Create a username
Help users to create a unique and memorable username to sign into a service with.
When to use this pattern
Before using this pattern, you should consider whether you really need users to create accounts in the first place.
How it works
Where possible, use email addresses for usernames because they are:
- often required by the service anyway
However, not everyone has or wants to use an email address. The number of users without access to email will differ from service to service.
You should do research to understand this group and have a plan for helping them to use your service.
You should only ask users to create their own custom usernames if your service contains user-generated content that requires attributing, for example, a blog with comments. Allowing custom usernames lets users hide their identity if they want to.
User-generated usernames are harder to create and easier to forget than email addresses.
You need to:
- tell people whether their proposed username is unique
- suggest unique ones for them, in some cases
- make sure people can retrieve or reset their username
Always let people make changes
Whatever approach to usernames you take, make sure you let people change their email address or username.
Help improve this page
To help make sure the Create a username page is useful, relevant and up to date, you can:
- share research or feedback about the Create a username pattern on GitHub
- propose a change to this page – read more about how to propose changes in GitHub
If you’ve got a question about the GOV.UK Design System you can contact the team: