The global online population will grow 42% to 2.32 billion by 2014, according to a recent report from Forrester Research. The Middle East and Africa will have the fastest growth during this period (78%), but will have the fewest number of internet users as well with 241 million users.
The most growth will be in European countries such as Poland, Ukraine, Russia and Turkey. China will have the most online spenders in Asia and Brazil will lead ecommerce spending in Latin America.
In contrast, Forrester Research expects online growth in the U.S. and Canada to be small, only 3% each year through 2014 and these countries will make up only 13% of the overall online population. This is a decrease from 2009 when the U.S. and Canada comprised 16% of the online population.
For companies interested in reaching these growing online markets, Forrester recommends that those companies that translate their content into the local language will have the advantage. “E-businesses willing to translate into local languages – even if with a small amount of content at first – will find themselves better equipped to take on the increasingly divers global online user base than their counterparts with English-only web sites,” the report states.
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