Linking to USA.gov
What It Is
Linking to USA.gov—the U.S. government’s official web portal—is a requirement for managing your agency’s website. OMB requires that you link from your homepage and major entry points to the homepage of USA.gov (www.usa.gov).
If your website has content in Spanish, it’s a good idea to link to GobiernoUSA.gov (GobiernoUSA.gov) from all your Spanish pages.
Why It's Important
- Section 204 of the E-Government Act of 2002 designates USA.gov as the official web portal of the U.S. government.
- USA.gov serves as the "homepage" for the entire U.S. government by providing a topical and organizational directory of U.S. government websites and a government-wide search index. Having this type of high-level "homepage" helps people start browsing from a known location.
- Visitors to your agency's website may become frustrated if they're looking for government information and services that are provided by another agency. Linking to USA.gov will help visitors who need information from different agencies, and who need a "starting point" to find government information.
- Linking to USA.gov promotes seamless government by allowing citizens to access the vast amount of information from across government without having to know which agency sponsors the information.
OMB Policies for Federal Public Websites require agencies to (#3F) “identify mandatory links and post (or link to) the following information on their principal website and any known major entry points to their sites:…5) USA.gov.”
How to Implement
You can use either a text link or a logo:
- Text links should say "USA.gov"
- For Spanish, use "GobiernoUSA.gov"
- Logos can be downloaded here:
You should use the following text for link descriptions and alt text:
- English: "USA.gov: The U.S. Government's Official Web Portal"
- Spanish: "GobiernoUSA.gov, el portal oficial del Gobierno de los Estados Unidos"
What about state and local government websites?
We highly encourage state and local government websites to link to USA.gov (and GobiernoUSA.gov for Spanish pages). This helps visitors who want government information from various levels of government, but might not know where to start. USA.gov helps people find U.S. government information and services at the federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial levels.
- The Department of Homeland Security has a text link to USA.gov and GobiernoUSA.gov in the footer of each page.
- The Department of Housing and Urban Development has the USA.gov logo and link on every page.
- The Department of Justice's Spanish portal links to GobiernoUSA.gov on every page.
- The State of Utah has a text link to USA.gov on the homepage.
- For adding a link to USA.gov, see sample icons and instructions.
- For adding a link to GobiernoUSA.gov, see sample icons and instructions.