What is small talk? It's often the start of many conversations. Typically not used with family members or other intimate contacts, small talk is an opening for strangers and friends to join in a conversation. The art of small talk helps to break the ice and to fill the gaps to get rid of awkward silences between individuals. It contributes to making people feel more comfortable. It is used to be polite and to mingle instead of staying quiet and keeping to oneself.