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I just created a free website that provides a fun service for anyone who wants to use it. One thing that I would like to do is add a 'donate button', but the donations aren't to me. When user clicks the button it would redirect them to a third-party website's fundraising page.

How can I cleanly and unambiguously demonstrate that the donate button is not for donations to my website? I think people will be more likely to donate if the donation is for some good reasons rather than directly to the website. So far I have tried a button with the text Donate (to a good cause) I've also thought about changing the text to Donate to X Charity

However, if I use that then the users are going to wonder what X charity has to do with the website at all. Ultimately, I want to tell the user "if you like this website, please consider donating to my favorite charity".

My website's header with the donate button:

Website Header

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I don't think this is someting you could successfully put of inside one button. As you said you want get across the message that 1) People can donate 2) The money goes to a third party and not you 3) Who is that third party and what does it have to do with your site. That is just too much information to put into the small space a button provides.

I would instead dedicate a small portion of the page near the footer, in a sidebar, or on a seperate page to create a call to action section that will give you plenty of room to provide your message enter image description here

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Appeal to their sense of reciprocity. You're providing a free service, pass the good deed on.

As long as you're clear, and state where it's going, it should be okay. You can put the specific charity name on the button, with a > helping to indicate they'll be led to another site for action.

enter image description here

Reciprocity

In social psychology, reciprocity is a social norm of responding to a positive action with another positive action, rewarding kind actions.

It does differ from altruism, though:

altruism is the unconditional act of social gift-giving without any hope or expectation of future positive responses.

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