Thousands of companies around the globe offer translation services, spoken language interpreting, and website localization, competing for business in a market estimated by market research firm Common Sense Advisory at US$17 billion in 2010. However, as a new report from Common Sense Advisory reveals, many of these firms fail to make their own websites available in multiple languages. The report, titled, “Marketing Language Services Online,” provides a detailed review of 300 websites of translation and interpreting businesses based in 48 countries throughout Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, and South America.
The report finds that 35% of language services supplier websites are monolingual. By contrast, just 2% of companies offered their website in 20 or more languages. “Fifty-four of the websites reviewed in our study cited ‘website localization’ as one of the services they offered, even though their own websites were available in just one language,” explained Nataly Kelly, senior analyst at Common Sense Advisory, who led the research initiative. “This is the language services industry equivalent of the shoemaker’s son going barefoot.”