Keepcustomer.com is viewing these changes closely and our engineers are already noticing the changes announced by Google. This will greatly affect the way users see and use the local business information. It is clear that Google sees local business as the future (no secret that about 80% of entire US dollars are in local business space). This move is definitely good for a lot of reasons and keepcustomer research team will analyze each of the changes.
The importance of reviews and ratings is again emphasized by Google here because they adopt Zagat rating system to improve the accuracy of reviews. That is a great move. Not only does such a review system give more insight into customer opinions, but it also eliminates spam reviews and number of bogus 5 star ratings from the Internet.