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  1. #1
    musicgold is offline Senior Member
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    Default Are these sentences natural? November 3


    Hi,

    Are the following sentences natural to a native ear?

    1. What factors do make a profitable flower store? ( I am trying to understand factors that make a flower store successful).

    2. Does that suggest that property rates are coming down?

    3. Do you see yourself buying these products next year?

    Thanks,
    MG.

  2. #2
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    5jj is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Are these sentences natural? November 3

    1. What factors do make a profitable flower store? ( I am trying to understand factors that make a flower store successful).
    OK, if you wish to use the emphatic 'do'. If not, simply drop the 'do'.

    2. Does that suggest that property rates are coming down?

    3. Do you see yourself buying these products next year?

  3. #3
    musicgold is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Are these sentences natural? November 3

    Thanks 5jj.

    1. What factors do make a profitable flower store? ( I am trying to understand factors that make a flower store successful).
    OK, if you wish to use the emphatic 'do'. If not, simply drop the 'do'.
    Without the 'do' it is not possible to distinguish if the sentence is a statement or a question ( of course without punctuation marks)

    I want to make sure that it is a question, similar to the followings.

    4. What factors are at play here?
    5. What factors did you consider before this decision?

    Given that, how should I write it?

    Thanks.

  4. #4
    old gobbo is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Are these sentences natural? November 3

    Hi Musicgold, perhaps I can add something to this ?

    1. A sentence beginning with "What" (or "who" or "where", etc.) will normally be expected to be a question. This also applies if "What" is used, as here, not as a pronoun but as an adjective: What factors ... ?

    It will not usually be misinterpreted to be a statement, don't worry.

    2. The most natural form of your question 1 would be:

    What factors make a flower store profitable ?

    (- note how the word 'profitable has moved around in the sentence. The sentence as modified by 5jj: "What factors make a profitable flower store ?" is acceptable, but one might want to fill it out a bit e.g. "What factors go into setting up a profitable flower store ?" or "What factors are necessary for a profitable flower store ?" I may be wrong, but I have the feeling that "What factors make a profitable flower store" is slightly US marketing English, and less likely to be found in the UK, which is not to say that people don't say perfectly dreadful things there and everywhere else)

    3. Your sentences 2 and 3 are natural (or "well-formed", as some people say), though if you are seriously considering carrying out market research, you should probably look for specialist advice on question construction in your geographical area, as intentions to buy are very tricky.

    4. Your questions 4 and 5 are also perfectly acceptable (although there is a slight uncertainty about who took the decision but I imagine that you and your informant know perfectly well)

    Best wishes

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Are these sentences natural? November 3

    When the question word is the subject of the verb, it makes the question. When it is not, then we need the word order of questions.

    What factors make a store profitable?
    What factors do we consider?

    What is on the table?
    What did you put on the table?

    Who kissed Mary? John kissed Mary.
    Who(m) did Mary kiss? Mary kissed John.

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