of the content of the website.

When you build a website what should be your prime focus? Of course, it is the usability of the site. Be it an educational site, an eCommerce site or an informational site; you cannot ignore the significance of usability of the website.

Visitors must avail the information from the site in a hassle-free manner. If it is an eCommerce site then the viewers should not face difficulties to find out their preferred products. If they find it time-consuming to get relevant information from your site they will not hesitate to leave the site and go to the search page again to find out another competing website that is more useful for them. Hence it is important to make the site useful and effective for the visitors.

What Is The Use of Breadcrumbs?

Breadcrumbs, as the name suggests, leaves a trail for website viewers to go back to their destination in a simpler manner. The name is taken from the fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel”. Breadcrumbs are known as the text links generally found on websites on the top of the main body of the page; beneath the header or/and any banner graphics of the page, but above the content. Breadcrumbs are planned according to the page structure of your website.

For example, if you have an eCommerce shop and a viewer is on a page for refrigerators, the breadcrumb trail structure will show the main categories leading to the page and back to the home page according to their proper order of page appearance. Hence, the viewers will find the breadcrumb something like “Home>Electronics Devices>Home Appliances>Refrigerators”. This trail is typically based on the specific folder structure in the backend system of the web site. The user can go to any of the pages of the trail by clicking on the text. For example, if you want to go to homepage you can directly go there by clicking on the “home” link on the breadcrumb trail.

Breadcrumbs are mainly used as navigation menus. There are several ways through which a user can navigate different pages of a website. The navigation menus have to be user-friendly and simple. Hence breadcrumb is a brilliant idea as a navigation menu.

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Not only as navigation menus but also for the search engine optimization this is beneficial. Especially in eCommerce, where the competition can be high, getting ranked high in search engines is important. Since breadcrumbs are based on the folder structure of the website, it places keywords in more places across the entire web site. Hence, if “woolen poncho” is a popular search term in your industry Breadcrumb will create one more internal link to the relevant keyword within your website.

However, while dealing with the Breadcrumb menus, one thing you need to keep in your mind, this type of navigation should be considered as an extra feature to enhance the attraction of the site and shouldn’t replace useful primary navigation menus.

While searching for the several types of breadcrumb menus on the internet you can find location-based, attribute-based and path-based breadcrumbs navigation menus.

Breadcrumbs Design Examples


The component is crafted in black color to naturally stand out from the light background and get into focus. The textured canvas nicely collaborates with the overall artistic design. The links are quickly perceived thanks to sharp and formal typography and small gaps between each item contribute to the readability.


While all the items of UI are marked by subtle gradients, the breadcrumbs, on the contrary, sticks to more clean flat outward and monochrome backdrop. Nevertheless, it goes quite well with the others and complements the aesthetics thanks to similar coloring. The home button adds a classic appeal. Bright tones are used to delineate titles more effectively.


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Breadcrumbs by Rob Dozier magnetizes with an extremely elegant, clean and fresh appearance. Although the navigation is made in a light color scheme, yet it still catches the eye. The subtle shadow provides arrow-shaped boxes with extra visual weight thereby helping them stand out from the noised background. To clearly indicate the current position, the last item is presented as a simple inscription.

Breadcrumbs / Error

Breadcrumbs/Error by Jason Mayo is a streamlined navigation bar with no gaps or impressive features. It harmoniously blends with the composition, becoming an essential detail of the UI. However, an embossed effect saves the day. It supplies each block and title with clearer and sharper appearance. Violet that is a part of the primary color palette is applied to highlight the actual page.

Design Fundamentals

Allison House ditches all the classic arrow-shaped details and just goes for more simplistic and elegant features. Thus, the component looks natural and intuitive and has a strong educational style that is required for the project. Each block includes a title that is bolstered by an accompanying icon.


Much like the previous example, Michal Vasko arranges all the links into a row abandoning graphic details in favor of typography. Items are separated by tiny minimalistic arrows that due to blue color unobtrusively show the direction. However, since the element is seamlessly integrated into the design and gray color does not stand in stark contrast to the backdrop it can be easily lost out of sight.

JomSocial Template

JomSocial Template is quite another matter. The breadcrumbs navigation has a great visual weight because of its relatively huge size and bright coloring. It strikes the eye without overwhelming users. Mohd Izuddin Helmi manipulates with distinctive typeface, inner shadow, solid home button and some gentle gradients to achieve an impressive result.

Search and Sort your Breadcrumbs

This is a quite basic example, yet it has a right to exist. It is the simplest way to show users their movements across the project. Although it is deprived of beautiful appearance and needs sone sprucing up, yet, it serves its role quite well. It includes all the common features: titles, arrows for direction and even highlighting color thereby providing visitors with a viable navigation assistant.

Image Gallery Management

The breadcrumbs navigation gives off sleekness and clarity. It has a clean, and detailed look that is obtained from crafty work with typography, whitespace, and background. The last item has bolder letterforms in contrast to others in order to direct the attention to the relevant page. Although the navigation maintains a simplistic feel, yet it has charm and fits like a glove here. redesign

Aaron Moody has vigilantly created the front-end of the website where the breadcrumbs take its rightful place and have a neat, sophisticated and trendy appearance. The navigation complements the overall design and catches the mood of the project. Dark coloring with a splash of warm orange shade outlines the component and evokes positive emotions.


As an optional navigation aid that not only supports the main menu but also reveals the hierarchy and shows the path to the current section, breadcrumbs are a powerful instrument to enhance user experience.

However, unfortunately, it quite often remains overlooked in terms of design, though it should be treated as any common element of UI. The listed above examples stimulate users on creating beautiful and intuitive breadcrumbs that will fulfill its mission as well as won’t be a ‘black sheep’ in the design.

Andrian Valeanu

Designmodo Founder.

Posts by Andrian Valeanu
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