Talk is cheap, but solid communications are priceless in this global economy.

The U.S. military and businesses expanding overseas are two of the translation and interpretation industry's best customers. Overall, the market grew some 18 percent last year. 

According to, the translation and interpretation services industry is a $2.7 billion market that has grown an average of 22 percent a year since 2004. The health care industry is another area in need of language, partly because of the growing U.S. immigrant population.

Many opportunities exist in the business-to-business space as well. That space includes website translation and creation of multilanguage marketing materials. There are also related tech opportunities in the burgeoning market for mobile on-demand translation via SMS.  

By the numbers:

Ranking of "translation and interpretation services" in's "fastest-growing industries that are hospitable to small businesses": 1

Estimated size of market, in billions: $2.7

Year-over-year growth rate, according to 18 percent