“I can’t imagine a world that doesn’t have the Internet tools we use.”Steve Muellner
The most beautiful thing about Montana may be the scenery, but Montana Silversmiths’ jewelry sure gives it a run for its money. Founded in 1973, Montana Silversmiths established itself as the premier supplier of championship belt buckles for Western competitions such as rodeos and bull riding. The company quickly expanded its product lines to include jewelry and custom awards, the majority of which are designed and manufactured right in Montana. “We started as a little mom-and-pop shop,” CEO Steve Muellner says proudly. “We’re now the largest manufacturer of Western jewelry in America.” From saddle trims to earrings, Montana Silversmiths brings the shine of the West to customers everywhere.
Montana Silversmiths counts on the power of the Internet to share their precious handiwork beyond the Beartooth Mountains. They use AdWords, Google’s advertising program, to reach customers all across North America who are looking to buy Western or silver jewelry. They trust Google Analytics to track which products are performing best and which areas of their e-commerce website could be improved. “If only all parts of my business were as measurable as the things I do with Google,” Steve says, “it would be terrific!” Their Google My Business listings share store locations, hours, and directions with local shoppers, keeping foot traffic coming through their doors. And their digital storefront entices and engages visitors with an alluring taste of Western style.
There’s no tarnish on Montana Silversmiths’ future. They operate four brick-and-mortar retail stores, including two in Montana. Their custom-made products are available in over 3,500 stores across North America, and their e-commerce website fulfills 36,500 online orders each year. Born from humble beginnings, Montana Silversmiths now enjoys steady double-digit annual sales growth. But for Steve, the most valuable jewel of all is preserving the glory of his Old West community for the next generation. “We want to continue to celebrate the West for as long as we can,” he says. “I watch the new people join us at Montana Silversmiths and then eventually shift from being the students to the teachers. Those are the moments that make me never want to retire.”