Dozens of TV shows on all of the major networks premiered earlier this fall, driving sizeable gains in traffic for video streaming and associated websites, according to a study from comScore.

Alert search engine optimization (SEO) professionals could have engineered content to match up with the surge in online TV viewing, covering news and reviews about the season premieres in order to take advantage of the coattail effect caused by the increased interest in the video sites.

The comScore study found that nearly 85 percent of U.S. internet users had viewed video online in the month of September, and that the average online video viewer watched almost 10 hours of content in the same time period. On one of the biggest online video sites, YouTube, nearly 10.3 billion videos were viewed in the studied period.

Unscrupulous "black-hat" search engine optimization (SEO) practitioners have frequently taken advantage of breaking news events and associated hot search trends to peddle malware and spyware, but more responsible SEOs can do the same thing using legitimate techniques.