Adele Barsh, UCSD business librarian, has created an excellent guide which will walk you through the process of market research. Warning: This is not necessarily an easy task. Best advice is to keep the following three things in mind:
1. Understand your starting point - What you first think is the best term to search, place to start or question to ask might not actually be the best. Be patient in trying to find that inroad into your research.
2. It's an iterative process - You may go through a series of starts and stops, searching with new information, looking in different resources and run into dead ends before you get what you need. It's not necessarily a straight line to the answer.
3. Manage your process - Take notes of what you find and where you find it. you may need to go back. Keep track of the good information you do find. You may need to cite it later. Have a method in mind as you go research.
Searching the patent literature is not a simple task. However, the UCSD Library has created a patent searching guide that will walk you through the basics steps you need to get started, as well as for advanced patent searching.