Greatest Hits is a greatest hits album by the Spice Girls. It was their first album to be released in seven years and was supported by an accompanying world tour. It received a physical release worldwide throughout November 2007, except for the United States where it received a limited release on 6 November 2007 through Victoria's Secret and a full release on 15 January 2008. In August 2012, after the Spice Girls' performance at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, the album re-charted in the top ten, twenty and thirty of most major charts worldwide including the United Kingdom, United States, New Zealand and Australia. The album has sold 7 million copies worldwide.
The plan to reform and release a greatest hits had long been speculated by the media, but its planned release was first confirmed by Melanie Brown in June 2005. Speaking just before a planned reunion for Live 8 (that never actually materialised due to Brown's contractual agreements in Los Angeles), she stated "We'll get back together because we all want to. I know everyone is up for it. There is going to be a greatest hits album and we've got loads of new songs that nobody has heard yet." When the Spice Girls reformed in 2007, Melanie Chisholm said to a journalist that EMI had planned a greatest hits album, so the girls found it appropriate to go on the Return of the Spice Girls tour.
The album was released in several different formats, including versions with bonus DVDs and CDs. The limited edition box-set includes the normal standard edition CD, a remix CD, a karaoke CD, a DVD of the group's music videos, individual postcards of each Spice Girl and a friendship bracelet bearing the words Spice Girls.
In the United States, the album was initially released only through Victoria's Secret stores together with a digital release via the iTunes Store. It was announced that other retail outlets would receive them on 15 January 2008; however, online retailers listed the date as 11 December 2007, and copies of the album were found in retail outlets outside of Victoria's Secret on the release day. Despite the revision of the Billboard charts (beginning in the week of 7 November 2007) in the United States, defining that albums sold by exclusive retailers (e.g. Wal-Mart, etc.) were eligible to chart on the Billboard 200,Greatest Hits sold over 600,000 copies through Victoria's Secret stores, but was not eligible to charting in the week of 13 November 2007 due to Victoria's Secret not being SoundScan enabled.
The artwork for Greatest Hits was revealed through the group's official website in August 2007. According to the announcement, the group were all involved with the design, and were pleased with the outcome. It features a £1,000,000 jewel encrusted logo, which pays homage to their debut album, Spice (1996). The jewels were designed by David Morris and each letter represents one member of the group. The "S" is made from amber and represents Victoria Beckham; the ruby pink "P" is Emma Bunton; Melanie C’s letter "I" is made from a diamond; Geri Halliwell is the "C", made from amethyst stones and the emerald "E" is Melanie B. According to a source, they wanted something simple and stylish, and it is one of the most expensive album covers ever made.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic wrote that the songs featured on the album have aged "exactly as you thought they might". Spence D. of IGN cited Greatest Hits as being "pretty much what you would expect it to be".
In the group's home country of the United Kingdom, the album missed the top spot, peaking at number 2 on the UK Albums Chart. To date, it has sold in excess of 400,000 in the country. Despite missing number one in the United Kingdom, it managed to become the group's first number-one album in Australia, and was certified platinum there (for shipments of over 70,000 units).
For reasons stated above, despite selling over 600,000 copies through Victoria's Secret stores in the United States, the album barely made the top 100 of the Billboard 200, peaking at number 93.
Elsewhere, the album peaked at number 9 in Ireland, number 15 in New Zealand, and managed to peak inside the top 20 in Italy, the top 50 in Sweden, and the top 75 in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and the Netherlands. The album made the top 10 at number 7 on the European Top 100 Albums chart, published by Billboard.