I'm currently building a working prototype of my product for my home business. Without giving too much away, it is a product you can use around the house to make maintenance a lot easier and almost fun. I think the market will be strong for these reasons.
Here is my issue. These units are already on the market but in very small pockets. They are not mainstream. In fact, I've never physically seen one, just some pictures and videos on the internet. I want to change that by making my own similar product and start selling it.
I can't patent this as the product already exists in the world (albeit on a very small scale), so how do I protect my business once I start selling these units for real? What stops other companies from making the same thing and running me OUT of business?