Breadcrumb

Breadcrumb displayed on a web page

A breadcrumb trail on a page indicates the page's position in the site hierarchy, and it may help users understand and explore a site effectively. A user can navigate all the way up in the site hierarchy, one level at a time, by starting from the last breadcrumb in the breadcrumb trail.

How to add structured data

Structured data is a standardized format for providing information about a page and classifying the page content. If you’re new to structured data, you can learn more about how structured data works.

Here's an overview of how to build, test, and release structured data. For a step-by-step guide on how to add structured data to a web page, check out the structured data codelab.

  1. Add the required properties. For information about where to put structured data on the page, watch JSON-LD structured data: Where to insert on the page.
  2. Follow the guidelines.
  3. Validate your code using the Rich Results Test.
  4. Deploy a few pages that include your structured data and use the URL Inspection tool to test how Google sees the page. Be sure that your page is accessible to Google and not blocked by a robots.txt file, the noindex tag, or login requirements. If the page looks okay, you can ask Google to recrawl your URLs.
  5. To keep Google informed of future changes, we recommend that you submit a sitemap. You can automate this with the Search Console Sitemap API.

Examples

Google Search uses breadcrumb markup in the body of a web page to categorize the information from the page in search results. Often, as illustrated in following use cases, users can arrive at a page from very different types of search queries. While each search may return the same web page, the breadcrumb categorizes the content within the context of the Google Search query. The page ancillaryjustice.html might display the following breadcrumb trails depending upon the search context.

A common way to implement breadcrumbs is to use the path part of the URL as the breadcrumb trail. Keep in mind that some parts of the URL path don't help people understand how the page fits in your website. For example, given the URL "https://example.com/pages/books/catcher_in_the_rye.html", "pages" doesn't add any information, and neither does the top level element "example.com". We recommend providing breadcrumbs that represent a typical user path to that web page, instead of mirroring the URL structure.

Single breadcrumb trail

A search query for a year and genre-based award, "2014 Nebula Award best novel", may generate the following breadcrumb:

BooksScience Fiction › Award Winners

JSON-LD

Here's an example in JSON-LD to support that breadcrumb:


<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
    <script type="application/ld+json">
    {
      "@context": "https://schema.org",
      "@type": "BreadcrumbList",
      "itemListElement": [{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 1,
        "name": "Books",
        "item": "https://example.com/books"
      },{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 2,
        "name": "Science Fiction",
        "item": "https://example.com/books/sciencefiction"
      },{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 3,
        "name": "Award Winners"
      }]
    }
    </script>
  </head>
  <body>
  </body>
</html>

RDFa

Here's an example in RDFa to support that breadcrumb:


<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <ol vocab="https://schema.org/" typeof="BreadcrumbList">
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <a property="item" typeof="WebPage"
            href="https://example.com/books">
          <span property="name">Books</span></a>
        <meta property="position" content="1">
      </li>
      ›
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <a property="item" typeof="WebPage"
            href="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction">
          <span property="name">Science Fiction</span></a>
        <meta property="position" content="2">
      </li>
      ›
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <span property="name">Award Winners</span>
        <meta property="position" content="3">
      </li>
    </ol>
  </body>
</html>

Microdata

Here's an example in Microdata to support that breadcrumb:


<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <ol itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/BreadcrumbList">
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <a itemprop="item" href="https://example.com/books">
            <span itemprop="name">Books</span></a>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="1" />
      </li>
      ›
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <a itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/WebPage"
           itemprop="item" itemid="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction"
           href="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction">
          <span itemprop="name">Science Fiction</span></a>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="2" />
      </li>
      ›
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <span itemprop="name">Award winners</span>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="3" />
      </li>
    </ol>
  </body>
</html>

HTML

Here's an example of an HTML breadcrumb block within the page as part of the visual design.

<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <ol>
      <li>
        <a href="http://www.example.com/books">Books</a>
      </li>
      <li>
        <a href="http://www.example.com/sciencefiction">Science Fiction</a>
      </li>
      <li>
        Award Winners
      </li>
    </ol>
  </body>
</html>

Multiple breadcrumb trail

If there are multiple ways to navigate to a page on your site, you can specify multiple breadcrumb trails for a single page. Here's one breadcrumb trail that leads to a page for award winning books:

BooksScience Fiction › Award Winners

Here's the another breadcrumb trail that leads to the same page:

Literature › Award Winners

JSON-LD

Here's the example JSON-LD that supports multiple breadcrumb trails:


<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
    <script type="application/ld+json">
    [{
      "@context": "https://schema.org",
      "@type": "BreadcrumbList",
      "itemListElement": [{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 1,
        "name": "Books",
        "item": "https://example.com/books"
      },{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 2,
        "name": "Science Fiction",
        "item": "https://example.com/books/sciencefiction"
      },{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 3,
        "name": "Award Winners"
      }]
    },
    {
      "@context": "https://schema.org",
      "@type": "BreadcrumbList",
      "itemListElement": [{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 1,
        "name": "Literature",
        "item": "https://example.com/literature"
      },{
        "@type": "ListItem",
        "position": 2,
        "name": "Award Winners"
      }]
    }]
    </script>
  </head>
  <body>
  </body>
</html>

RDFa

Here's the example RDFa that supports multiple breadcrumb trails:


<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <ol vocab="https://schema.org/" typeof="BreadcrumbList">
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <a property="item" typeof="WebPage"
            href="https://example.com/books">
          <span property="name">Books</span></a>
        <meta property="position" content="1">
      </li>
      ›
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <a property="item" typeof="WebPage"
            href="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction">
          <span property="name">Science Fiction</span></a>
        <meta property="position" content="2">
      </li>
      ›
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <a property="item" typeof="WebPage"
            href="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction/awardwinners">
          <span property="name">Award Winners</span></a>
        <meta property="position" content="3">
      </li>
    </ol>
    <ol vocab="https://schema.org/" typeof="BreadcrumbList">
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <a property="item" typeof="WebPage"
            href="https://example.com/literature">
          <span property="name">Literature</span></a>
        <meta property="position" content="1">
      </li>
      ›
      <li property="itemListElement" typeof="ListItem">
        <span property="name">Award Winners</span>
        <meta property="position" content="2">
      </li>
    </ol>
  </body>
</html>

Microdata

Here's the example Microdata that supports multiple breadcrumb trails:


<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <ol itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/BreadcrumbList">
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <a itemprop="item" href="https://example.com/books">
            <span itemprop="name">Books</span></a>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="1" />
      </li>
      ›
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <a itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/WebPage"
           itemprop="item" itemid="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction"
           href="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction">
          <span itemprop="name">Science Fiction</span></a>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="2" />
      </li>
      ›
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <a itemprop="item" href="https://example.com/books/sciencefiction/awardwinners">
          <span itemprop="name">Award Winners</span></a>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="3" />
      </li>
    </ol>
    <ol itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/BreadcrumbList">
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <a itemprop="item" href="https://example.com/literature">
          <span itemprop="name">Literature</span></a>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="1" />
      </li>
      ›
      <li itemprop="itemListElement" itemscope
          itemtype="https://schema.org/ListItem">
        <span itemprop="name">Award Winners</span>
        <meta itemprop="position" content="2" />
      </li>
    </ol>
  </body>
</html>

HTML

Here's an example of an HTML breadcrumb block within the page as part of the visual design.

<html>
  <head>
    <title>Award Winners</title>
  </head>
  <body>
    <ol>
      <li>
        <a href="http://www.example.com/books">Books</a>
      </li>
      <li>
        <a href="http://www.example.com/books/sciencefiction">Science Fiction</a>
      </li>
      <li>
        Award Winners
      </li>
    </ol>
    <ol>
      <li>
        <a href="http://www.example.com/literature">Literature</a>
      </li>
      <li>
        Award Winners
      </li>
    </ol>
  </body>
</html>

Guidelines

You must follow these guidelines to be eligible to appear with breadcrumbs in Google Search.

Structured data type definitions

To specify breadcrumbs, define an BreadcrumbList that contains at least two ListItems. You must include the required properties for your content to be eligible for display with breadcrumbs.

BreadcrumbList is the container item that holds all elements in the list. The full definition of BreadcrumbList is available at schema.org/BreadcrumbList.

Required properties
itemListElement

BreadcrumbList

An array of breadcrumbs listed in a specific order. Specify each breadcrumb with a ListItem For example:

{
"@context": "https://schema.org",
"@type": "BreadcrumbList",
  "itemListElement": [{
    "@type": "ListItem",
    "position": 1,
    "name": "Books",
    "item": "https://example.com/books"
  },{
    "@type": "ListItem",
    "position": 2,
    "name": "Authors",
    "item": "https://example.com/books/authors"
  },{
    "@type": "ListItem",
    "position": 3,
    "name": "Ann Leckie",
    "item": "https://example.com/books/authors/annleckie"
  }]
}

ListItem

ListItem contains details about an individual item in the list. The full definition of ListItem is available at schema.org/ListItem.

Required properties
item

URL or a subtype of Thing

The URL to the webpage that represents the breadcrumb. There are two ways to specify item:

  • URL: Specify the URL of the page. For example:
    "item": "https://example.com/books"
  • Thing: Use an id to specify the URL based on the markup format you're using:
    • JSON-LD: Use @id to specify the URL.
    • Microdata: You can use href or itemid to specify the URL.
    • RDFa: You can use about, href, or resource to specify the URL.

If the breadcrumb is the last item in the breadcrumb trail, item is not required. If item isn't included for the last item, Google uses the URL of the containing page.

name

Text

The title of the breadcrumb displayed for the user. If you're using a Thing with a name instead of a URL to specify item, then name is not required.

position

Integer

The position of the breadcrumb in the breadcrumb trail. Position 1 signifies the beginning of the trail.

Monitor rich results with Search Console

Search Console is a tool that helps you monitor how your pages perform in Google Search. You don't have to sign up for Search Console to be included in Google Search results, but it can help you understand and improve how Google sees your site. We recommend checking Search Console in the following cases:

  1. After deploying structured data for the first time
  2. After releasing new templates or updating your code
  3. Analyzing traffic periodically

After deploying structured data for the first time

After Google has indexed your pages, look for issues using the relevant Rich result status report. Ideally you should see an increase of valid pages, and no increase in errors or warnings. If you find issues in your structured data:

  1. Fix the errors.
  2. Inspect a live URL to check if the issue persists.
  3. Request validation using the status report.

After releasing new templates or updating your code

When you make significant changes to your website, monitor for increases in structured data errors and warnings.
  • If you see an increase in errors, perhaps you rolled out a new template that doesn't work, or your site interacts with the existing template in a new and bad way.
  • If you see a decrease in valid items (not matched by an increase in errors), perhaps you are no longer embedding structured data in your pages. Use the URL Inspection tool to learn what is causing the issue.

Analyzing traffic periodically

Analyze your Google Search traffic using the Performance Report. The data will show you how often your page appears as a rich result in Search, how often users click on it and what is the average position you appear on search results. You can also automatically pull these results with the Search Console API.

Troubleshooting

If you're having trouble implementing structured data, here are some resources that may help you.