It is quite obvious that Google is beginning to put more importance on the use of reviews. It is all about trying to narrow that gap between the social web and ecommerce, where sales themselves are becoming more and more social in themselves. Just look at the regularity of community selling on sites like Amazon.
But will that be a factor when it comes to rankings? Will SEO have to adapt to be more ratings inclusive, a new addition after already changing to make way for both video and social results? Given the high priority given to review communities like Yelp and CitySearch when in results for both local and online businesses, and the way that Google is now encouraging G+ users to review local businesses by accessing search result data for suggestion customization, it has already begun.