Physical Singles Sales
As a reminder, the weighting is done with a 3 to 1 ratio between one album and one physical single.
…Baby One More Time (1999) – 2,919,000 equivalent albums
…Baby One More Time – 5,330,000
(You Drive Me) Crazy – 1,390,000
Sometimes – 1,120,000
Born To Make You Happy – 1,030,000
From The Bottom Of My Broken Heart – 860,000
Oops!… I Did It Again (2000) – 1,200,000 equivalent albums
Oops!… I Did It Again – 1,500,000
Stronger – 1,240,000
Lucky – 980,000
Don’t Let Me Be The Last To Know – 280,000
By 1999, the market of physical singles was good with 440 million records sold Worldwide. Selling 1 million units with one single only was still the trademark of a hit song. Thus, breaking this criteria with four of the five tracks from her debut album is impressive. From The Bottom Of My Broken Heart released almost exclusively in the US which is why it falls under a million. Although it had first shipped that many copies, it came short of selling that amount to consumers.
The very linear sales between singles 2 to 8 are easy to explain. …Baby One More Time was a gigantic hit, one of the few songs in history that sold over 5 million proper singles in one shot. It was also the song which attracted a lot of buyers to the album. With the album itself gaining traction, and already multiple hit songs, consumers didn’t need to buy following singles. The natural behavior was picking the LP instead. Thus, purchase of additional 2-songs CDs quickly became an issue of fans completing their collection.
Within less than two years, the young diva was already up to 13,7 million physical singles sold.