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Breadcrumb Navigation

link node diagram: breadcrumbs

Breadcrumb navigation shows the user's path to their current location.

Data below is from 75 leading e-commerce sites, collected in May, 2002. [sites examined]



Frequency of Breadcrumbs

45% of pages included breadcrumb navigation.

Breadcrumb navigation was expected to be a global characteristic—that is, a site would either provide breadcrumb navigation on its pages or not. However, breadcrumbs would occasionally be present on some, but not all, pages along the sample path. This inconsistency appeared to be due to incomplete updating of a site, some pages apparently having a more recent design than others.


Orientation of Breadcrumbs


95% Horizontal



breadcrumb - vertical

5% Vertical



Breadcrumb Separator (for Horizontal Breadcrumbs)

breadcrumb-right arrow
65% Right Arrow
9% Pipe
8% Colon
breadcrumb - slash
4% Slash
breadcrumb - left arrow 3% Left Arrow
breadcrumb - bullet 3% Bullet
breadcrumb - text treatment 3% Text Treatment



©Heidi P. Adkisson. 2005. All rights reserved.
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Location, Path, and Attribution Breadcrumbs
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