Forgetting your username is like forgetting your keys and getting locked out. It’s a frustrating experience, but a flexible username field can make it easier.
Emails Are Easier to Remember
Allowing users to log in with their “username or email” is like giving them a spare key. If they forget one, they can use the other to log in. It’s easier for users to remember their email than username. This is because users check their email is regularly and type it often.
It’s a mistake for sites to not allow users to log in with their email. Users need to do a lot of work if they forget their username. They have to create a new account because usernames aren’t recoverable like passwords. This means going through the sign up form all over again.
Users who forget their username will populate your database with dead accounts. This can take up an unnecessary amount storage space if you have a lot of users.
Usernames Are Used Across Sites
If your login has an email only field you can benefit as well. Allowing users to log in with a username would help users who forget which email they used to sign up.
Users have many email addresses and can’t always remember which ones they used for which sites. But they’re more likely to use the same username across different sites. In this context, usernames are easier to remember. Giving users the option to log in with username or email will decrease login lock outs for all.
Allow for Both
Getting locked out of anything isn’t pleasant. You can prevent that from happening by using a “username or email” field on your login form. You’ll always have users who forget their login information. But you can make logging in easy by giving them two keys instead of one.