No easy answer
I have learned it is always a compromise and there is no one answer. That is why I have so many handguns and I am never fully satisfied. However, I am more satisfied lately with all the choices. The single biggest feature is reliability. After that, I want something that is simple and has nothing unique to remember, such as a safety or a switch to look for to activate the laser, if so equipped. Basically, I want to grab aim and squeeze the trigger. Following the basic logic kept me with revolvers for years. Lately, I have also added DAO automatics from Kahr and Glock.
In summary, keep things simple so you can operate when you are not at your best.