Website tree structure. Definition and best practice

site design errors

What is a website tree structure?

Through our Web Agency Optimize 360

Tree website

The tree structure of a site represents the structure of the site and the way in which the information is organised across the different pages.

This structure must comply with certain rules in order to be clearly identified by search engines and increase your chances of being well referenced and having a good user experience ( UX )

This is the skeleton of your website.

It is essential that it has a clear tree structure for an optimal browsing experience, a pleasant browsing experience and contributes to the good SEO of your website.

Here are a few best practices.

Website tree structure

How do you create a website tree structure?

1. A solid architecture

The architecture of a website is like the skeleton of a building: it only takes one design flaw for the whole thing to collapse.

It requires careful planning, because it determines how the different content will appear and how it will interact.

As a result, information needs to be prioritised in the most effective way for each user.

They need to be able to find what they want, when they want it and where they want it, while navigating the site with ease. Poor design will discourage visitors from finding what they're looking for, leading them to leave the site.

To understand the site's tree structure, you first need to understand its users and their habits (their search criteria and choices).

Only then can you provide them with the right references to help them navigate the site.

Each page should be seen as a signpost guiding visitors through the site.

Mobile browsing requires even more thought than traditional desktop web browsing

2. Impeccable visual organisation

It's important to keep things simple when designing websites.

If there are too many distractions, web users won't be able to take action or find what they're looking for.

Don't lose sight of the fact that your aim is to accompany your visitors on their journey and help them navigate your site.

When it comes to site organisation, aim for simplicity, sobriety and clarity.

Examine each element of the site and ask yourself whether it is really justified and necessary.

Finally, give priority to a visual hierarchy for your website tree structure.

Make sure that the main navigation and interactive elements stand out from the rest of the page, while secondary content remains in the background.

You should also make sure that headlines and calls to action (CTAs) are highlighted.

The importance of your website's tree structure for UX and SEO

Improving your referencing allows you to acquire qualified traffic on your website.

Making things easier for both the user and the indexing robots are therefore two essential elements for both UX (User Experience) and SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). referencing natural )

Here is some advice from our SEO agency to do this:

Use a main navigation bar and a secondary navigation bar

which appears when you move your mouse over each page.

Use one main menu and one sub-menu

can be a children's menu item or a completely different menu item.

Best practice in terms of tree structure is to have a maximum of three levels of hierarchy, and ideally one or two.

The deepest pages on your site are generally not that important for crawlers. However, they may be very well placed, but they are likely to be crawled less frequently.

Use a good URL structure

which reflects the architecture of the tree structure.

The URL should be short and easy to remember.

As a general rule, it should be less than 30 characters long.

When users click on a link, they expect to see something related to what they have clicked.

For example, if someone clicks on "About us", they expect to see information about the company.

If the URL is too long, users won't bother clicking on it.

Optimise your internal links

which also contributes to the good positioning of your pages.

When creating internal links, remember to use quality anchor text. We recommend linking to pages with a certain degree of semantic proximity.

Once your tree structure is ready, you can create your sitemap (site map with the list of URLs to be indexed).

A website's tree structure is not something you define lightly.

For a online shopHaving a website is synonymous with success and performance. It's best to call on an SEO Agency to help you.

Choosing the right SEO agency is essential.

Our agency Optimize 360 can help you create a high-quality architecture for optimum visibility and site ergonomics.

Think Semantic Cocoon

Try to structure your site tree by logical and coherent semantic silos in order to verticalise the themes and indicate to the indexing robots this same vertical logic of business, services or product categories when it comes to a site. E-Commerce.

Provide the right information for search engine spiders

Search engine robots follow links within a website to find information relevant to user queries.

They also follow links in and out of a website to see if they can find new resources related to the subject they are looking for. To do this, they browse the entire internet, reading every web page.

A well-designed website has a clear structure and lets Google know exactly what your site is about. It's important to keep track of changes to your site so that Google can continue to understand what it's about, even after years of development.

Get sitelinks in SERP results

A sitelink is a link that completes a search result and appears above the company's main URL, not below it.

While the user can click on the main URL to visit the company's home page, these "companion links" are intended to provide additional options:

Search engine spiders crawl the entire website, and having several destinations on a single page helps them to find every piece of information about your company.

When someone clicks on a link in the sidebar, they go directly to that page without having to browse the rest of the site.

The side bars are an important part of any referencing strategy because they increase traffic and conversions.

    • Visitors find the right pages or information more quickly, which reduces the conversion funnel and increases the chances of turning your site into a customer.
    • They help to increase the visibility of your site and your company's reputation.
    • They promote an excellent click-through rate

Sitelinks are extremely useful. They can help to increase conversion rates and improve the user experience.

However, if your website does not have an appropriate sitemaps, users who click on a site link may encounter problems.

To avoid these problems, make sure that your sitemaps are correctly configured. Also make sure that your sitemaps contain relevant information about each page, so that Google knows which pages should be linked.

The importance of a breadcrumb trail in the tree structure of a website

A breadcrumb trail is a secondary navigation element that shows the pages of a website, generally following the site's tree structure.

This is a small piece of text that appears at the top of the web page and tells visitors where they are on the site.

Example on our Optimize 360 site: Home Page / Your needs / SEO Natural referencing

By following the breadcrumb trail, users can navigate the site by clicking on the various links, and return to the previous level or previous pages.

It also plays an important role in search engine optimisation. You mustn't neglect it!

The different types of breadcrumb

A classic, static breadcrumb navigation system

This breadcrumb trail follows the standard hierarchy of the website tree structure.

It must respect the page hierarchy by following the links from one page to the next.

Breadcrumbs are useful for users who navigate websites by clicking on links.

They allow them to know exactly where they are on the page at any given time and to move on to higher levels if necessary.

A dynamic breadcrumb trail based on the user's journey through the site.

Breadcrumbs can also be dynamic.

For example, they can change according to the user's path and browsing history, or evolve dynamically according to the user's actions.

If the person takes a different route, the breadcrumb trail adapts:

Static breadcrumb trail with dynamic attributes

Useful for both online shops and blogs, there is also a dynamic breadcrumb trail that indicates the attributes selected by the visitor.

More complex to set up, it is particularly relevant for sites that use the standard tree structure but adapt to visitor selections.

The benefits of a breadcrumb trail on a website

It offers many advantages, particularly in terms of referencing and ergonomics.

The best tools for creating a website tree structure

There are several tools available to help you structure and prioritise your website. Some of these tools allow you to visualise the structure of your website, while others give you a detailed idea of your site's architecture.


is an extremely powerful tool for visualising websites. It lets you easily create mind maps and site trees.

There are several other mapping tools that can help you create a tree structure.

FlowMapp :


Slickplan :



About the author

Frédéric POULET is the founder of the SEO Agency Optimize 360 After 20 years in large groups, he founded Optimize 360 to put the know-how of large groups to work for SMEs.
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