I have a breadcrumb. In my system, there are cases and objects. Both of them can contain another. So case A can contain object B, object B can contain object C and so on.

There are both objects and cases list in the system so both of them may appear in the first level.

How breadcrumb should display this? Should it be A>B>C and should I allow infinite depth of this? As an alternative, I could allow to display only 2-deep relation and hide previous structure, but I think it will confuse the user.

Please note that I have more than 2 types.

  • 1
    Could you add some concrete examples?
    – Mayo
    Commented Feb 13, 2017 at 14:45
  • There's nothing wrong with different paths to the same element, it's very common. However, if A can contain B and B can contain A, I'd suggest to review the information architecture of your system or at least provide an example, because I can't think of any possible case where this could happen
    – Devin
    Commented Feb 13, 2017 at 17:59

1 Answer 1


If you look at it, the concept of breadcrumbs comes from the childhood tale Hansel & Gretel, where they use breadcrumbs to backtrack their path to their home. And the same should apply to your website/application when it comes to breadcrumbs.

If multiple paths lead to the same node, the breadcrumb should present the trail to the user through which he/she reached the current page, and not otherwise.

If it gets too cluttered at a time for you to present the complete breadcrumb due to the depth of your navigation tree, you could present the first and latest two or three and an ellipsis in-between, hovering over which, the user could see the intermediate paths somewhat as below:

breadcrumb with intermediate navigation segments

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