Msg#: 4062880 posted 6:38 pm on Feb 14, 2010 (gmt 0)
Not only are they good for site navigation they also help users find what they are looking for if they arrive from a search engine to a page that doesn't quite give them the information they need. The breadcrumbs allow the user to go down one level and see if they can find a link to a page that contains more of the information they are looking for.
While they don't take up more room than a link normally takes below SERP listings, there's some logic to the concept that having more links appearing on a Google SERP increases your odds of having a click through to your site.
mack and others above are right - breadcrumbs are good for a site's usability, which is why Google considered them important enough to be worth developing the listing enhancement.
But, dailypress, I think you need to adjust your CMS templates so that the breadcrumb links become linked. Without linking, it's just an orientation guide, and doesn't assist users as much. (And, probably wouldn't achieve Google's special listing treatment, either.)
Msg#: 4062880 posted 5:09 am on Feb 20, 2010 (gmt 0)
I don't use breadcrumbs on my sites because I think they don't fit the associative thinking process of visitors.
Breadcrumbs limit you to a hierarchical site structure with Homepage->Mainmenu->Submenu->Topic, which always takes two hops to jump from one topic to another. Instead I prefer topic based associative linking where every topic page has direct links to related topic pages on the same site. This not only increases usability for the user, but it also adds better link juice distribution throughout the site because link juice between related topic pages (the real spider food) is not distributed via menu pages, but directly from topic to topic. It is the same way that Wikipedia distributes link juice across its pages and looking at the number of Wikipedia pages at top positions in the SERPs the approach seems to work quite well.
The downside of associative linking vs. breadcrumbs is that it requires more manual work to setup.