Whenever Ariana Grande releases a new song, it’s bound to make waves, and there’s a good chance it will enjoy a notable debut on the Hot 100 the week following its release. There is no indication that her latest tune “Positions” will be exempt from this golden treatment, as it appears to be headed toward not just a healthy starting point on the tally in a few days, but perhaps even a No. 1 debut, which would be a historic win for the pop superstar.
“Positions” has only been out for a few days (it was released on Friday, October 23), so it’s too early to predict an exact number of sales...though it’s safe to assume that Grande’s new single will probably kick off its time as one of the bestselling cuts in America. It has a solid shot at opening atop Billboard’s Digital Song Sales chart, and even if it doesn’t launch in first place, a top five beginning is easy to predict. Ever since it arrived, it has held inside the highest reaches of the iTunes sales ranking, so it is clearly being purchased by fans non-stop.
Grande’s new pop/R&B hybrid is also a streaming success, whether looking at audio-only options or the visual that accompanies the song. Ever since being made available on Spotify at midnight EST on Friday, the tune has stayed at No. 1 on the U.S. chart, accruing millions of listens in America alone.
The Presidential visual racked up at least one million views per hour early on, and just days into its time on the internet, it has already earned well over 36 million plays (as of writing). All those streams also help determine where a song lands on the Hot 100, and so far, it’s going extremely well for the star and her new single.
Radio is the third factor included in Billboard’s methodology when the company compiles the Hot 100 chart, and while it’s usually the weakest for a brand new release, “Positions” is faring very well in that regard. The tune was instantly sent to stations across the U.S. upon its release, and the campaign to make it a serious hit was instantaneous. A number of high-profile players spun it once an hour for at least a day or so, and it’s off to the kind of beginning that few new releases could ever hope for.
At the moment, it’s impossible to predict with certainty that “Positions” will debut at No. 1 on the Hot 100 next week, but with every passing day, it seems more and more likely that the Grammy winner is headed straight for a fifth chart-topper on the most important ranking in the U.S.