Really, really interesting issue of the latest GrokDotCom email newsletter by Future Now. Grok talks about different personality types and how they affect the "paths of activity" when going through the buying process online. Paramount to success is designing your site to meet each personality type, keeping in mind that personality types are not clear cut and are usually combinations. Then listen and adapt (Grok says optimize).
Attitude: Personal, activity oriented
Using Time: Undisciplined, fast paced
Question: Why is your solution best to solve the problem?
Approach: Address values and provide assurances, credible opinions rather than options
Attitude: Businesslike, detail oriented
Using Time: Disciplined, methodically paced
Question: How can your solution solve the problem?
Approach: Provide hard evidence and superior service
Attitude: Personal, relationship oriented
Using Time: Undisciplined, slow paced
Question: Who has used your solution to solve my problem?
Approach: Offer testimonials and incentives
Attitude: Businesslike, power oriented
Using Time: Disciplined, strategically paced
Question: What can your solution do for me?
Approach: Provide options, probabilities and challenges
...Acknowledging personality types online is critical - you are conducting business in a self-service medium. You aren’t there to modify your persuasion tactics when you notice they’re falling on deaf ears. You only notice you’ve missed the mark when you check out your Web logs.
Online, it’s the responsibility of your hyperlinks to establish, maintain and offer alternatives to your “dialog.”