Thank you for your input and for the links. The reason the article deals chiefly with English word searches is that searching for something like 寝る in a data source that's Japanese-to-English oriented will inevitably yield the same results regardless of the interface, and kana-based searches are generally quite predictably organized (though I admit I could still have touched up on it). Considering this, I chose to focus on English-to-Japanese searches to see how different dictionaries compared in terms of sorting when using relatively the same source data.
The idea behind the write up was to see how I could better optimize English-to-Japanese searches for language learners, using the data as is, with the main goal being to improve JLect's implementation and share my thoughts along the way. I realize this may have not been clear and understand that other dictionaries provide several advanced features and other tools, contrary to JLect which has none, but my intention was just to test a basic search.
Regarding the WWWJDIC interface specifically, the lack of any specific output order is still an order in and of itself, hence the dictionary's inclusion – I still wanted to see how the results compared and to know the output method used. Nonetheless, I do admit the exact word-match is a nice option that I hadn't explored at the time.
I hope this clarifies where I was coming from; I think the nice thing is that each of the dictionaries are different and have different focuses and features. And of course, I am grateful for all of your work.
Out of curiosity, however, is there any reason why searching for the key string "to sleep" yields few results (and none when selecting common words or exact match)?