Google to Use Breadcrumbs in Search Results

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By Dave Ashworth
on 18/11/09

Google have today announced they are to start using breadcrumbs within their search results snippets in order to enhance user experience.  By displaying the site's hiearchy within the results, this will show the user at what point of the site they are entering when they click through.

From the examples they use, here is how it currently looks:


As you can see, the URL of the destination page is shown with any keywords in bold.

Here is how the new URLs will look:


Personally, am not sure if this helps the user or not.  It is presumed, perhaps wrongly, that the link will take them to the page they are looking for - if Google are able to display a breadcrumb you'd also think the site you're going to will do the same. Also, if the target page is the most relevant on the site, why give the user the option to navigate away from it from within the SERPs?  So why make this change?

The cynic in me thinks that they're perhaps trying to prevent keyword spamming in page names and URLs which has become more apparent with SEO friendly URLs far more prominent these days and incredibly easy to set up using a CMS such as Joomla.

It will be interesting to see how user's react to this change and if webmasters see users coming to the site at a higher level with keywords targeted at specific deep pages.

What about you, the user - will this change the way you access a site from the search engine results pages?