So many inventors believe that if you can get a patent you can get to market. These are two different issues and while they are related they are not dependent on each other. You do NOT need a patent to go to market. You need a patent to negotiate.
Find the market
The most important issue for an inventor is determining if you can make something the consumer is willing to buy. If you can’t make a cool new gadget that inspires a person to give up his/her money, it doesn’t matter how good the patent might be.
Know the pricing
The second issue is whether or not this cool new gadget can be manufactured at a price enabling you to price it so the consumer is willing to pay. You have to understand the multiple of 5 and how it is related to wholesale and retail pricing. If your gadget has a $10 retail sweet spot then you have to be able to make it, package it and ship it for $2. This can really be tough when you are just getting started. Now the patent becomes important.
Now the Patent
Once you know you have potential buyers and that your product can be made at a price the consumer will pay; it is time to consider the intellectual property. If you can file a good patent, now you can negotiate. This means you have the option to license your patent to a company that will make it, sell it and send you a check. For most inventors, licensing is the goal.
Licensing for most inventors is the only way to really grow big in the market place. It is the only way to get into the big box stores. Generally the only time an inventor goes to the bank is to deposit a royalty check. When you are trying to do it all by yourself, the only trips to the bank are for withdrawals.