If you add the keyword “best” to your local business search in Google, it will only return businesses with a 4.0+ rating. This verifies that Google uses review scores in their ranking algorithm for local businesses, at least for certain vertical. I haven’t seen the same ranking behavior by Google for searches like “best pharmacy“. In fact, they even omit reviews altogether. Perhaps because reviews are less relevant for those business verticals. Or, Google could simply be testing new local SEO experience features. Regardless, but it’s interesting to see this type of development. It confirms their strategy to adapt to an increasingly mobile-local world.