The shape of plasmonic nanostructures such as silver and gold is vital to their physical and chemical properties and potential applications. Recently, preparation of complex nanostructures with rich function by chemical multistep methods is the hotspot of research. In this review we introduce three typical multistep methods to prepare silver nanostructures with well-controlled shapes, including the double reductant method, etching technique and construction of core-shell nanostructures. The growth mechanism of double the reductant method is that different favorable facets of silver nanocrystals are produced in different reductants, which can be used to prepare complex nanostructures such as nanoflags with ultranarrow resonant band bandwidth or some silver nanostructures which are difficult to prepare using other methods. The etching technique can selectively remove nanoparticles to achieve the aim of shape control and is widely used for the synthesis of nanoflowers and hollow nanostructures. Construction of core-shell nanostructures is another tool to control shape and size. The three methods can not only prepare various silver nanostructures with well-controlled shapes, which exhibit unique optical properties, such as strong surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) signal and localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) effect, but also have potential application in many areas.