It used to be that Google would show Adwords only on the right side of the screen. There would be a maximum of eight ads for each page. Then, they started to show between one and three ads above the SERPs. There still are a maximum of eight ads on the right-hand side.
The question is more what makes sponsored results appear above the SERPs? Or as many call it, in the yellow boxed portion at the top and left of the screen.
There are two main conditions. Obviously you need to rank in the top three positions but you also need a minimum quality score. I believe this to be a score of seven. If your QS is below, even bidding high enough to get you to the top will not get you there.
There is not a minimum number of advertisers needed. In other words, you could have only four advertisers being served and up to three could still make it above the SERPs. Indeed, there could be only three advertisers and all three making it above the SERPs.
If no advertiser meets all the requirements, it is possible to see no ad above the SERPs. It is also possible to see only one or two. Three is currently the maximum but that could change in the future (I’ve seen Yahoo with four.)
First, Google’s TOS (Terms of Service) states that they do not allow you to
have more than one account. That rule needs to be explained further
however. If you have two or more accounts with the purpose of trying to
dominate the sponsored searches (called double serving) so that those
who click end up on sites that are duplicates of each other, that is definitely
not allowed. In fact, you are likely to be found out and permanently banned.
If however, you have two accounts but they are used for two sites selling vastly different things, there is no problem at all. However, there really is no reason to have separate accounts for separate sites. You can do all your advertising for all sites from one account.
As for the specific question, one type of “mess” you hear is that if your QS is low, there is no way out and you must start from scratch. There is NO “mess” that cannot be fixed. Quality Score is low? It can be improved and quite rapidly too with some effort.
Another similar theme that some suggest is that you have to dump your domain and get a new one. Somehow, they believe that the domain is cursed. There are some instances of domains being what is called slapped. This slapping is actually a flagging of the domain for doing things Google considers detrimental to its users, such as installing malicious software. Google doesn’t index that domain for organic rankings and doesn’t allow advertising to it as well.
I’m assuming none of you are malicious. A low QS very likely has nothing to do with being slapped for the above. It is simply because you are not doing things right. No need to get a new domain or new account. Simply fix the problem.
What is really amazing is that those who cling to this messy account myth suggest copying the account to another and copying the domain to a new one. Without making any sort of change. They expect that the Adwords routines will somehow disregard the way it calculated their score before. If you simply copy, you will get the same results. Guaranteed. Searchers are not any more likely to click the same ad now when they didn’t before.
What is the Average CTR on Adwords? What is the Average CPC? Is a CTR of x% Good or Bad?
For some reason, lots of people ask these questions. I can only assume they are asking to figure out what they should do with their campaign. As explained, use the QS to determine how good or bad your click rate is, assuming you have relevancy.