The single proved successful, charting high on many national charts worldwide. In the United States, it was Cher's biggest solo hit of the 1960s, peaking at #2. This was Cher's first top-three hit in the UK, charting at #3. It would be her last top-three hit until The Shoop-Shoop Song twenty-five years later.
Allmusic's Joe Viglione reviewed the song positively: "Metaphors abound as the old world mix of strings collides with the new world of pop neatly edited into this under 3 minute hit..." Modern critic Tim Sendra, when he reviewed the "The Sonny Side of Cher" album, wrote a mixed review: "The only track that has any real zest is the Bono-written novelty "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)," the kind of dramatic song Cher could knock out in her sleep but also a song with no real heart." In 1987, Cher recorded a rock version of the song for her comeback album Cher (1987 album) which was released as a promo single only. The 1987 version was performed on Cher's Heart of Stone Tour (1990), Living Proof: The Farewell Tour (2002-2005) and Dressed to Kill Tour (2014).
Also in 1966, Nancy Sinatra released her version of the song on her album How Does That Grab You?. It featured tremolo effect guitar (played by Billy Strange) and melancholy singing. This version remained relatively obscure until it was used in the opening scenes of the 2003 movieKill Bill Volume 1. This exposure caused Sinatra's version to be the one chosen by Audio Bullys when, in 2005, they used a sample of the song for their top ten UK hit "Shot You Down", credited officially to Audio Bullys featuring Nancy Sinatra. Canadian rapper Kardinal Offishall also sampled this version for his single "Bang Bang", which appeared on his mixtapeKill Bloodclott Bill in 2004. Rapper Young Buck sampled Sinatra's version on his song "Bang Bang" from his album Straight Outta Cashville. Rapper MMJC sampled this song for his track "C-Town Beat Down" on his album "Teaser". "Bang Bang" was included on Vanilla Fudge’s 1967 release, “Bang Bang”. This version of the song was later used in David Fincher’s 2007 film Zodiac. A portion of this song version was also used in Netflix original TV Series Lilyhammer Season 2 episode 8.
This song was also very popular in the Sixties in Italy and has been covered by the following artists: Mina, Dalida and the bands Equipe 84 and, in a psych-garage style, I Corvi. In France, the French version with French-language lyrics written by Claude Carrère and Georges Aber was sung by Sheila, and became a big hit there in summer 1966. Still in France, Jacno and Mareva Galanter did a cover of the French version (2006). In Quebec, Claire Lepage did a French cover in 1966.Also, in 1966-67, the song was sung in French by popular artist Dalida.
In the 60s Iranian singer Elaheh recorded a Persian cover version of the song with slightly altered lyrics, and more recently in October 2009, Mohsen Namjoo covered the early parts of Bang Bang, singing it in a traditional Iranian key at the end of his song "Hammash".
Romanian singer Anda Călugăreanu (voice) and Sincron band covered the song (in Romanian) called "Beng, beng" on a compilation from 1968 called 'Melodii din toată lumea VII' ('Songs from around the world VII')
Brazilian singer Denisse de Kalafe covered the song in 1969 called "Bang bang (My baby shot me down)" on her 'D. Kalafe e sua turma' EP.
In 1973 New Zealand band Butler released their only album "Butler" which featured Bang Bang as the first track.
In the 2008 French-Canadian movie Maman est chez le coiffeur, the song is played twice in French: the 1966 Claire Lepage version near the beginning and later by Elie Dupuis, one of the stars of the movie who was 12 years-old. The Dupuis version is also featured on the film's soundtrack.
In 2010 Macedonian punk-rock band Parketi covered the song as a single.
In 2010, Maiysha on Undercover: Live From New York
In May 2011 Burlesque performer Miss Annie covered the song as the soundtrack of short film Gang Girls featuring Shana Swash.
In 2011 Los Angeles singer/songwriter Sarah Ault covered Bang Bang on her debut album The Pressure Beneath.
On their 2007-2008 tour, Mexican rock band "He Shot Me" covered the Sinatra version to open their show.
In 2012, the Boston band, Emily Peal and The Band of Skinny Men, covered Bang Bang in their well-received YouTube video.
In 2012, San Francisco funk band Monophonics covered this song as one of the leading tracks off their upcoming album "In Your Brain".
Indie rock band Murder By Death plays the song at concerts and was featured on the Fuego! ep
On November 13, 2012, the song was recorded by Anneliese van der Pol on the first cast recording of For The Record Series, For The Record: Tarantino. The album features songs from the films of Quentin Tarantino, including Pulp Fiction and Inglourious Basterds.