The song spent three weeks at number one, March 31-April 14, 1984 on the US Billboard Hot 100, and was the first of two number-one hits from the film.
When the American Film Institute released its AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs, "Footloose" reached the 96th position.
The song was covered by country music artist Blake Shelton for the 2011 remake of the 1984 film.
It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song at the 1985 ceremony, losing to Stevie Wonder's "I Just Called to Say I Love You" from The Woman in Red.
In 2018, it was selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or artistically significant."