Bonus Gift: The truth about Britney Spears’ album sales – Part 3

SoutheRN EUROPE – Italy

Italy is an atypical country for charts and sales followers. Their organization, the FIMI, has been considerably improving its services lately. Before 2009, their input was close to null, but at the same time other publications, most notably Musica e Dischi, published highly valuable data about their industry.

No album from Britney has reached even Gold since the introduction of the official database in 2009. In all fairness, even her early albums haven’t sold a lot in comparison to remaining A-League stars Worldwide. In fact, Glory was the first Top 3 album of her career there. A result achieved mostly thanks to the non-existing competition, coupled with heavily front loaded sales. Among all European countries that had an album chart by 2003, Italy is where Britney was peaking at the lowest positions with In The Zone never climbing higher than #16.

Impressively, Greatest Hits managed to stay Top 20 during the entire 2004 Christmas season, ending as one of her top sellers there. Selling nearly 5,000 units in 2009 alone, almost the same as all her pre-Circus albums combined that year, it moved from 1xP to 2xP between 2006 and 2011 listings.

The figure in red in the table is the estimation of In The Zone. The album debuted at #16 in November 2003 and charted for 34 weeks. An estimation of 100,000 units is reasonable in that case. How come it hasn’t sold more than 70,000 copies then? The lack of information brings errors. Unlike websites of other countries, the Italian one only includes the chart run while the album features inside the Top 20, which means only the debut week for ITZ. Had the album remained Top 30 at Christmas time, it would have been easily enough to climb up to 100,000 sales. Given the final results, it seems obvious the album dropped to the bottom of the Top 100 at Christmas before recovering in early 2004 – thanks to Toxic – when sales are low. In terms of catalog sales, it is also the worst performing album among Britney‘s catalog there with a mere 300 sales in 2009 against five times more for Oops and BOMT.

Merging all the data together concludes on the following album sales to date:

  • Baby One More Time – 200,000
  • Oops!… I did It Again – 200,000
  • Britney – 100,000
  • In The Zone – 70,000
  • Greatest Hits, My Prerogative – 150,000
  • Blackout – 40,000
  • Circus – 55,000
  • The Singles Collection – 15,000

23 thoughts on “Bonus Gift: The truth about Britney Spears’ album sales – Part 3”

  1. Oh wow, thank you so much for this, MJD! I’m very pleased to see that all of her albums have increased in Europe, with the exception of “In The Zone” and “The Singles Collection”. I always had a feeling that “Greatest Hits: My Prerogative” and “Circus” were both eligible for 2x Platinum and 1x Platinum respectively, and I’m glad the figures on confirm that!

    Now regarding her sales, there are some very impressive results here, particularly her sales in Belgium, Russia, Switzerland, etc. Her sales in France are also very impressive compared to her peers, with even her 3rd album (“Britney”) outselling Christina Aguilera’s entire discography, including soundtracks and compilation albums!

    I think as far as the big markets go, her sales are impressive everywhere, except in the UK and Italy. Don’t get me wrong, she has great sales in those countries as well, but Oops!… I Did It Again selling 950k units in the UK is not as impressive as selling nearly 1 million units in Germany, and …Baby One More Time selling 200k units Italy is definitely not as impressive as selling nearly 200k units in Belgium.

    Overall I’d say she’s done great in Europe, at least up until 2009. Once again, thank you so much for doing these articles! As a huge Britney fan, I’ve always wanted to know her sales even in the smallest countries like Hungary and Czech Republic, so this detailed information is very helpful. I assume the next part will focus on Oceania and South Africa, right? Looking forward to that one!

    By the way, do you know the sales for B In The Mix 1 & 2 in Europe and Asia? I assume they didn’t sell much, but it’d be nice to add up those sales as well.

  2. Hi again MJD. When you update Britney’s CSPC article, can you please add an extra page for Greatest Hits: My Prerogative? I see that a lot of figures for this compilation have changed so the breakdown you have posted under the comment section is no longer accurate.

    Thanks! 🙂

  3. Amazing, thanks so much 😀 Cant wait for the updated CSPC article with these new figures. When can we expect that one?

  4. A long time ago this was posted on Ukmix forums, I assume it was fake as the information provided here is different

    Italy albums

    3x platinum
    Baby one more time – 300,000

    2x platinum
    Oops! I did it again – 200,000
    Greatest hits my prerogative – 160,000

    Britney – 100,000
    In the zone – 100,000

    Blackout – 35,000/40,000 (depends when it got the certification)
    Circus – 35,000

    Do you know anything about this? And GREAT job with this part of the article!

    1. Hi Bree!

      I expect those “certifications” to come from Frankie. I had words with him many years ago but he was always stating his estimations in “certifications equivalent”, which was very misleading, and still is to this day!

      And thanks 😉

  5. Wonderful. Thank you for putting all these figures together for us. The Britney Army appreciates your hard work! 🙂

  6. Hi! How much has Britney sold in total in EU including all studio, greatest hits and remix albums? Thanks!

  7. Hi MJD! Really enjoyed reading through all 24 pages. Britney does have some great sales in Europe! How would you say she compares to her peers, like Xtina, Backstreet Boys, Beyonce/Destiny’s Child, Avril Lavigne, and *NSYNC?

    Also, what countries will be covered in the final part of the series? Are WW totals going to be included?

    Keep up the great work. 😉

    1. Hi Trish!

      From her generation, I can think only of Coldplay and Eminem sold more in Europe. She is on par with the BSB and the combo DCs / Beyonce if we put them together, but then she easily outsold all the remaining ones you mention, likely even combined.

      1. Hi MJD. I was just wondering. Would you consider her sales in Europe as big as the likes as Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston?

        1. Hi Michelle!

          Well, no, she is clearly on a lower league. There is many females with albums at 5m or more in Europe, Britney has never been as massive in Europe as she has been elsewhere.

          1. Hi MJD. I was just wondering. If you put into consideration that a lot of her albums which did well during the mid and late 00s, when the market was starting collapse. Would she have been at least as big as Mariah in Europe. Just curious.

  8. Hi again MJD! So I just came across these certifications from Greece…

    “In The Zone” got certified Gold in 2004 for 10,000 units shipped (

    “Greatest Hits: My Prerogative” got certified Gold in 2004 for 10,000 units shipped (

    “Circus” got certified Gold in March 2009 for 7,500 units shipped (

    These certification come from the IFPI, so I assume they’re legit? What do you think about these? I find it odd that didn’t include them

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