Top 10 Languages Spoken on the Internet

Top 10 Languages Spoken on the Internet

Language diversity only continues to increase as more people globally gain access to the internet.

The variety of languages spoken by internet users means that savvy web marketers need to translate and localize their web content to communicate effectively with their audiences.

Determining Your Target Audience

When considering the diversity of languages online audiences are using, it’s a good idea to translate your website. But how do you know which languages to translate your website into? After all, depending on your target audience and the scope of your website, it may be efficient to translate your site into just one other language.

For example, an English-language website geared at US audiences might translate content only into Spanish, while a Canadian website would do well to translate its content into French.

Sometimes simply translating website content into another language isn’t enough. For many markets, localization is an essential aspect of website translation, allowing you to reach specific audiences that speak different flavors of the same language.

With this in mind, a look at the top ten languages spoken by web users can help businesses and individuals decide where to focus their website translation and localization efforts.

Top 10 Languages Spoken on the Internet

10) Chinese

According to data gathered by Statista, as of 2018 the tenth most common language among web users is Chinese, with 1.8 percent. What is interesting about this statistic is that Chinese is the most spoken language in the world with 1,1284 million speakers. Despite this fact, there are still nine other languages that are used more frequently online.

9) Persian

Next on the list of the most commonly used languages by internet surfers is Persian, with 1.9 percent.

8) Italian

With 2.5 percent of users searching for content in Italian, the Italian language is eighth on the list.

7) Portuguese

Portuguese comes in seventh, with a whopping 2.8 percent.

6) Japanese

Japanese claims 3.8 percent of online searches.

5) French

French commands 4.1 percent of internet users, making it the fifth most common language.

4) Spanish

Spanish — also one of the top three languages spoken in the world — accounts for 5.1 percent.

3) Russian

As recently as 2015, Russian was not included in the top 5 internet languages. However, recent increases in the number of searches being performed in Russian along with an uptick in the number of pages being translated into Russian, now see this language in the number 3 spot with 6.1 percent.

2) German

German is the second most popular language on the internet, with 6.3 percent of users selecting it as their language of choice.

1) English

English still retains the number one spot in the most commonly used languages among internet users, with a commanding 52.9 percent.