How to Build Keyword Lists for SEO

When it comes to Search Engine Optimization, keywords are vital for success. I highly recommend creating a large keyword list when you get started. However, how do you find a lot of keywords in a short period of time?

In the YouTube video and the corresponding article below, I will go over the process I use. Some of the tools I like to use include the Google Keyword Planner and Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets. You can also watch the video directly on YouTube.

Build SEO Keyword Lists Video


How Do I Find Keywords For My Business?

The keywords you target with your website and your content should be related to your products and services. Personally, I utilize the Google Keyword Planner, which is a free tool available in your Google Ads account.

  1. Understand Search Terms For Your Products and/or Services
  2. Use The Google Keyword Planner
  3. Use a Free Tool Like Soovle
  4. Use a Chrome Plugin like Keywords Everywhere
  5. Look at Related Searches in Google and Bing
  6. Try Freemium Tools like UberSuggest,, and Wordtracker
  7. Use a Premium Tool like SEMRush

How to Build Keyword Lists

One of the major aspects of SEO is keyword research. When you are doing that research, you generally want to start with a list of SEO keywords you want to target.

  • Use Your Favorite Keyword Research Tools.
  • Export Lists of Keywords Related to your Products and Services.
  • Use Remove Duplicates in Excel or the Unique Function in Google Sheets.
  • Use to Get Search Volume For Your Keyword List.

1. Start With Your Favorite Keyword Research Tool

I would recommend using the Google Keyword Planner, which is the free, built-in keyword tool when you use Google Ads. If you have a different keyword research tool you use, then feel free to use the tool you are most comfortable with.

You can find our complete list of free keyword research tools here. Some of my favorites include Google Keyword Planner, Soovle, Google Search Console, Google Trends, Answer The Public, and the Autocomplete suggestions from search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, YouTube, and Amazon.

google keyword planner research


2. Export Lists of Keywords for Your Business

Keyword tools will allow you to export a CSV file. All you will need to do is combine the data from multiple CSV files if you use multiple sources to build your list. Sometimes, I will use 3-5 free tools in addition to data from Google Search Console. The more you have on your list the better, but you will have to follow step 3 below to remove any duplicates on your list.

2 export list of keywords


3. If You Export Multiple Keyword Lists, Then Remove Duplicate Keywords

One strategy I like to use is pulling lists from multiple sources. The benefit is that it allows me to find additional keywords and ideas. However, there will be duplicates on my list. Therefore, I use the ‘Remove Duplicates‘ function in Microsoft Excel or the ‘Unique‘ function in Google Sheets.

3 remove duplicates


4. Use to Find Keyword Search Volume

By using the tool available at, you can find keyword search volume for up to 800 keywords per day. Understanding search volume can help guide your content creation decisions.

4 find keyword search volume


How Many Keywords Should Be On My List?

I would recommend starting with about 100-300 total keywords on your list. Personally, I will pull about 500 keywords and then group them together based on the theme. Since a single piece of content can target multiple keywords, I group them before I create a content map.

How to Create a Content Map


I would say the minimum number of keywords should be 100 and the maximum should be 500. There’s no issue with pulling additional keywords, but you can always find more ideas as you start creating content.

In Summary

SEO keyword lists are not difficult to build, but they can be time-consuming. Ultimately, I wouldn’t overcomplicate the process and I would focus on the keywords that best describe your products and services. People are going to search specific phrases and you need to provide resources to educate, inform, and solve their problem.

Hopefully, the article helps you get started today. Please leave any questions you may have in the comments section.

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