"What does this storekeeper sell?"
Translation:Que vend ce commerçant ?
you can say: Qu'est-ce que ce commerçant vend
When asking a question with what as either the subject or object, the French equivalent is the interrogative pronoun que. As the object of a question, que may be followed by either inversion of a verb or est-ce que (in other words the question starts qu’est-ce que)
When you use qu’est-ce que you don’t need inversion whereas just using que you need inversion. Both types of question are equivalent. Statistically qu’est-ce que is used more often.
Also note when que is the subject of a question it must be followed by est-ce qui (where , qui is simply acting as a relative pronoun with no actual meaning of its own)
Normally using inversion as a way of asking questions takes the form: conjugated verb + hyphen + subject pronoun
However, when the subject is a noun phrase (i.e. not a pronoun), it may be inverted directly with the verb if:
• the question word is short, such as où, que, etc.
• the subject noun phrase does not clash with the object
the general construct is: conjugated verb + person
Où travaille ton père ? - Where does your father work ?
Que veut dire ce mot ? - What does this word mean ?
Que fait ton futur mari ? - What does your future husband do?
Que fait votre tante ? - What is your aunt making ?
Qu'ont bu les étudiants ? - What did the students drink?
que dit votre oncle ? - what is your uncle saying ?
que veut mon chien ? - what does my dog want ?