This article provides a guide on MLA Citation for Website. It discusses both In Text MLA citation and Reference List MLA citation. It cover in details MLA Citation for Website in context of number and presence of Authors and Social media content citation.(MLA Citation for Website: In text)
In MLA style, referring to the works of others in your text is done using parenthetical citations. This method involves providing relevant source information in parentheses whenever a sentence uses a quotation or paraphrase.
Usually, the simplest way to do this is to put all of the source information in parentheses at the end of the sentence (i.e., just before the period).
An MLA website citation includes the author’s name, the title of the page (in quotation marks), the name of the website (in italics), the publication date, and the URL (without “https://”).
If the author is unknown, start with the title of the page instead. If the publication date is unknown, or if the content is likely to change over time, add an access date at the end instead.
Websites don’t usually have page numbers, so the in-text citation is just the author’s name in parentheses.
If you already named the author in your sentence, you don’t need to add a parenthetical citation.
The Modern Language Association is not associated with this guide. All of the information, however, is based on the MLA Handbook, Ninth Edition as well as the MLA website, and is presented as guidance for students writing in this style.
MLA Citation for Websites in Ninth Edition
In previous editions, students and researchers creating an MLA website citation were not required to include the URL.
However, beginning with MLA 8, it is recommended that you include the URL when creating a citation for a website unless your teacher instructs you otherwise.
Even though web pages and URLs can be taken down or changed, it is still possible to learn about the source from the information seen in the URL.
When including URLs in a citation, http:// and https:// should be omitted from the website’s address (Handbook 195).
Additionally, If you are creating a citation that will be read on a digital device, it is helpful to make the URL clickable so that readers can directly access the source themselves.
If the website’s publisher includes a permalink or DOI (Digital Object Identifier), these are preferable as they are not changeable in the same manner as URLs.
Whether you include a URL, permalink, or DOI, this information should be included in the location portion of your citation.
Another change that occurred with the eighth edition that impacts how to cite a website in MLA is the removal of the date the website was accessed.
While you may still find it useful to include this information or your teacher may request it, it is no longer a mandatory piece of your citation.
Rules for how to cite websites in MLA
Compared to other formats like APA and Chicago, the MLA format is more particular about citing URLs and host sites.
Here are a few rules to consider when you cite a website in MLA:
- You don’t need to include “https://” and should start your URL with “www”.
- It is good to mention host websites, called “containers” (e.g., YouTube, Netflix, JSTOR, etc.) whenever possible.
- It’s not necessary to include the date you accessed the site, but it’s recommended, especially if no publication date is given.
You can also check out Best Citation Genarators
How to cite a website in MLA?
To cite a website in MLA, you need the following details:
- Title of source
- Title of container
- Contributors, including their names and roles
- Publisher (Include this when the publisher’s name if there a different publisher mentioned from the website name.)
- Date of publication
- Source location (i.e., URL or DOI).
You will not always find a website that has all these components. If that is the case, include whatever details you can to fit this criterion. At all costs, always ensure you have the author’s name, the title of the webpage, date of publication (if present), and URL or DOI.
General Procedure of Citing a website
Begin by indicating the author’s surname, followed by a comma and their first name. Input a period after the author’s first name.
Afterward, insert the title of the webpage in quotation marks. Remember to complete the title with a period right before the end quotation mark.
The title of the website is always in italics. Include the publisher’s name if a different publisher appears on the webpage.
What follows is the date of publication. Lastly, include the URL, or if available, DOI. Insert a period at the end of the complete citation.
An example is provided below:
Mabillard, Amanda. “Shakespeare on Jealousy.” Shakespeare Online. 10 Aug. 2013, shakespeare-online.com/quotes/shakespeareonjealousy.html.
Now that we have an idea of the correct way to cite a website, we can go into detail about each component.
As mentioned earlier, the author’s name is an essential component in a website citation. We shall now look at how to format the author(s) in different scenarios.
How to cite a website with ONE author
If a website has one author, simply begin with the author’s surname, followed by their first name.
MLA In-text citation of a website with one author
The parenthetical citation of a website with a single author is represented as the author’s surname followed by a period, which is added outside the parenthesis.
Since websites do not have page numbers, it is best to leave it at that unless the website has numbered paragraphs. The in-text citation should be formatted as shown below:
(Author’s Last Name).
How to cite a website with Two authors:
When the website has two authors, begin by the first author’s surname, a comma, followed by their first name.
However, the second author’s name is formatted normally- first name, a comma, followed by their surname.
The authors’ names are separated by ‘and. To identify the order of the authors, it is advisable to follow the sequence provided by the website.
MLA In-text citation of a website with TWO author
Follow the order in which they appear on the webpage when citing multiple authors.
The parenthetical citation will include the authors’ surnames, separated by the word ‘and’. I should look las shown below:
(Surname 1 and Surname 2).
How to cite a website with Three or more authors:
If a website has multiple authors, first check the order in which they appear on the webpage.
Once that is done, begin by writing the first author’s surname, followed by a comma, and the phrase et al., Latin for ‘and others.’
MLA In-text citation of a website with Three or more authors:
The parenthetical citation for three or more authors should include the first author’s surname followed by et al.
(Surname 1 et al.).
How to cite a Website with no author:
Some websites do not always have authors.
In this case, you should begin the bibliography citation with the title of the webpage.
MLA In-text citation of a website with No Author
In case you come across a website with no author, indicate the title of the webpage in parentheses. Follow the structure below:
(Title of Webpage).
Remember, the title should have the major words in uppercase, fitting for a title.
You can also check out Conclusion Maker.
When the website lacks a formal title
During your research, you might encounter websites with no definite title. In this case, you can describe the webpage in a few words.
However, it is not recommended to write the description in either italics or inside any quotation marks. The description should be written normally.
Description of the web page. Title of Website, Publisher, date published in day month year format, URL.
The brief description of the webpage you created is what you will use as the in-text citation, enclosed by parenthesis.
Unless the paragraph has numbered paragraphs or page numbers, do not add any extra information in the parenthesis.
(Brief Description of Webpage).
How to cite an organization as an author
Once in a while, you will encounter websites that do not have individual authors but are written by an organization, such as the American Nursing Association (ANA).
Organizations are cited as they appear on the webpage, without quotation marks or italics.
Enclose the name of the organization in parenthesis to complete an in-text citation.
(Name of Organization).
When stating the page title using MLA, you should include the “Title of Website” in brackets after it.
It is also helpful to put a colon (:) then the Date that you accessed this page. The title should have quotation marks around it.
The name of the website must be followed by a comma and the author’s last name.
The publication date can also be added after the author’s name, separated by “date.”
The URL address should then follow whether it is online or offline. The Date accessed will need to come next as well.
When using a citation generator, be sure to include the author’s last name first and a date.
The citation should look like this:
Author, Date of publication (with URL address). Title of the website; Retrieved from URL address, day accessed.
This is an example with two authors for MLA citation generator: Smith & Jones (2017) – “MLA.
Publishers are an important addition to the website citation. However, only include the publisher if they are different from the website authors.
The publisher’s name is usually located at the bottom of a webpage, otherwise known as the footer. The name is often placed next to a copyright symbol.
How to cite a Social media Website in MLA
Learning how to cite social media in MLA is fairly straightforward. You mostly follow the standard formula but add handles and sometimes descriptions in place of formal titles.
Let’s look at individual examples for Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
How to cite Twitter in MLA format
To cite Twitter in MLA, start with the standard information and then add the user’s handle in brackets after their name, followed by the complete text of the tweet (including hashtags).
Last name, First name of author or organization [@username]. “Full text of
the tweet.” Twitter, Day Month Year posted, URL.
Here’s an example from one tweet:
Organization [@Organization_Name]. “The more concise your message, the more likely it is to get a response.” Twitter, 21 June 2018,
For in-line citations, organizations take the place of the author’s last name.
How to cite Instagram in MLA format
For Instagram, follow the same formula you used for Twitter, using a description or caption in place of the title.
Use quotation marks if you’re quoting the caption but not if you’re writing an original description.
Don’t forget to credit other contributors if they’re listed.
Last name, First name of author or organization [@username]. “Title from
caption” or description. Instagram, other contributors, Day Month Year
Username [@username]. Oil painting of a young girl holding a bird. Instagram, art by Morgan Weistling, 13 Dec. 2017,
How to cite Facebook in MLA format
To cite Facebook in MLA format, follow the same guidelines as you did with Instagram.
This includes choosing between quoting a caption or writing an original description.
Last name, First name of author or organization. “Title from caption” or
description. Facebook, Day Month Year posted, URL.
Takei, George. “Early grammar police.” Facebook, 16 Jan. 2014,
When should you cite a whole website?
Most of the time, you should cite the specific page or article where you found the information.
However, you might have to cite the entire website if you are giving a general overview of its content, referring only to the homepage, or quoting text that appears on many different pages across the site (such as a company’s slogan).
If you cite multiple pages or articles from the same website, you should include a separate Works Cited entry for each one.
You can also check out Tips on Writing a Good APA Research Paper
1. How do you cite an MLA citation in text?
An MLA in-text citation includes the author’s last name and a page number. If a source has two authors, name both. If a source has more than two authors, name only the first author, followed by “ et al. ” If the text or information you’re citing spans multiple pages, include the full page range.
2. How to cite a website that has no page number in MLA?
To cite a website that has no page number in MLA, it is important that you know the name of the author, title of the webpage, website, and URL.
3. How do I cite a web page in text?
Cite web pages in text as you would any other source, using the author if known. If the author is not known, use the title as the in-text citation.
4. How do you write the author of a website in MLA?
Provide the author of the work, the title of the posting in quotation marks, the web site name in italics, the publisher, and the posting date. Follow with the date of access. Include screen names as author names when author name is not known. If both names are known, place the author’s name in brackets.