The song was composed by the band's keyboard player and vocalist, Christine McVie and her then-husband Eddy Quintela. When released, the song reached #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. (#1 for four weeks on the American adult contemporary chart) and #5 on the UK Singles Chart. It continues to be played on radio stations as a classic hit of the late 80's, along with "Everywhere" and "Seven Wonders" released a year later. It was also accompanied by a music video, filmed on a farm, in and around its rustic buildings and fields. In "Little Lies" the singer would rather hear little lies than the unhappy truth from her lover, although near the end she admits "We're better off apart. Let's give it a try." Fleetwood Mac was known for singing about the group members' rocky relationships.
The single was also available on the 12-inch format, featuring an extended dance version, a dub version, and the single's B-side, "Ricky", a non-album track penned by Christine McVie and Lindsey Buckingham. A limited 12-inch picture disc was also released in the UK, and it was also the first Fleetwood Mac single to be issued on the cassette-single format.
Hilary Duff recorded a cover of the song, produced by Alex and Adam Anders, for the second season of the TV Land comedy Younger.
Duff explained; "They were like, ‘We want you to cover a song for the promos for the second season’ And I’m like, ‘Oh my God. Yes, of course, I would love to’. Fleetwood Mac is seriously one of my favorite bands of all time". As well, Romanian singer Alexandra Stan covered the song for her 2014 album, Unlocked.