We have an application that allows users to write posts/articles. Within this application, there are a couple features that require users to upgrade.

I think it's reasonable for the upgrade button to link to a new tab because it's quite disruptive to their flow - in other words, when someone has already put together a lengthy post, clicking on the upgrade button will prompt them to save their work, otherwise, they could lose their changes. Is that a deterrent to upgrading?

I thought of adding a "new tab" icon to the button to indicate that this upgrade will open a new tab, but it feels pretty non-standard to me; I don't think I've seen a button with a "new tab" icon. Maybe a plus sign or something else, but not a new tab, and also the fact that the icon is after the label, not before (e.g. a button like [ + Add ] ). Or is it just me?

enter image description here

  • Is the upgrade button with the "new tab" icon non-standard?
  • Are there other ways to indicate that this button opens in a new tab? Or is it even necessary to denote that?
  • is upgrade button always visible or it pop-ups when user try to use premium features?
    – Codesigner
    May 30, 2020 at 8:22

1 Answer 1


The icon currently used is understood as "external link", meaning the user will be taken to an url outside of the current one. It will likely create anxiety around losing the post.

That been said, it is completely ok for a button to open in a new tab. An icon denoting so is not necessary (unless you are actually opening an external link).

To ease user concerns around saving, you can add some language about the post being saved or showing a constant "Saved" status for the post.

Here are some options for brainstorming:

enter image description here

  • Thanks for your reply! An icon denoting so is not necessary (unless you are actually opening an external link) - Sorry, not sure what you meant by this because yes, the button is supposed to open an external link.
    – J Bo
    May 31, 2020 at 4:00
  • The post originally mentioned using the icon to communicate “new tab”, and not “external link”. If it opens a page within the current url, then the icon is wrongly used. If it opens a page outside the current url, then the icon is appropriate. May 31, 2020 at 4:06

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