Any company that wants to open up to a market outside its borders must consider the most important languages in the international market. Being familiar with the dominant languages in the business world will guide a business on which languages to choose when translating its website for potential customers.
The dominant business languages
These are a few of the languages you need to consider when expanding the horizons of your business:
- English. You might call this language the Esperanto of the 21st century, as it has become the quintessential global language at all levels, including in the business world. Around 54% of all web pages on the Internet are in English. What's more, this language is especially important when speaking with others in your industry or giving presentations at conferences, as much of the jargon specific to each sector is already in English. Business English is now its own separate branch within English learning.
- Chinese. It is an almost 100% certainty that China will become the world's largest economic power. For Internet users, Chinese (especially the Mandarin dialect) is the second most popular language. As over one billion people speak Chinese, it is clear that businesses need to translate their websites into this language if they want to expand worldwide.
- German. If your business is looking to open up to the European market, German is a language you need to consider. Around 200 million speak it; it is not only limited to Germany, but is used widely in countries like Austria, Switzerland, and Luxembourg.
- Arabic. If your goal is to expand your business in the Middle East, you need this language. Some 28 countries and 300 million speakers could become potential customers. Together with Chinese, it is one of the future business languages that should not be overlooked. We recommend considering these languages for the long term.
- Russian. The Russian market may be beneficial for your business depending on the product or service you offer. It could be a good idea to have your website available in this language, as it is not common for Russians to communicate in other languages such as English.
- Portuguese. While Portugal may seem like a small country with a narrow potential audience, remember that its language is useful for markets like Brazil and some African countries.
Languages as a vehicle for the internationalization of your company
Expanding a company's horizons always entails improving its resources and infrastructure, including its website — its cover letter to the world. Accordingly, translating a website into other important languages in the business world is a task that should be left in the hands of professionals. This way, you’ll procure a website with the sufficient quality for your content strategy in a new market.