What are the pros and cons of header Login links with the following message:

  1. Login
  2. Login, [First Name]

I remember reading that addressing users by their first name is overall more friendly and targeted. However, I cannot find those studies.

Could you point me to any research regarding addressing users by their first names?


  • 2
    Curious...how do you track a user account to a computer accessing your site but not logged in? I'm wondering about public computers, etc. Mar 1, 2023 at 18:54
  • Accounts are automatically logged out after X time (this is outside of our control). We still know who they are based on cookies.
    – Nicolas
    Mar 2, 2023 at 1:03
  • "We still know who they are based on cookies if they don't block them before or delete them afterwards." FTFY Mar 2, 2023 at 7:21

3 Answers 3


Don't use Login, [First name].

  1. It's a mixed signal. The system is communicating that it both knows and does not know who the user is.

  2. "Login" is a command, and this command is being given to one and only one person. If you're Nicolas and the command is "Login, Anna", then you might feel like only Anna is allowed to login.

  3. It's definitely a good practice to show the user's name or username after they've logged in, as an authentication success signal. If you show it both before and after login, an unauthenticated user might think they're already logged in.


No research, just experience.


Different logins (e.g. admin/personal) to the same app in different browsers on the same machine. But then it's usually the user/profile name, not the real first name.


Users using their laptops/notebooks/mobiles/cells in the public which potentially exposes their name to strangers.


There are no pros and cons, it's just a matter of taste, the users already know where they are (previous registration). It can be a generic message (welcome back) or a personal greeting. It doesn't matter when the user is registered, however when the user is not registered and you use third party login prompts it is quite intrusive, and should be only shown when attempting to access members area or clicking the Login/Register button.

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