I recently saw a post on social media from a person who was angry about the high level of limited-English proficiency in the United States. While there was no doubt this person was committed to their point of view, it got me thinking…do people, and more importantly, businesses and organizations, understand the necessity of language interpretation and translation?
In a recent post, 3 Factors Informing Language Services in the U.S., Telelanguage explored language diversity in the United States and limited-English proficiency. There are over 350 languages spoken in U.S. homes and over 25 million people considered to be limited-English-proficient. The fact remains that language access and language services are vital for these individuals. But what business and organizations should understand is the amazing benefits they get from truly caring about LEP experience and the power of language diversity!
Here are 5 big reasons to care LEP experience, and the power of interpretation and translation services to reach MORE of your potential consumers.
1. People Prefer to Do Business in Their Native Language
Research has shown that people prefer to do business in their native language, especially when they have limited-English proficiency. This gives businesses and organizations an opportunity to speak directly to these markets in the language they prefer, giving them a leg up on competition that does not have proper translation or interpreter services for these consumers.
According to a Common Sense Advisory report, 80% of people surveyed with limited-English proficiency prefer to buy from websites presented in their native language, and 55% of those surveyed buy only at websites where information is presented in their language.
2. Hispanic Influence Surges
50% of U.S. population growth from 2010 to 2015 has come from Hispanics, and the U.S. Census expects the U.S. Latino population to more than double within the next two generations.
The U.S. Hispanic market was booming in 2015 at $1.3 trillion. In 2020, that amount is expected to reach $1.7 trillion. Neilsen
While younger generations of Hispanics are becoming more English-dominant and predominantly bilingual, Spanish is the most spoken non-English language in the United States, and providing translation and interpreter services for the Spanish language market is increasingly important for visibility and potential growth.
3. Asian Languages Market
The Asian languages market is not one that businesses want to miss out on! After English and Spanish, Chinese is the next most commonly spoken language in the United States, and the most commonly spoken language in the world, outnumbering English speakers 2:1.
Whether doing business globally or providing interpretation and translation to better serve your customers and clients, Asian consumers have buying power. According to Selig Center Director, Jeff Humphreys, Hispanic and Asian consumers are driving the U.S. economy forward. The Asian market, roughly 18.3 million Americans, was $825 billion in 2015 and is projected to grow to $1.1 trillion in 2020. UGA
4. LEP Population Trends
There was a record 42.2 million immigrants living in the U.S. in 2014, making up 13.2% of the nation’s population. Pew Research
Between 1990 and 2013, the LEP population grew 80% from nearly 14 million to 25.1 million. That’s over 8% of the U.S. population. Migration Policy Institute
Businesses must recognize the incredible opportunity to speak directly to those with limited English proficiency. The LEP consumer buying power is to show considerable growth in the coming years. Hispanic and Asian-American populations alone represent 70% of LEP consumers in the United States, and providing excellent language services means not missing out the opportunity to connect with and serve new markets who are willing to buy.
5. Language Services on the Rise
There is no doubt that language services are not a luxury, but becoming a necessity for most industries. The size of the overall global language industry in 2016 was $40 Billion (USD), and there are no signs of slowing that trend, with estimates of up to $45 Billion by 2020. Common Sense Advisory Research projects an annual growth rate of 6.46% for the language services market.
In short, it pays for businesses to really, truly care and focus on the LEP experience of consumers. Short-term gains can include sales, but the long-term benefits to businesses from providing quality language services include building real consumer relationships, brand authority, brand loyalty, and increased awareness and overall reach of brand messaging.
The language services industry continues to grow and Telelanguage is proud to have been at the forefront of interpreter services across all industries since 1991. We offer a complete language services solution for our customers! Whether you’re looking for an interpreter for your next meeting or ready to up your language services game for your clients, Telelanguage is here to answer your questions and help you get started. Contact Us for more information or chat with us live here on the site.
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