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Global Online Markets Represent Major Growth Potential for U.S. Companies

Translation, Localization Key Elements to Tapping Emerging Online Markets (December 13, 2011)

LEHI, UT -- (Marketwire) -- 12/13/11 -- With the United States teetering on the edge of a double-dip recession, companies must work hard to protect themselves from eroding market shares. One solution to this challenge involves finding the right locations in which to operate. An estimated 96 percent of global consumers live outside of the United States [1]. Online, consumers around the world spend $448 billion on goods and services. By 2012, that amount is projected to increase to $694 billion [2].

To truly capitalize on the global online opportunities, businesses must look to countries where online access is still in the penetration stage. Africa, which is currently experiencing that world's fastest growth in Internet users [3], is an example. Europe is another example. Today, only 58 percent of people have Internet access, meaning there is an untapped market of 42 percent of the population, according to the 2011 Internet World Stats by Miniwatts Marketing Group [4].

In contrast, 78 percent of the people living in North America have Internet access, representing a muted market opportunity. The English language accounts for less than one-third of all online use. And the vast majority of global Web users, 70 percent, choose to visit websites in their own language [5]. Nine out of 10 users in the European Union, for example, prefer to visit websites in their own language. Forty-two percent of E.U. users would never buy a product from a website written in a foreign language.

Businesses that don't address the needs of foreign users miss a major opportunity. When companies translate and localize their content, they glean a significant competitive advantage, sometimes to the point of becoming the dominant player in an entire country. This is because translation and localization lead to an accurate and culturally sensitive brand representation. Users perceive that a business is committed to their requirements. As a result, they are more likely to respect and become loyal to a business with translated, localized content.

Microsoft, Apple, IBM, Sony and HP, with hundreds of offices located throughout the world, in dozens of different countries and continents, are shining examples of global businesses that have recognized and embraced the significant role translation management plays in remaining competitive and penetrating new markets. They understand the value of burgeoning universal markets that speak a multitude of languages, and are golden models of what happens when collaborative translation management is embraced.

But you don't have to be an industry titan to be able to afford translation services. There was a time when translation and localization involved heavy time and financial commitments. But a combination of today's best translation and localization technologies has reduced those costs significantly. By utilizing cloud-based solutions that integrate machine translation, community or crowdsourcing, and a mix of professional translation, the Lingotek platform has opened a new point of entry for medium-sized and large businesses. Through Lingotek, businesses can gain trusted, rapid translations, while expanding and growing in a cost-effective way. Globalization, facilitated by translation and localization, becomes a fast and cost-effective proposition.

In order to gain solid footing toward recovery, U.S.-based companies must use the most promising opportunities available. Emerging online markets are one such prospect. Through translation and localization, companies can tap into those markets. And by removing cost and time barriers, Lingotek enables those companies to increase their own traction, while contributing to our country's overall economic recovery.

Lingotek | The Translation Network and leader in collaborative translation solutions


[1] Dan Butto, "How to Grow your Business Globally," BusinessWeek, August 2010. (

[2] DePalma et. al., "Localization Matters," Common Sense Advisory, November 2008. (


[4] Miniwatts Marketing, Internet World Stats 2011. (

[5] The Gallup Organization, "Flash Eurobarometer 313: User language preferences online," commissioned by the European Commission, 2011. (

Sammy Totah
BOCA Communications
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