There are about 7,100 distinct languages spoken across the entire universe but the most vital languages for global business expansion are just a handful.
English is the de facto language for international business but for professional networking, travel, academic collaboration, and other aspects, people prefer to deal in their native languages. This is where translation paves the way to international business and exposure to reach unexplored global audiences and niches.
There are ten other languages that also extend their usage in communication, which can be referred to as the most spoken languages in the world. English is an international language spoken around the world every single day. On a rough sketch, half of the world’s population speak the below 10 languages as they are native speakers of the same.
Note: This list is about the languages spoken as the first language or native speakers.
Here are the Top 10 most spoken languages in the world:
Mandarin Chinese ranks top among the most spoken languages in the world (in terms of native speakers) and it is the most useful language for creating more business opportunities as it has rich and diverse dialects. Almost one-fifth of the internet users communicate in Mandarin Chinese making it popular for translation services.
China has the largest eCommerce market in the world where you will need to teach your website and other information in Mandarin Chinese if you want to enter this huge market.
Spanish stands the second among the most native languages which include around 21 countries speaking this language in the western and eastern hemispheres and also runs close to English. Translating into Spanish offers a wide range of business opportunities to reach over 500 million people in terms of economic growth, for countries like Europe and Latin America.
Around 10% of all web content is in Spanish and this number will grow to make it one of the easiest languages to learn.
English, with interesting language origin and history, is one of the topmost spoken native languages for international business communication and academia. About 1.132 billion people in more than 95 countries speak this language. Several websites and Internet users prefer the English language, for global expansion and a wider audience reach.
The majority of the IT sectors and professional translation services use English as a target or source language even today.
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Hindi is the base for all the North Indian languages in India. About 615 million people speak Hindi whereas many experts rely on translation services to target the large economic base of the Hindi language in India.
If you are planning to expand your business roots in India by translating your website, business materials, and other related stuff into Hindi, it is a must factor to gain a stronghold in the market.
Read also: Languages of India.
Arabic is the liturgical language for about 1.8 billion Muslims around the world. It occupies an important position in the global political, economic, and cultural realms.
Arabic comprises 4 main dialects. Generally, it is widespread in the Western, Central Egypt, Southern parts of the Gulf, Yemen, and Northern parts of Iraq and Lebanon. Also, Arabic is the official language of about 26 countries.
Bengali stands in fifth place and is surprisingly the most spoken language in the world. Bengali is the native language of the Indian state “Of West Bengal” and the country “Bangladesh“.
Both West Bengal and Bangladesh were once united under ancient India. Bangladesh got its name when it separated from Pakistan in 1971. From 1947 – to 1971, it was known as “East Pakistan“.
Portuguese is the native language of Portugal & Brazil after English. With more than 250 million people who are able to converse in Portuguese, translating and localizing the content will explore many opportunities to reach the Brazilian market, especially for industries within the scientific, energy, and pharmaceutical sectors.
Asian countries are also showing great interest in their long-standing diplomatic and economic relations. Countries like Brazil (read also: languages of Brazil), Angola, Portugal and other countries around the region speak this language.
Russian uses the Cyrillic script making the translation a little bit more difficult. It is one of the UN’s official languages where about 150 million people consider Russian as a first language and around 120 million people consider it as a second language worldwide.
Japanese has dozens of dialects that are completely unintelligible to each other. They have three types of dialects which include Tokyo, Kyoto-Osaka, and Kyushu. Each of these dialects has many sub-dialects. Moreover, Ryukyuan is a dialect spoken in Okinawa and Amami Islands.
Japan is technologically advanced with fully streamlined workflows by investing in projects and businesses involving research and development. It is heavily dependent on commercial imports and exports requiring translation services more than any other country to support international trade.
Punjabi is in the tenth position of the most spoken languages in the world. It also stands in third place as one of the Indian languages on the list followed by Bengali, and Hindi-Urdu languages.
Punjabi is spoken by the Pakistanis and Indians as Punjab lies on India’s northwest border. Furthermore, Punjabis also reside in Pakistan making it a provincial language and is not considered Pakistan’s official language.
Read also Languages Of United Kingdom.