A considerable majority of the world’s Internet users conduct searches in more than one language, according to new research.

Digital marketing agency Greenlight reports that 76 percent of Internet users conduct searches in at least two languages, with about half saying they do so regularly or often. (See chart, below.)

In Italy and Spain, this rises to 100 percent – statistically everyone. In North America, multilingual searchers make up about a third of Americans and 44 percent of Canadians.

Adam Bunn, director of search engine optimisation at Greenlight, said he was not surprised that people who live in Belgium or other countries where multiple langages are in everyday use continue that behavior when they’re online.

He didn’t expect such a high incidence of multiple language searches in countries with a single dominant language, however. Bunn believes this “is possibly a testament to the position of English as the quasi-official language of Europe and the relative prevalence of English language web pages.”

Related link:

Greenlight – official site

Greenlight – blog post

Photo by Flickr user Dano/Dan McKay, used under Creative Copyright license