Hm. I think I prefer to talk to people only about stuff they find interesting. Not sure how much I manage to do that, but that's ideally what I try to do.
I also don't like talking about things I don't personally find interesting.
But I don't really think of people as potential friends unless there's already a lot of common interests and personality traits. Otherwise, I just don't see it as a possibility (not my fault or theirs, and nothing really I can do about it or want to really).
When I do small talk with people I know I'm just forming minor acquaintances and not really making friends if I don't see an overlap between our interests/personalities. I don't think I've ever been friends with anyone who I didn't consider initially as very interesting and similar to me in some way.
I'm not sure how to make "close" friends. I try holding to the few friends I have by having a tit-for-2-tats
policy when it comes to emotional favors (and I basically expect people to treat me the same way). I have to make them feel good in some way in order for them to reciprocate. The only difference between friends and non-friends is probably that I have to be more mindful of the transactions with non-friends, but with friends, it flows more naturally.
Also, I don't really care at all what people say to me about me or my relationship to them. I feel like something's subconsciously wrong when I start wanting to tell someone they're my friend, or someone just tells me I'm theirs (that's always really embarrassing because it's really hard for me to consider someone a friend and don't like people just assuming the label since I don't want it to be an empty one).
I have very few friends though (only online), so I'm probably doing something wrong