I look for long term growth. Any stock can have a spike that looks good but that doesn't properly represent the true pattern. I also look at the 52 week high and low. If it's at the high, that indicates there is less potential for an increase. If it was much higher but is not closer to the bottom, AND the future growth looks promising, there's a lot of upside potential. The company must be in the forefront of their industry, good earnings per share, reasonable debt share and in a growing market. Lots to consider.
And when I find a good stock, I'll often put it on a watch list instead of just jumping in. If it still looks good after a week or so, then you push the button,